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North Woods Field Exploration: Woods, Bogs and More

Course Overview

The beauty of the North Shore is especially evident in the spring and early summer, when the wide variety of habitats in the neighborhood burst into bloom and are filled with birdsong. Spend three days exploring the natural world on the doorstep of Grand Marais, discovering the ecology of maple hardwood forests, pine forests, boreal forests, streams, bogs and fens. Students will learn to identify trees, shrubs, wildflowers, birds, insects and other animals, and begin to understand how each of these habitats are connected within the larger North Shore ecosystem. Enjoy three days of fresh air and field exploration guided by naturalist Margie Menzies of Sugarloaf Cove Nature Center and biologist Lisa Tracy. Students will work with taxonomic keys, as well as electronic tools like iNaturalist and SEEK to help identify items in the field, and add to their knowledge base of the living and non-living key components to our beloved North Woods habitats


  • Plan to provide your own transportation, as carpooling is not possible.
  • Bag lunch to eat in the field for Days 2 and 3; snacks
  • Appropriate and varied footwear: good walking shoes and knee boots or water shoes for water exploration. Note that the trails are uneven, but not especially strenuous hiking.
  • Clothing appropriate to be outdoors in a variety of weather conditions: lots of layers, rain gear, long pants and long sleeves
  • Bug season will be starting: a headnet, insect repellent, billed hat for under your headnet

Optional Tools

  • A journal for logging your finds
  • camera
  • binoculars
  • hand lenses

Currently Scheduled Sessions

No sessions currently scheduled for this course.