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Richard Higgins on board

PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2017 3:03 pm
by Rihiggins
I'm Richard Higgins of Concord, Massachusetts, reporting for duty as a tree hunter and observer/admirer of others who do the same, especially any who walk, or attempt to walk, in the footsteps of the Bigfoot of big trees, Bob Leverett.

I have credible record as a lover of trees, which I will adduce later, but, in short, I have trees on my mind very often. I write about them. I photograph them. i research them. I shamefully flog my new book about them. They fill up my filing cabinets, hang from my walls, stare at me from the computer. I mention all this because I was nevertheless stopped in my tracks by Bob's simple line, somewhere on this website, "We are tree hunters." This struck me (and attests to Bob's skill as a writer, skill in writing being something that goes up as the number of words used goes down). It means to DO something concerning trees, not just cogitate about them. It means being in the woods or some place where trees grow (which really sends the number of words used down to zero) and to honor trees by noticing, investigating, exploring, appreciating and, yes, Bob, I was going to come to it, measuring them.

This is a noble enterprise. It certainly makes me want to go out there find an actual big tree, and darn if i don't already have a few leads.

That record of mine. Well, I'm not sure how credible it is but I have about 1800 of my own photographs of trees in my computer, a hobby that gives me profound joy, some 70 of which are included in my new book, "Thoreau and the Language of Trees," to be published April 4, 2017 by the University of California Press. The book is about Thoreau's deep connections to trees and how he responded to them as a naturalist, writer and poet, philosopher and social thinker, spiritual supplicant and, most important, as an individual human being who had a deep love and emotional attachment to trees.

The trees turned me into a photographer, lecturer and author, not an insubstantial transformation, but, as you know, they have far grander powers and capacities. I am pleased to track those powers with you.

Rich

Re: Richard Higgins on board

PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 8:53 am
by dbhguru
Rich,

Welcome aboard. Your presence will give us a boost in our discussions on trees and the people who love, study,  measure, write about, compose music for, and in general, associate themselves with along non-commercial lines. You are among friends.

Ents,


Rich's book on Thoreau is must reading. Rich understands Thoreau's connection to trees as none other do.

Bob

Re: Richard Higgins on board

PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 10:56 am
by AndrewJoslin
Welcome! Looking forward to seeing the book, sounds amazing. Since 2015 I've been living in Carlisle, Mass. One of my favorite local spots is the north end of Estabrook Woods. When I stand next to a particularly old yellow birch or red oak I like to think that Thoreau may have admired it as well. If you'd like to join in on some local tree exploring/measuring please send a PM. We're looking at upcoming Sunday to clinch a Massachusetts height champion Cucumber Magnolia in Northboro. There will be plenty of other measuring trips as well.
-AJ

Andrew Joslin
Carlisle, Massachusetts

Re: Re: Richard Higgins on board

PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 11:18 am
by Rihiggins
Andrew,
I am certainly aware of some your exploits (including the now dethroned Eastern MA white pine champ in Concord's Hapgood Town Forest) and appreciate your welcome. This Sunday is not good but count me in for others trips. I may even humbly suggest some big guys I have seen. Yes on Thoreau in "Easterbrooks Country," as he called it, though I believe his beloved Yellow Birch Swamp was more toward the southern end. But the northern end is less traveled, which is nice.
Thanks for your response.
Rich

Re: Re: Richard Higgins on board

PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2017 11:57 am
by AndrewJoslin
Rihiggins wrote:Andrew,
I am certainly aware of some your exploits (including the now dethroned Eastern MA white pine champ in Concord's Hapgood Town Forest) and appreciate your welcome. This Sunday is not good but count me in for others trips. I may even humbly suggest some big guys I have seen. Yes on Thoreau in "Easterbrooks Country," as he called it, though I believe his beloved Yellow Birch Swamp was more toward the southern end. But the northern end is less traveled, which is nice.
Thanks for your response.
Rich


I'm sure you know of some great ones. I'm not being entirely accurate when I say the northern end of Estabrook. I think of the Yellow Birch Swamp as just north of the Estabrook north/south halfway point. Birch I'm referring to is in a small grove west of the Yellow Birch Swamp labeled "Moraine Boulder Field" on the Estabrook Woods map. Very interesting spot with great tree species diversity along a small north/south esker.

Here's a photo of the fine yellow birch I'm referring to with Joan Maloof, posted previously but worth looking at again.
Image

-AJ