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How are Deer Doing This Winter?


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
February 9, 2016

This morning, during our weekly phenology walk with Peter Harris, we spent a considerable amount of time tromping through deep snow, covering our cheeks form the cold wind, and mentioning how chilly out it was. Although this winter has been relatively mild according to Northeastern Minnesota standards, today was harsh. Click to see full size […]

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Winter Birds: A Chilly Thrill


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
February 6, 2016

Long before the first curls of sunlight hit the frosty trees this Friday, a group of Wolf Ridge naturalists hopped in a van to visit a nearby birding hotspot- the Sax Zim Bog. The Sax Zim Bog is a beautiful winter habitat for birds, moose, wolves, and lots of other wildlife, and the bog draws […]

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Oak Abscission


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
January 10, 2016

Pin oak fall leaf photo by Rod Kuehn We’re in the bitter cold of January, but the Pin Oak outside Wolf Ridge’s Science Center is still holding onto its leaves as though it were fall. You’ve probably seen oak trees near you that also hold onto their leaves through the winter. What’s the story? Did […]

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Keeping Our Heads in the Clouds


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
November 12, 2015

This past week, Wolf Ridge was in a fog that lasted for multiple days. Fog occurs when the temperature of the air cools to the dewpoint: the temperature at which water condensates onto particles in the air. Over the past week, a front of warm air moving across the colder surface of Lake Superior cooled […]

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Snow Bunting Season


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
November 6, 2015

Here at Wolf Ridge we are starting to see the first signs of the upcoming winter season. One of these signs is the presence of winter bird species. A particular species we have seen in large amounts is the snow bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis). These birds travel from their breeding grounds in the Arctic tundra down […]

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Nothing “Common” About It


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
October 27, 2015

Have you ever been out on a walk and paused to notice something “cool?”  You stop to check out this tree, flower, rock, mushroom, or whatever it is that caught your attention. You whip out your handy field guide to try and identify this neat specimen only to find it referred to as “common”. This […]

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Raspberries and Changing Climates


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
October 23, 2015

Fall in Finland, MN has been changing. Gradually each year, the warm days have been lasting longer into October. This year has proven to fit the mold. It was 80 degrees on October 11th. This has thrown the raspberries on the Ridge out of whack. On Tuesday, October 13th, we were wandering around and noticed […]

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Cranberry Road?


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
October 7, 2015

“Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelled of ELDERBERRIES!” – Monty Python What’s in a name? The Wolf Ridge road, otherwise known as Cranberry Road, has its namesake in the high bush cranberry. Otherwise known as cranberry viburnum, the high bush cranberry has been in full fruiting fabulous-ness the last two weeks. High […]

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Why I Teach


Posted By David Butcher
October 5, 2015

One of our favorite stories comes from Afton-Lakeland teacher Derek Olson.  Here is his story, as published in “Chicken Soup for the Soul: Teacher Tales.” – David Butcher, Wolf Ridge Adventure Programs Coordinator “I’ll never forget Chelsea. She was a wounded soul. Over the years she had always struggled—both academically and with selfconfidence. In addition, her […]

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Spotted Tussock Moth


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
October 5, 2015

One of the first critters we noticed here at Wolf Ridge was a very unique looking caterpillar. Walking around campus we all noticed these fuzzy black and yellow banded caterpillars with spiky white hairs and had no idea what they were! We very quickly learned they are called the Spotted Tussock Moth. The Spotted Tussock […]

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Mushrooming on the North Shore


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
September 30, 2015

This fall season mushrooms were abundantly lining the forest floor. We saw many different sizes, colors and shapes! There were the bright orange and yellow, Fly Amanitas, a 5 pound Giant Puffball, uniquely shaped Lobster Mushrooms, and the Orange Jelly on decaying wood. Not only were the mushrooms visibly appealing but we were pleased to […]

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Wolf Ridge Part of Healthy Northland Farm to School Grant Tour


Posted By Carrie Anderson
September 11, 2015

Today we were proud to be part of a tour of several awesome “Farm to School” projects in the northland. Read Wolf Ridge’s farm story.

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An End and a Beginning


Posted By Summer Camp Staff
August 21, 2015

As summer camp winds down, I walk along the trails and feel pangs of nostalgia. This is due in part to the normal process of leaving a place; as I visit my favorite spots for possibly the last time, memories of the past year flash through my mind. But the nostalgia is heightened by the […]

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The End of Summer


Posted By Summer Camp Staff
August 19, 2015

Summer 2015 at Wolf Ridge is slowly coming to an end. A few of the trees are already starting to shift to their autumn hues. With every passing day we find ourselves facing another last—the last Sunday night scavenger hunt, the last Raven Lake camping trip, and the last dip in Wolf Lake. As we […]

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Starlight Paddle in the Apostle Islands


Posted By Summer Camp Staff
August 17, 2015

It was 1:00 am on Stockton Island in the Apostle Islands. I awoke to the beeping sound of my watch alarm, and I reluctantly slid out of my sleeping bag to check on the sky conditions. I unzipped the door of my tent to find the sky bursting with billions of tiny sparkles of light. […]

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Musings on a Morning Moment


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
August 10, 2015

The view of the valley overlooking Sawmill Creek   I went outside this morning to observe everything I could in five to ten minutes. After all, life is busy around Wolf Ridge and sometimes when you remember to appreciate where we work and play you only have five to ten minutes to devote to it. […]

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Camp Traditions: All Camp Games


Posted By Summer Camp Staff
August 5, 2015

Every Friday afternoon, I get to wear one of my favorite articles of clothing—my rainbow tutu. In fact, we’ve gotten to the point in the summer where everyone can tell that it’s Friday based on that very prominent tutu. Although it’s not out of the question that I would wear the rainbow tutu just for […]

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Windbound!


Posted By Summer Camp Staff
August 2, 2015

Our first Apostle Island sea kayaking trip of the season began with a gorgeous paddle in some sandstone sea caves near Meyer’s Beach. The sun was shining, the water was warm for swimming, and the waves were calm. We enjoyed the steep, golden cliffs and arches, and the beautiful red pines clinging to the edges. […]

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Edibles Everywhere


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
July 30, 2015

This past week I taught a Wild Edibles class with a group of Junior Naturalists excited to learn about edible plants they might find on their trip to Quetico Provincial Park. Lucky for them, late July is a wonderful time to sample the bounty of the Northwoods forest. Before heading out to harvest, we first discussed […]

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A Story About Our Stories…


Posted By Wolf Ridge Naturalist
July 30, 2015

I recently enjoyed a conversation with a Wolf Ridge assistant trip leader who was planning a Trees and Keys trail lesson for the Isle Royale backpacking trip leaving this week. During our conversation, he explained to me that he was inspired to teach the lesson after having seen a viral Internet post about children’s abilities […]

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