Great Hollow Wilderness School

Highlights from the Hollow: Week 4


I don’t blame this Monarch for sticking around for fall in New England. The leaves are turning magnificent colors, making the forest tapestry turn from the ‘wall of green’ into a four dimensional masterpiece vibrant enough to make Van Gogh drool. The falling leaves are swinging faster and faster down the wind paths, racing each other or outwitting the grab of a child.

We learned recently that plants don’t absorb every color of the rainbow, leaving behind the light color they already possess and drinking up the one/s they lack. An interesting parallel to the change of the leaves; taking their own turn creating rainbows; as if to thank the light of the summer. The magic of this isn’t lost on the Jr. Naturalists.

As we enter into the fall, we also feel the stark relationship between gathering and letting go. As the wheat is harvested, we gain a bag of grain, but the plant is sacrificed. And so it goes, in nature, the great cycles of life. Nature reveals this with shameless precision and choice, never as gratuitous or wasteful. Thursday the Pioneers witnessed this phenomenon in the woods, real time, start to finish.

It was quite the experience.

After being humbled by nature’s cyclical display, we trekked up the hill to the cabin, where Ethan had prepared several fires. These were to be made into primitive ovens and stoves.

Underground Oven


Eggs on a Rock

Coal Muffins

Clay Oven

 The scouts had a challenging day of teamwork and goal setting……


The Wilderness Challenge took on the Great Swamp:

(Evergreens always have the last word in the fall.)