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Hike with John Bates, Northwoods Naturalist

  • Big Bay Town Park (map)
Spring Melt at Big Bay Town Park

Spring Melt at Big Bay Town Park

Hike with John Bates, Northwoods Naturalist 

Sunday, May 24th
9:00 – 11:00 AM

Meet at Town Park Pavilion then on to the Big Bay Ridge Trail.

Late May marks the return of nearly all of our neotropical songbirds from their wintering grounds in Central and South America. They come back in full voice and brilliant color ready to establish new territories and successfully breed.

The Northwoods also supports an amazing diversity of trees, shrubs, wildflowers, and other plants that help make any hike beautiful.

Then there are all the frogs calling, the insects hatching, the mammals raising their young — it's a cornucopia of life!

This hike will be an opening to whatever offers itself that morning.


John Bates, of Trails North Naturalist Guide Service, is the author of seven books, and a contributor to seven others, all of which focus on the natural history of the Northwoods.


John won the 2006 Ellis/Henderson Outdoor Writing Award from the Council for Wisconsin Writers for his book Graced by the Seasons: Spring and Summer in the Northwoods.

John’s poems have also appeared in five different art/science collaborations, several of which have traveled nationally.

He’s worked as a naturalist in Wisconsin’s Northwoods for 26 years, leading an array of trips all designed to help people further understand the remarkable diversity and beauty of nature, and our place within it.

He has also served on the Board of Trustees for the Wisconsin Nature Conservancy and the Wisconsin Humanities Council, and now serves on the Board of the River Alliance of Wisconsin and the Board of the Northwoods Land Trust.

John and his wife Mary live on the Manitowish River in Iron County where they raised two daughters.

This program is made possible by the generous support of the Apostle Islands Area Community Fund.