Rocky Mountain National Park Timelapse: 100 Years of National Parks

Screen Shot 2016-08-26 at 10.06.04 PM

Here’s a timelapse series I took yesterday at Rocky Mountain National Park to celebrate 100 years of service and conservation by the National Park Service. Admission to most parks in the U.S. is free this weekend. WELL DONE. And hey…If you like the video, share it! Will Burcher is a former police officer and current author of “The GAIAD,” a story of ancient secrets not quite forgotten and the positive power of global perspective. He lives and works in Colorado, USA. SUBSCRIBE for a chance to WIN A signed edition of The GAIAD. Join the conversation. EARTH. SPACE. INSPIRATION. EVERY 10th subscriber will receive a print edition of THE GAIAD, a new science fiction novel, signed by the author. Subscribers will also receive a 20% discount on the book—our thanks for being part of a conversation that WANTS TO BE HAD.    

The Nature Conservancy Colorado

Which way do we go? The Nature Conservancy Colorado is trying to keep places like this (Aiken Canyon, near Colorado Springs) protected and available for future generations.

“Our natural resources are at the heart of our quality of life in Colorado—from the fresh water we drink and the clean air we breathe to our economic prosperity and world-renowned recreational opportunities. But Colorado’s environment continues to face many challenges. Our population is expected to nearly double by 2050. Increased needs for food, water and energy will further strain Colorado’s natural systems.” —Carlos Fernandez, Director of The Nature Conservancy in Colorado I BELIEVE IN CONSERVATION. It is the most simple, effective way to ensure a balance between human economic activity and the needs of the natural environment. I am a strong advocate of the idea that “we” (humans, humanity, corporations, government, Wal-Mart) have utilized (or exploited) enough of the natural world for our purposes. We should now be seeking balance. The most glaringly obvious way to accomplish this is to set land aside, to restrain ourselves, to stand up … READ MORE…

VIDEO: Florida’s Forgotten Coast

Screen Shot 2016-05-14 at 4.12.18 PM
This post is part 6 of 6 of the series Florida's Forgotten Coast

This post is part 6 of 6 of the series Florida’s Forgotten Coast Will Burcher is a former police officer and current author of “The GAIAD,” a story of ancient secrets not quite forgotten and the positive power of global perspective. He lives and works in Colorado, USA. SUBSCRIBE for a chance to WIN A signed edition of The GAIAD. Join the conversation. EARTH. SPACE. INSPIRATION. EVERY 10th subscriber will receive a print edition of THE GAIAD, a new science fiction novel, signed by the author. Subscribers will also receive a 20% discount on the book—our thanks for being part of a conversation that WANTS TO BE HAD.    

The Florida Wildlife Corridor

FF Map
This post is part 5 of 6 of the series Florida's Forgotten Coast

This post is part 5 of 6 of the series Florida’s Forgotten Coast   THIS SERIES BEGAN WITH A QUESTION. It was born from a thought I had while jogging an empty beach along the Gulf the first day I arrived on the Forgotten Coast. The uniqueness of the area had already struck me, obviously and immediately apparent from the beginning. The natural-ness, the ubiquity of the birds on the wing, the wildlife, the native plants—all these things seemed new, experienced in Florida only once before during a trip to the Everglades. My question was simple, but embodied others that came with it in a cascade. Is the Forgotten Coast unique? Is it “natural?” Has development been balanced with a respect for natural environments, for native habitats, for biologically active and unique areas, such as those presented by the biomes of this place? If it is presently—balanced—can this situation be sustained? … READ MORE…

Prodigious

DSC_0033 copy
This post is part 3 of 6 of the series Florida's Forgotten Coast

This post is part 3 of 6 of the series Florida’s Forgotten CoastVines below! (disclaimer) These are all small, relatively low-res cuts of a larger video I’m editing… THE LIFE HERE, the abundance. It is prodigious. My first night here was warm and wet and clear. I was staying at a house surrounded by acres of woods outside the small town of Sopchoppy, about 10 miles inland from the coast and known for its annual (yeah!) “Worm Gruntin’ Festival.” I stepped outside around 9PM to look upward—at a sky free of clouds, of stratospheric aircraft, of anything but stars and the familiar galactic haze of the Milky Way. The clarity, the visual lucidity of the night was striking—the scene in stark contrast to the nearly terrifying, natural din of the surrounding forest. The tumult came from every direction. Owls hooted, bullfrogs croaked and rumbled, their smaller cousins in the trees … READ MORE…

