The Story of a Rock, a Bison, Theodore Roosevelt National Park, Wanderlust, and Summer Adventures Out West

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND This rock (all 9.9 ounces) fits perfectly into the palm of my hand. It was my constant companion when I solo hiked a portion of the 144-mile Maah Deh Hay Trail in Theodore Roosevelt National Park (TRNP). TRNP is wild and beautiful—buttes, badlands, and grasslands that overlook … Continue reading The Story of a Rock, a Bison, Theodore Roosevelt National Park, Wanderlust, and Summer Adventures Out West

A Painted Flag, Thoughts on the Invasion of Ukraine, and 9 Organizations That You Can Donate to in Support of the Ukrainian People

The criminal invasion of Ukraine by Russia has captivated, saddened, and disgusted me all week. How could something like this happen in 2022? But, sometimes, I think people—especially those of us living in the West—believe we have achieved some state of human enlightenment in which the Putins, Assads, and other dictators of the world (and … Continue reading A Painted Flag, Thoughts on the Invasion of Ukraine, and 9 Organizations That You Can Donate to in Support of the Ukrainian People

14 Amazing National Park Service Destinations for Spring and Summer Road Trips

BY ANDREW MORKES, FOUNDER OF NATURE IN CHICAGOLAND Planning a spring or summer road trip? If so, here are 14 of my favorite National Park Service destinations to check out. Six are located in the Midwest. Carlsbad Caverns National Park (New Mexico): More than 120 caves. The park features the largest colony (estimated at about 400,000) … Continue reading 14 Amazing National Park Service Destinations for Spring and Summer Road Trips

Would You Travel 6,200 Miles to Fight Evil?

That’s what Michigan resident Caleb Stevens did in 2017. The now 23-year-old, who spent two years at West Point, decided to join a Kurdish militia allied with the U.S. that was fighting ISIS in Syria. Yes, that ISIS. The one that beheads, burns, rapes, otherwise tortures, and kills people, and that once controlled large swathes … Continue reading Would You Travel 6,200 Miles to Fight Evil?

Visiting the Rose City in Jordan

I’m breaking the rules today at Nature in Chicagoland. Normally, I only write about destinations within a day’s drive of Chicago, but unless you have some sort of secret Elon Musk-hypersonic-technology, Petra, Jordan, is definitely not a day trip from Chicago. It’s definitely not even a weekend trip from Chicago. For crying out loud, it’s … Continue reading Visiting the Rose City in Jordan