Nature Topic: Meadow Voles
Nature Topic: Black Flies
Nature Topic: Gray Fox
Nature Topic: Common Strawberry
Nature Topic: Great Blue Heron
Nature Topic: Yellow Clintonia / Bluebead Lily
Spring Coming-out Season for Bears
Leave No Trace Principles
Late Fall Hiking: How to Hike in Comfort and Safety
A Fascination with Fire Towers in New Hampshire and Vermont
Why Leaves Change Color in the Fall
Gear: The Ten Essentials
Full Gear List of What to Take With You on the Trail
Hiking Safely Through the Seasons in the Mountains
If You Get Lost: How to Self-Rescue
Alpine Zone Preservation
hikeSafe: Hiker Responsibility Code
E. Ann Poole
Ah, Spring! Soft breezes, fragrant flowers and that perennial spoiler: the black fly. Specifically, the female black fly which requires blood for the development of her eggs. More than just annoying, these biting bloodsuckers inflict painful welts on their victims. They are attracted to carbon dioxide, a product of respiration, but they are also attracted by dark colored clothing, perfumes and sweat.
Think you can out-run them? Escape is nearly impossible. Black flies can fly up to ten miles in search of a warm meal. Bug spray? Recent findings indicate that DEET-based repellants may actually attract greater numbers.
And yet, the return of the black fly should be celebrated! Black flies indicate good water quality, are food for swallows and phoebes, and pollinate wild blueberries. So smile as you button-up and don that head net knowing that, in a few short weeks, they will die down and you will be enjoying the sweet fruits of their labor.
E. Ann Poole is a Consulting Ecologist & Environmental Planner in Hillsborough, NH. She can be reached by calling 603.478.1178 or via the web at
Welcome hikers, walkers, and snowshoers!
This site is geared towards those that love to be outside. Whether you're looking for outdoor fitness and recreation or wishing to find peace and serenity through nature - we have suggestions for you.
Our free hiking trail guide resource offers everything from short, easy, nature walks to challenging mountain climbs above timberline in the alpine zone. The detailed trail reports with hike descriptions, trail maps, photos, and driving directions serve as a great planning tool. Many of the trail guides are based on hikes in the beautiful White Mountains of New Hampshire.
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HikeNewEngland.com covers hikes in Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.
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