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Hiking With A Teaching Objective: Preservation and Conservation of the Tallgrass Prairie

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Having hiked the Konza Prairie since the late 80's, its been a wish that I could someday spend time has a volunteer doing something to help preserve this native, tallgrass environment. This wish came to fruition last fall, while during a hike, I had a chance meeting with the head of the Konza Environmental Education Program (KEEP) who was with a master docent. We talked about my interest in the prairie and it was suggested that I should enroll in the docent training classes. I remember the unbelievable feeling I had walking away from that conversation. My excitement built up during the hour long drive home and my wife knew something was up. Long story short ....... the excitement carried over to her and she jumped in for the ride. We're both so thankful and grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the Konza Prairie family. Every outing is rewarding and exciting. What we've learned, and are passing along to others, is that the preservation and conservation of the tallgrass prairie is important for the generations to come.

Jan and I leading a hike through Kings Creek on the Konza Praire where these youngsters were learning about the ecosystem there.

Wildlife study hike on the Nature Trail. The shrub, stream, and prairie ecosystems.

We believe that it's important that children be exposed to nature and the various ecosystems on our planet. Being a docent lets Jan and I use our love for hiking to share and teach others that it's important to care for and appreciate our environment.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Very cool!! Maybe we can plan it so we are up there near Salina or Manhattan some Saturday night at a hotel, and can get to the prairie early on a sunday to walk through it?? With the weather changing towards winter, might be better to wait until nicer weather in the spring, although this fall weather is pretty nice now. I hadn't really realized how long and narrow the Tallgrass area was, as it does stretch down southward quite a ways - at least, enough so we pass through parts of it on the I-35 Tollroad heading out of El Dorado and Emporia I guess it is. I rarely go that way though, since my husband and I end up needing to go to Oklahoma these days to take care of his folks' estate (trying to get it ready to sell.). My ex and I went through the Tallgrass via the turnpike all the time when we were married, because his mom was up there in Louisburg (love me some apple cider donuts, oh yes!!! I stay away from there now!!).
    878 days ago
    Great activity you're doing!!
    1405 days ago
    Will be leading a group of European undergraduates tomorrow on the Konza. Not knowing much about this group, I can only hope that they leave with some understanding of the prairie environment. .... After an early morning hike along the Nature Trail, we'll then head out for a tour of the Bison Loop. One of the exciting things about this excursion is that these European students have never seen live bison. I'm pretty eager to get them out there just to see their excitement.

    1732 days ago
    What a great service you are doing! emoticon
    1739 days ago
    Very nice pictures. Great way for you & Jan to enjoy your day, give back and bond all at once. Love how she joined at the last minutes like that. Gotta love a gal that enjoys mother nature!
    1739 days ago
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