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Afield and Afloat

Great Plains Connections with Julie Geiser – Empowering Women at BOW Workshop

The 22nd annual Becoming an Outdoors Woman (BOW) workshop was held last weekend at the 4-H camp near Halsey, NE. I write about this event every year after the workshop, not because writing is part of what I do, but because I am passionate about every aspect of the weekend and empowering women to get outdoors and experience all the wonderful activities and beautiful things in nature – all in hopes that they will pass their new knowledge on to …

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Midland Musings with Jenny Nguyen: Ponca Expo School Day

I attended my first Missouri River Expo a couple weeks ago, and I had a great time! For those who have never been (which may not be many of you), the Expo runs for 3 days in September — Friday, Saturday and Sunday. While Saturday and Sunday are open to the public and are the busiest days, Friday is only open to elementary schools. Nearly a thousand 5th graders this year received a private sneak peek before the general public …

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Panhandle Passages: Stopping to Smell ‘Em

I’ll admit, I’ve never figured myself to be much of a flower guy. Prior to this year, my nature photography has gravitated toward wildlife. I’m guilty of zooming past countless beautiful plants and flowers to fill the frame with whatever bird, mammal, reptile or other critter catches my eye. I’ve rarely stopped to shoot, let alone smell and identify, the roses. That’s changed. As nature photography, in a more broad sense, has become a big part of my job description, …

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Great Plains Connections with Julie Geiser – The Call of the Male Cicada

This call of the male cicada is unmistakable this time of year, when cicadas or more commonly called locusts emerge from their underground homes to breed. Starting in mid-summer and continuing for a couple months the songs of the cicadas’ can be heard for miles. There are several species of cicadas in Nebraska, but the most common cicada near my home town of North Platte is the Dog Day or Annual Cicada. These cicadas make their appearance during the “Dog …

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Panhandle Passages: Lessons from Star Party Country

I’d never heard of the Niobrara River, let alone canoed it. It was the early ‘80s in southwestern Nebraska and Dad had caught wind of people enjoying canoe trips down the scenic Niobrara. So, he borrowed a canoe from someone in McCook, strapped it to the top of his old Pontiac and drove us up Highway 83 for an adventure. My sister and I, still in elementary school, surely had a lot of questions along the way. I remember wondering …

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Great Plains Connections with Julie Geiser – July was a Busy Month

Wow July was a busy month – I put on some serious miles traveling across southwest Nebraska, but I experienced some pretty cool stuff along the way. Nebraska Game and Parks Commission hosted the first annual Carp-O-Rama at Lake Maloney, south of North Platte, which was a huge hit and gave people in attendance a new perspective on carp, carp fishing, and eating carp. Catching carp was only part of the day – once a carp was caught anglers learned …

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My Kind of Weather

When you grow up in Western Nebraska and move east, you never really get used to the heat and humidity, you just learn to live with it. And you learn that when the temperatures turn unseasonably cool in July or August, you get out and enjoy them. I did just that last weekend, taking advantage of gorgeous weather to photograph two stories: one on Wagon Train Lake and one on tanking, with this stop on the Elkhorn River. Not only …

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Panhandle Passages: Closer to Home

My job with the Game and Parks commission and NEBRASKAland has taken me to some incredible places throughout the Panhandle and beyond in the first six months. With more than 40 Commission properties within 160 miles of my home, there is a lot to see and photograph in this spacious region. That being said, it seems some unbeatable travel opportunities await me right before my nose. While I join others in the desire to set up camp at a location …

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Great Plains Connections with Julie Geiser – Gallagher Canyon – the tucked away SRA

I have lived in Nebraska my entire life – and am amazed at the places I come across that I never knew existed. Gallagher Canyon is one of those remote, beautiful places that is tucked away, yet unbelievably easy to find. Located south of Cozad, Nebraska, the drive is south on Highway 21 to the Gallagher Canyon State Recreation Area (SRA) sign, this is where your trip will get interesting – you may feel like you are headed in the …

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Panhandle Passages: Recording Our Assets

One of Nebraska’s great assets is the variety of animals that can be found when traveling from one end of the state to the other. Just as the landscape changes as one heads westward, so do the set of creatures one is likely to see. Within a short drive from Chadron I have a fair chance of seeing pronghorn, mule deer, elk and the occasional swift fox or golden eagle. And, of course, one of the state’s most prominent media …

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