Bucket Lists: If it’s Nature, Just GO

What is on your bucket list? I would love to hear about your nature must-do lists.

I would recommend old grown Coast Redwoods for anyone’s list. I’ve never seen a photo that actually gave a really good sense of what an old growth redwood forest experience is like. So, just GO!

Although such forests typically include trees that are 2000 years old, they may be threatened by climate change. They only grow in a narrow strip along in the coastal fog belt. 96% of old growth redwood was logged as it is a terrific building material. An untold amount thousand+year old trees went into building houses San Francisco and San Jose and other Bay Area cities and towns.

The recent massive, massive fires throughout the West Coast have impressed on me that the few magnificent forests left are at risk of climate change. Though these trees may survive even fierce fires, it is not so clear to me they can survive a warmer dryer climate.

I grew up frequently visiting the giant redwood parks. The giant trees were amazing hobbit houses to us, as past fires hollowed out the giants into room-size hollows. The hollow in this tree is massive - big enough for several adults and more kids.

Video of the interior “parlor” in the Fremont Tree of Henry Cowell Redwoods:

Big Basin State Park with acres and acres of old growth coast redwoods burned up last month in the CZU fire. There is hope that some of the older trees may survive, but all the historic and quaint park buildings are gone.

Henry Cowell came that close to the same fate. You can see the ashes and burnt leaves that from fire have littered the forest… it is a miracle it did not burn, too.

So, just go. If it’s special, go soon.


Would love to, but financial concerns and other responsibilities keep me in place. :(


Not sure where you live, but it could be tough to travel to the West Coast during a pandemic. Yes, especially now when the safest way to travel is in an RV.

But, perhaps there is an amazing nature site somewhere within a day’s drive of you?

I would love to hear about folks’ bucket-list or even semi-bucklist worthy nature sites.

I’m not sure Customs and Border Patrol would accept “I want to see a tree” as a valid reason for essential travel and entry to the US.


Tough times…

Hmmm, Niagara Falls and that environ is quite impressive as a bucket list item?

30-40 minutes from my house.

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BTW, I revised my original post as it did not come out sounding the way I intended. I intended it to be a sharing post, but I pushed a bit hard for my local favorite. I am hoping to read about other amazing natural places.


Every nature reserve, in fact I’m shy to write to them to get an access, as iNatting doesn’t sound as a good reason to get to a territory with a strict access. There’s an umbrella project about all nature territories in the country and I’d like to be a big contributor in at least major projects in it.
My main aim is to spend next year documenting the nature of Karelia and Leningrad Oblast’, I’m in love with northern nature and it gets little attention on iNat right now, some rare plants have no spots and even many common ones too.


My main aim is to spend next year documenting the nature of Karelia and Leningrad Oblast’, I’m in love with northern nature

By strange chance, Finland and Leningrad are among the few places I’ve visited in Europe. I thought it was pretty wonderful. Sadly, I was just a teenager and did not appreciate it the same way I might now. I did get to backpack a little.

Southern California is at the top of my list for US places. With the desert in Imperial Co and various other impressive habitats, it’s a must-visit for Buprestid enthusiasts like me.

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I want to visit Finland a lot too, living almost whole my life right at the border with it but never had a chance to visit. Karelia has similar nature with Finland, but it’s less “urbanised” and there’re more places without roads and people. I have similar feelings about Egypt, having doves eating from your table and so on, and all I have now is 5 photos from there.


That happens in Israel too. Plenty of Streptopilia senegalensis wandering around anywhere crumbs can be found.
It’s so funny to realize that a perfectly boring, maybe even annoying, everyday occurrence in one place seems so cool to someone from far away…

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I don’t even know which species it was, for me those were unusual pigeons.) I got used to Streptopelia decaocto in Crimea (and many other species that were ne to me, like Sternula albifrons), so I know how in two days something new and exiting becomes ordinary.
And my current love is gulls, and seeing Ichthyaetus species that live there and that I could see all Larus that could spend the winter there… shame.

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I might have thought that the Imperial Valley was a rare choice for a Bucket-list place. But, then it turns out I really, really loved the Anza Borrego Desert, which is not that far from there.

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Off the top of my head:
Green Swamp Preserve in North Carolina, I want to see some carnivorous plants, especially VFTs in their native habitat.

Wolf Road Prairie just outside Chicago, Illinois. Big, virtually undisturbed native prairie.

Anton Valley, Panama Not a preserve, but I had a friend who is no longer in this world who often shared photos of all sorts of native wildlife, plants and insects mainly, from his little section of the town. This one will be more of a personal pilgrimage than a bucket-list addition.

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I knew people would post wonderful places I never heard about. Wow! Green Swamp Preserve is on the Bob Vila top 20 (my mom adored Bob Vila).

Haha, for insects, the weirdest places tend to be the best!

One item on my nature bucket list is to see the total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024. It will be visible in the Niagara Falls area. While I am there I could get a Canvasback or a Black-headed Gull. And of course see the falls.


I blogged about many years ago, and the list is largely still accurate today. To summarize:
Zodiacal Light
Nocturnal Rainbow (NOT the same as halo around the moon!)
St. Elmo’s Fire
An Uninhabited Oceanic Island
An Unexplored Wilderness
An Unassimilated Indigenous People (may skip that one for ethical reasons!)
Ancient Ruins
The Tepuis of Venezuela
Ratites in the Wild
Birds-of-Paradise in the Wild

Link to the blog:

I could list many, many more.

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Some places I would likely to see or return to:

Bruce Peninsula (return to)
Manitoulin Island
Pukaskwa National Park
Barron Canyon Trail
Bay of Fundy

I am actually not that fussy about where I end up because in any new place or great places you have been to before there will always be something interesting to see. Even in my own neighbourhood where I do day trips from North Bay, Ontario, I still find interesting new places sometimes, even though I have explored hundreds of places close to home. One of the more recent discoveries locally is the Talon Chutes. Magnificent Bryozoan, Lake Sponge and cliff ferns that are not Rock Polypoly were highlights.