Category Archives: Highbanks Metro Park

Record Snowfalls, Record Fun

Snow memories (and winter “survival” strategies) from February 17, 2010:

Cocooning is overrated and easily overdone. Long periods of inactivity may be a course of self improvement for caterpillars, but the results are generally not so favorable for people.

If there were ever a winter to compel hibernation, this might be the one. Record snowfalls and low temperatures make for interesting reading and better than average “how about this weather” conversations, but they also make it more likely we’ll have to live without bananas and bread for a few days.

My winter survival strategies include traveling to “summer” somewhere else in the world and taking time out for some of the indoor attractions that are forgotten with warmer weather. But my best game plan for a season that always seems to linger a little too long is simply to bundle up and get right out in the middle of it all. Then it’s fun again.

My daughter assures me that none of her future books will include a chapter on how her mom once made her run in snowstorms. I do hope, however, that she will remember the silly fun of making snow angels in the middle of the road after a trail run through Highbanks on the day we got over nine inches of snow.

Columbus Things To Do

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In-Town Tourist: Bald Eagles at Highbanks

The sycamore-lined river that runs alongside one of my running trails has become the fishing grounds for a pair of American Bald Eagles, and Highbanks Metro Park visitors (and employees) are more than a little excited about the new family.  Parking lots are fuller, and I’m seeing more hikers with cameras and binoculars. Yesterday a park naturalist alerted me to the arrival of an eaglet and increased parental activity centered around feeding the new baby.

A ranger with a scope for visitor viewing is often stationed at the observation deck off of the Overlook Trail.  The nest is in the distant upper branches of a sycamore tree in the protected Edward F Hutchins Preserve.  Smart birds.  You’ll need a ranger or someone with knowledge of the nest location to spot it.

Females generally lay one to three eggs, so the watch is on for eaglet siblings.  I’m lingering after my trail runs to watch the skies with my telephoto zoom.

Columbus Things To Do

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On the Turkey Trail

highbankshills

stump

Birthdays and holidays always send me to the woods.  It’s been a personal tradition to run on my birthdays and New Year’s Day.  Yes, I generally run on most other days too, but it’s especially affirming to not take a “day off” when the day is marking a significant event.  Thanksgiving and Christmas are all about family and friends though, so even better than a solo run, is a family hike through a favorite park on Thanksgiving Day.

kids

It’s no surprise that my kids and I ended up at Highbanks Metro Park.  Hannah and I run its trails frequently. The leaves are all on the ground now, revealing the topography of land once chosen by the ancient Adena Indians.

Columbus Things To Do

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