Only 32 more days until Spring arrives! Only a few weeks after that the first work weekend will take place on Raven-Wolf Nature Sanctuary. For some of us, that means checking to make sure we have everything we need to work and camp on site. For those who have never been there or may have never been in a more primitive camping situation, you may be wondering what the necessities are for such an event.
Spring on the Land is unpredictable. “April showers bring May flowers.” It can be snowy, rainy and/or warm. A good warm coat and a sturdy pair of boots or work shoes will serve you well. If you get cold or chilled easily, you may even want to consider a pair of thermal underwear. Bringing along a rain poncho is always a good idea just in case those April showers show up. Warm gloves are a good idea but so are work gloves to keep your hands clean and protected.
Raven-Wolf does have poison ivy and poison oak on it. If you are allergic to either or both, you may want to start a regime of vitamin C to boost your immune system about a week before coming. Be sure to pack calamine lotion or any other treatments you use for such occasions, along with a small first-aid kit and something for headaches and just plain aches and pains from working hard.
If you’re like me, you don’t want to spend a great deal of time cooking. Bring foods that are easy: canned chili, baked beans, chunky soups, hot dogs that can be cooked over an open fire, etc. All these, and more, are quick and satisfying. Which also means you need to pack utensils for cooking and eating, matches to light a fire, and drinking water (until we get the hand-pumped well retested). We ask that whatever you pack in, you pack back out with you.
We’re hoping to have at least one “potluck” on these weekends, but that’s all very much in the planning stages right now. Keep watching for more news on this.
Be aware that if you plan on camping overnight, you will need a tent and a good warm sleeping bag. The few cabins that we have on the Land are in dire need of cleaning and repair so they will probably not be available for use.
Being a nature sanctuary, there are wild animals on the Land. Although there are no bear or large wild cats, there are raccoons, deer, squirrel and bats. In the case of the raccoons, you will want to make your food supply unreachable either by placing it in your car at night, with the windows rolled all the way up, or in a storage trunk or container that is “child-proof”. Raccoons are very clever and can open many types of containers when they suspect food is inside.
We ask that you don’t bring any pets or animals with you. Our first priority is the animals that are already living and using Sanctuary Land. Besides, these are work weekends for humans. Bringing your pets along isn’t fair to them or to the other humans who may have allergies or fears concerning them.
Although plans for the future include composting toilets for several sites on the Land, right now we have outhouses. These also need cleaning up and fixing up. Something is better than nothing, but bring toilet paper with you!
Speaking of all this cleaning and fixing up, if you have any tools such as rakes, shovels, saws, etc. that you would be willing to bring with you, we would greatly appreciate it. This goes for chainsaws, weed-whackers, and lawn mowers as well. Right now, until we get firmly on our feet again, we will take all the help you are willing to lend us!
It’s not all work though. We do have fun, especially after the day’s work is done. We gather around campfires to talk, laugh and get to know each other. I’ve made many a friend around those fires and gotten to better know the ones I was already acquainted with.
When you come to the Land, be sure to stop at the registration area – just inside the gate on the left-hand side, to sign in. The gates will be closed and locked at night to keep curiosity-seekers out, usually around 8 p.m.
For those who have never been to the Land before, you may request directions by sending a SASE to: Raven-Wolf Nature Sanctuary, P.O. Box 61, New Straitsville, OH 43766.
If you have any questions, please feel free to send an email to RavenWolfNature@aol.com We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
Until we meet on the Land…