Dark Water

Tannic water, Ochlockonee Bay.
This post is part 2 of 6 of the series Florida's Forgotten Coast

This post is part 2 of 6 of the series Florida’s Forgotten Coast THE WATER HERE is dark. The color of black tea, or even coffee—on first encounter it can look dirty or even foul. It isn’t. The water of multiple, major rivers flows into the bays defining the Forgotten Coast. It is tannic for the most part—tinted dark by chemical processes inherent to the decaying of vegetation—it is rich with organic matter, rich with the stuff of life. The color of the water is testament to the biological productivity of an inland Florida to the north—and the effluent of that productivity flows down and out, meeting the fluid of the Gulf in places like Ochlockonee Bay, Apalachee Bay, Apalachicola Bay. It is in stark contrast to the clear water of the popular Gulf beaches to the west and south. On my first encounter with it, on a warm day in … READ MORE…

The Forgotten Coast

Salt marshes abound. Rich in life, they're equally rich in beauty.
This post is part 1 of 6 of the series Florida's Forgotten Coast

This post is part 1 of 6 of the series Florida’s Forgotten Coast APPROXIMATELY 40 MILES EAST of Panama City, Florida there exists a special place. Geographically close to other areas of the Florida shoreline known affectionately by some as the “Emerald Coast” (and not so affectionately by others as the “Redneck Riviera”), this area remains separate and distinct. The beaches are not as expansive, the water not as clear, but the natural soul of a state more often bought and sold, remains here. This is Real Florida, as they say. This is the Forgotten Coast. Though some locals might argue the exact boundaries of this place, the 100 mile stretch along US-98 beginning at Mexico Beach and ending at St. Marks, is a general and approximate definition. Strangely enough, what is more distinct than a numerical configuration on a map is the feel of this place, the sense of it … READ MORE…

“Immense Journey” by Loren Eiseley—A Review

Immense Journey

 5/5 Stars “We are one of many appearances of the thing called Life; we are not its perfect image, for it has no image except Life, and life is multitudinous and emergent in the stream of time.” —Loren Eiseley When it was first published in 1977 it was marketed as a science book for the nonscientist, as something written by Stephen Jay Gould or Stephen Hawking would be today. This categorization is simplistic, however. This is not a book about science, merely. It is not an attempt by an expert to explain some concept to the public. “Immense Journey” is a meditation. It is a work of spirit and of soul, as much as it of anything else. In poetic, musical prose he speaks of his own encounters with the natural world over the course of a notable career in varied natural fields. These encounters are sometimes small and seemingly … READ MORE…

A Green Caplitalist’s Manifesto

SmallHeronEverglades

cap·i·tal·ism ˈkapədlˌizəm/ noun an economic and political system in which a country’s trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state.  green ɡrēn/ adjective relating to the natural world and the impact of human activity on its condition. I am an environmentalist. I am also a capitalist—one who believes in the rightness of a free market economy. The two are not mutually exclusive. In direct opposition to others who claim to be supporters of libertarian market ideals, I will state without reservation that human activity is absolutely responsible for a warming planet, and that our economic activities have drastic impacts on the wider environment. We reside in the Anthropocene Epoch—a period of future history defined as any other geological epic would be, only one marked indiscreetly by the negative external effects of our consumptions, wastes, destructions. This kind of environmental degradation is not inherent, however, … READ MORE…

SPACE and Environmentalism in The GAIAD

NASA-Apollo8-Dec24-Earthrise

I recently had a conversation with an environmentalist author whose mind I very much respect, concerning my assertions on space (and specifically manned spaceflight), and it got me thinking. Some, who haven’t read The GAIAD yet, might be surprised that space figures prominently in the story. This is certainly my fault—putting the rear profile of a long-haired, well-muscled shirtless man holding an obsidian-tipped spear on the cover. But really, space in The GAIAD is represented as a reflection of my own personal beliefs: we as a species must continue to move outward and explore the ultimate frontier—for the good of ourselves and for the good of our planet. My friend argued that the space program, with its massive financial and energetic expenditures (as well as the atmospheric pollution resulting from rocket launches), is a luxury that humanity cannot currently afford. I respectfully disagreed with him. The environmental effects of space-related … READ MORE…