You are browsing the archive for Dan Wilcox.

Wild Side: Extreme trout fishing in N.C.

May 9, 2012 in Pierce County Herald

Twenty years ago my brother John and his friend Dan Heindl started a Boy Scout troop in Madison Wisconsin to teach boys character and about the outdoors. My nephews Brian and Patrick became Eagle Scouts interested in kayaking. The Boy Scout troop merged into an Explorer Post with boys and girls who were interested in kayaking and rock climbing. My nephew Brian became an expert kayaker who won a junior Midwest whitewater championship. Continue Reading

Wild Side: A jump start on spring this year

April 12, 2012 in River Falls Journal

December, 2011 through March, 2012 was a remarkably wimpy winter. We received only about 22 inches of snow. The snow cover was discontinuous, there were few nights below zero and our usual three months of winter were shortened by about a month. Continue Reading

Wild Side: Migrating birds welcome friends in the south

March 7, 2012 in Pierce County Herald

The Audubon Society has sponsored a Christmas bird count for 112 years. Christmas Bird Count data from all over the country has revealed a northward trend in winter distribution for a number of bird species associated with the general warming of winter in North America over the last several decades. Continue Reading

Wild Side: A startling view of North America from space

February 17, 2012 in River Falls Journal

In 1966, the author Stewart Brand lobbied the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to release photos of the Earth from outer space. The crew of the Apollo 8 mission was the first to orbit the moon and to see the whole Earth. They took the famous photo of the partially-illuminated Earth rising over the surface of the moon. That photo graced the cover of Brand’s eclectic Whole Earth Catalog in 1968. Continue Reading

Wild Side: A startling view of North America from space

February 15, 2012 in Pierce County Herald

In 1966, the author Stewart Brand lobbied the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to release photos of the Earth from outer space. The crew of the Apollo 8 mission was the first to orbit the moon and to see the whole Earth. They took the famous photo of the partially-illuminated Earth rising over the surface of the moon. That photo graced the cover of Brand’s eclectic Whole Earth Catalog in 1968. Continue Reading

Wild Side: Monumental trees

February 8, 2012 in Pierce County Herald

Orion dancing across the sky on a clear winter night is beautiful. The light from most of the stars in the Orion constellation has travelled over 800 years at 186,000 miles a second to reach us. It’s humbling to know that we are less than one billionth of a light year tall. Continue Reading

Wildside: October beach bums

October 26, 2011 in Pierce County Herald

I’m not a fan of weddings and funerals, but to maintain domestic tranquillity, we traveled to northern Michigan to attend a wedding of Carol’s niece. When we left home last week most of the leaves had blown off the trees. Following Wisconsin Highway 64 to the northeast corner of the state, we reached the Lake Michigan shore at Marinette. Continue Reading

Wild cucumbers climb high this year

September 16, 2011 in River Falls Journal

A neighbor called last week asking if an extra-terrestrial plant species has invaded recently. He said that rapidly-growing vines with maple-like leaves, tightly coiled tendrils, many small white flowers and spiky seed pods are growing all over his trees. Continue Reading

Wild Side: Brook trout thriving in restored Pine Creek

August 31, 2011 in Pierce County Herald

Eastern brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) are the native trout in eastern North America. Brook trout are char, related to lake trout, bull trout, Dolly Varden and Arctic char. They are adapted to cold, clear, well-oxygenated streams, lakes and ponds. Continue Reading

Wildside: Seeking refuge by paddling

August 3, 2011 in Pierce County Herald

The recent extremely hot weather has driven many of us to seek refuge on the cool water. The Lower St. Croix River and most northern Wisconsin lakes swarm with big motor boats, water skiers and jet skis on the weekends. Many of us seek quieter surroundings; floating on a remote lake listening to loons, drifting down a river watching the islands slide by, or navigating through rapids when paddling a canoe or a kayak. Paddling is a sport that can carry you to beautiful places away from the crowds and put you in touch with the pulse of the earth. Continue Reading