This fall, Ed and Sil Pembleton, naturalist guides with a strong repeat following, join Naturalist Journeys and the Aldo Leopold Foundation to share their love of prairies, the Mid-West and the legacy of conservation giant, Aldo Leopold. Experts from the Aldo Leopold Foundation staff join Ed and Sil for this year’s October 11 – 17, 2015 tour that showcases the wonderful Wisconsin places where Leopold grew up. Explore treasured locations that inspired Leopold’s conservation writings and principles.
Leopold is famous for his deeply profound, lyrical essays in A Sand County Almanac and other publications, and was a conservationist, forester, philosopher, educator, writer and outdoor enthusiast. As David Shribman, executive editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette once said, Leopold is “The poet laureate of the environmental movement.” His legacy lives on through the Aldo Leopold Foundation, a focal point of the tour. Over 2-million copies of his book, written 65 years ago, have been published in nine languages.
Naturalist Journeys’ owner Peg Abbott is excited about the tour partnership with the Aldo Leopold Foundation and hopes that the company’s decades of nature and birding tour experience helps The Foundation find new ways to encourage educational travel for its members, and anyone wanting to learn more about the Leopold legacy. The Foundation currently offers day tours of the Aldo Leopold Shack, and occasionally weekend seminars, but this week-long adventure in October is new. Conservation enthusiasts can look forward to a tour, framed in Wisconsin’s glorious fall colors and heralded by the call of Sandhill Cranes. Abbott notes that the birds are preparing to migrate, a poignant time of year learn more about Aldo Leopold’s life, work and philosophy.
Central to this week-long experience is time at the Leopold Farm and Shack, where Leopold found inspiration for many of his essays. Tour participants will contemplate and discuss his conservation ideas and visit the new Leopold Legacy Center, where his inspiring work of advocating a land ethic continues. Both Ed and Sil appreciate literature, and they have prepared readings throughout the tour. In addition to generous time at the Shack and with the Aldo Leopold Foundation staff, participants will explore locales around Wisconsin where Leopold, his family and students worked, learned and planted the seeds of a land ethic that continues to grow and endure today.
Ed Pembleton, former Director of the Leopold Foundation, says, “Leopold inspired me. I have spent my career protecting places important to Sandhill Cranes, and in educating people about them. I keep this quote from Leopold where I see it daily: ‘Our ability to perceive quality in nature begins, as in art, with the pretty.’ It expands through successive stages of the beautiful to values as yet uncaptured by language. The quality of cranes lies, I think, in this higher gamut, as yet beyond the reach of words.”
The Foundation’s Wisconsin-based work has international influence; close to the Leopold Foundation is the International Crane Foundation’s headquarters. Participants on the October 11 – 17 tour will have the opportunity to see all 15 of the world’s species of cranes at the International Crane Foundation.
Find full details of Naturalist Journeys’ Aldo Leopold’s Wisconsin Nature and Hiking Tour, limited to just 12 persons, at http://naturalistjourneys.com/jcalendar/jc_WI15.htm. This seven-day nature and birding tour begins and ends in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
More about the Aldo Leopold Foundation:
The Aldo Leopold Foundation’s mission is to foster the land ethic through the legacy of Aldo Leopold. Their vision is to weave a land ethic into the fabric of our society; to advance the understanding, stewardship and restoration of land health; and to cultivate leadership for conservation. The five children of Aldo and Estella Leopold established the Aldo Leopold Foundation as a not-for-profit conservation organization in 1982.
More about Aldo Leopold:
Leopold,deservedly known as the “Father of Wildlife Management,” wrote the first text and taught the first course at the University of Wisconsin. A superb teacher and researcher with a great ability to connect with landowners, he and his students were involved early on with farmers on the prairie near Lake Mills in a cooperative research and wildlife management project.
More about Naturalist Journeys LLC: http://www.naturalistjourneys.com
Naturalist Journeys, LLC creates top-rate, unique natural history and birding tours. Our list of tours includes off-the-beaten-track locations, allowing participants to get to know places close to home that they may know little about. We like to build intrigue, and our strong network of talented guides share their expertise and help design our tours.
Photo credits: Leopold Shack, Ed Pembleton; Crowned Crane, Pat Owens