We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
To get a taste of central Ohio, we stayed at the very pleasant Honey Run Inn outside Millersburg in Holmes County, the heart of Ohio Amish country where every other name seems to be Yoder. Excellent dinner menu there, but pricey.
If you don't get lost, it's only a 45-minute beautiful country drive down to Gambier in Knox Co. Gotta watch out for your turns, though, on those nice two-lane county roads or you can end up far from your destination with no gas station anywhere.
When I visit a new area, I like to get a close-up feel for the woodlands and their outdoors, so I took a couple of early morning hikes up there in Holmes Co. I'd say the bird life and the tree life are similar that of southern New England, and the woodlands are similar hardwood forest - except that the density of nut and mast trees is remarkable: Walnut, Beech, various oaks, Hickory, Shagbark Hickory, Butternut, Ash. When you walk through the woods in late Oct. as I did, you hear the startling thunk of walnuts falling constantly. Also different - I saw no pines and no birch. Plenty of majestic Tulip Trees as one sees in southern New England, and Maples all over.
You cannot have familiarity with a woodland without knowing each tree, and I try to do so. Was mann weiss, mann sieht.
4000 years ago much of Ohio was short-grass prairie and full of Bison. A cooler, wetter climate since then has made possible the hillside woodlands of today (everything flat seems to be farmed) - plus there are no more Indians to burn the prairies to suppress woodland growth.
From the size of the trees, this patch of hilly woodland below was pasture 40 or 50 years ago. Why I did not see or hear lots of Wild Turkeys I do not know, but these woods definitely hold plenty of deer.
A few more snaps from my hikes in the morning drizzle below the fold -
Being from there i have a true love for the rural parts. If you get the chance, try out Hocking Hills and John Bryan State Parks. At JB there is Clifton Gorge, which is just stunning. There is also mill there. We used to go there every fall for a family outing. Mom would load up on fresh ground grains and we never ate store bought bread all winter.
I agree with Heather - thanks for these pics. I am the fifth generation born in a 25-mile area in Ohio, but I have lived in the Southwest since I was in elementary school. It has been too long since I went back to visit, and these pics make me want to head back right now!
The interesting thing to me about your photos is that the college's public buildings are such a beautiful demonstration of the architectural style of the period. And the setting itself is so lovely. In its way, Kenyon is as beautiful as "the dreaming spires of Oxford," just of a later, and very American style. I have visited Ohio only once, in Columbus for a trustees meeting of the American Orchid Society, but I was enchanted with its beauty and charm, and absolute 'American-ness'. Part of it is that I still miss the northern part of our great country where I was born and brought up, which has real autumn, as you show in your pictures, Bird Dog. Down here in Texas, it's summer-summer-summer and then suddenly winter, and not much of that.
Thanks for the beautiful pictures, and the memories.
Nice to see so many other Buckeyes commenting. the SE area of Ohio and along the Ohio west toward Cinn. is flooded with turkey, deer, a few bear have migrated in from WVa, and the grouse are making a come-back. The Amish have established another "outpost" in Adams County (southern border county)with quilts, bakegoods, and woodworking sold along the Appalachian Highway. Anyone from western New England would feel at home with the terrain of SE Ohio.
I am a transplant from Western Pa. to Chillicothe, Ohio,which is about one hour south of Columbus. The turkeys are in my back yard! We have a flock of 8 of them early in the morning and in the evening. We sit on the back deck and watch them and the herd of 5 deer that think they own the neighborhood.
When I get homesick for Pa. I head down to Hocking Hills; the trees and big rocks are very similar to much of the rural area east of Pittsburgh in Armstrong County where I grew up.