Christmas present for birders from the feeders at Sapsucker Woods (Cornell). The pileated woodpecker to your right (middle feeder on the post) is the male.
This is at Chestnut Ridge, a county park near where I grew up in western New York. I didn’t know about it until a few years ago. Sadly, the one time I was back there in 2015, my energy drained on the trail before I could get to the waterfall, so I’ve never seen it. I’m not sure my dad knew about it. He would have loved it, I think. Video is by John Kucko, who specializes in WNY/Finger Lakes photography and video.
This is the first time since 2019 that Lessons and Carols, a Christmas Eve tradition at Rockefeller Chapel, has been held in person. I remember in 2020 and 2021, it was streamed. This year it was both in person and streamed. I attended, but within a few days had developed my first bout with COVID-19. I held out almost three years.
Rockefeller is always an experience. The snow was a great touch.
I love that the children don’t have to make or buy costumes to be farmyard animals. These days they can wear pajamas. My favorite was the Holstein cow (possibly an anachronism).
Miller Woods is part of Indiana Dunes National Park. The Wolverine, Amtrak’s train from Chicago to Pontiac (and back), passes it and offers an opportunity to see ridge and swale topography.
I wanted to repeat an experience of hearing and seeing frogs at Fullersburg Woods from a few years ago, but instead I saw tadpoles — many tadpoles.
I was excited to see swans that aren’t the mute variety near Little Red Schoolhouse. Their galloping takeoff is something to behold.
Normally I’d have taken a couple of Amtrak trains to Pennsylvania for Christmas, but 2020 isn’t normal so here I am in Chicago. Normally if I were in Chicago I’d attend Lessons and Carols for Christmas Eve at Rockefeller Chapel on the University of Chicago campus. But it’s 2020, so here we are. I lit my own candle.
March 31, 2019
Indian Ridge Marsh is a recent (2017) addition to the Chicago Park District, located a little southeast of Big Marsh Park near Lake Calumet. Norfolk Southern lines run down the ridge. While I was visiting, NB and SB freights met and passed each other.