Find Local Nature


If I want to Return To the Earth, I need to locate some undeveloped, open land to explore. Here are a few simple ideas for finding some: 

1 - maps. Paper or digital. Locate some maps of your local area and look for patches of green - the usual color used by cartographers to delineate park lands. 


2 - Apps - the only app I have found helpful is "Oh Ranger! Park Finder" which makes use of your location to provide you with green spaces, National Parks, State Parks, County Parks, City Parks - all parks. It is easy to use. I recommend it. However, it lists all open green spaces - even public school fields — so before you travel to a location "Oh Ranger!" has recommended, see if it is a park or a soccer field. A soccer field will work, but may be less interesting and potent than a more wild piece of Earth. 

3 - Local Environmental Organizations - Through contacting land trusts, Sierra Club chapters, Audubon Society chapters or similar groups you can learn about the great places to hike and explore in your locality. 

4 - Friends and humans - talk to the people in your life and ask them if they know of any beautiful natural areas to explore nearby. 

5 - retail outdoor stores - most employees of such stores have ideas of where to go - they are adventurous people that often enjoy showcasing their knowledge of the outdoors. 

You might think that you need to go to an especially beautiful or dramatic place but that is not the case. All you really need is a little bit of earth and the willingness to connect. Do not worry too much about finding the perfect place to engage in mindful natural connection. It is more important that you get out and do it somewhere. 

Do some research and find a few areas in your community that will work for you to engage in your Return to Earth. Maybe find one near your home and another near school or work.