Thursday, April 3, 2014


By: Big Al

When you're outside what do you listen to?

Grab a cup of coffee, or tea, sit back and LISTEN carefully.

The other day my wife was reading a book on music and something she said really hit me. It was “Can you hear the music”? I began to think on this thought for a while and then I reflected on my hiking and caching experiences. Many times while out hiking or caching I see people coming along the trails and as I look at them I see that they have these things hanging out of their ears. Now I know they seem to be enjoying themselves as they beebop along, but are they really? It seems that everyone wants to hear the latest hits, or listen to the newest movies, but they are missing out on some of the greatest music ever created.  Of course the music I’m talking about is the symphony of the outdoors.

As you walk along the trails listen to the sounds of the creek as it meanders along, or the call of the Rose Breasted Grossbeak as he tries to attract a mate. Do you hear the coos of the Mourning Doves as they talk back and forth to each other? If you listen hard enough you can even hear the clatter of the squirrel’s claws as they run up and down the trees. I’m sure too that after they’ve seen you they’ll start announcing to everyone in the woods that you’re there. At least they always do this to me during deer season.

Then as you approach the top of the hill you’ll feel the gentle breeze as it whisps along your face and you can hear the trees begin to talk as they sway back and forth. Once in a while you might even hear the distant gobble of a wild turkey; gobble, gobble gobble.

When I am out in the woods I try to get the kids to listen for different sounds that they hear and see if they can identify them. Sometimes it’s fun just to sit for a bit and see how many different sounds you can hear. Like the little mouse who’s crawling through the leaves and sqeaking to his mate for her to follow him. And there are countless times I’ve heard the beating of the drums that start out slow and then becomes faster and faster. Then you realize it’s the Ruffed Grouse who’s beating his wings as he stands atop of an old log calling to any young lady passing by. If your quiet you might even hear his mate as she slips away from the nest trying to pull your attention away from where she has been sitting.

What’s really neat is if you’re out first thing in the morning you’ll begin to hear those birds and animals as they wake up. Chick-a-dee, dee, dee. Chick-a-dee, dee, dee. Hoo-hoo-hoo-hoo says the Great Horned Owl. Listen, was that a buck snorting at us? Then there is always the little peep, peep, peep, of the spring peepers as they tell us spring is hear to stay.

Isn’t this music more along the lines of what we need to hear? Everyday you can put those things in your ears and listen to your version of whatever.
For once, while you're out in the woods, leave the mp3 player at home, leave the iPod in the car, and turn your cell phone to vibrate and listen for the greatest symphony you’ll ever hear. I’ll bet if you're quiet you might even here the special call of the Geocacher. It goes something like this: Wooohoooo, First-to-Find. Yeah, baby. (Dancing usually follows.)


Kim@Snug Harbor said...

Nice post Al and I totally agree. I love to listen to the sounds of nature. It's like God is talking to me.

Heather Cook (Lady-Magpie) said...

One of the best posts I've read, where do we prefer to be, caching in the centre of a town or out in the countryside listening to all of Gods sounds. I know what I love and try to get out and about as much as possible.

Can I give you another reason why I wouldn't be wearing earphones. As an older lone female cacher I like to know what is around me for safety reasons, I'm always checking around and about and keeping me eye's and ears alert.


Good Morning!
Super post BigAl! Such an important aesthetic of our sport yet so widely ignored! A wonderful Thirsty Thursday post that gets me "tuned into" nature! Thanks man!

Dave DeBaeremaeker said...

When I am out on a hike I sometimes thing I'd like to listen to some tunes, or a podcast. I never do tho, precisely for these reasons. Nature has an awesome soundtrack.

So I save my outdoor music listening to lawn mowing, and bike riding in town, where the only soundtrack is engines.

smithie23 said...

A few years ago I hiked to the top of Mount Tammany in New Jersey. Its peak overlooks the Delaware Water Gap and the craziness which is Interstate 80. It was an awesome feeling to reach the top, look down over the high way, and hear nothing but the wind whipping through the trees around me. Like Dave put it, nature does, indeed, have an awesome soundtrack.

Great post!

Ann said...

We were out in a lovely park yesterday geocaching where we saw a young deer in the distance. As for the follk with earplugs in listening to music! They have it too loud as i can hear it as well as they approach, still i suppose hearing aid companies will have future customers with them!

Roberto said...

Music researchers have found correlations between music making and some of the deepest workings of the human brain like problem solving.
gospel singers

sarah saad said...

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شركة كشف تسربات المياه بالدمام
شركة نقل عفش واثاث
شركة نقل عفش بالرياض وجدة والدمام والخبر والجبيل اولقطيف والاحساء والرياض وجدة ومكة المدينة المنورة والخرج والطائف وخميس مشيط وبجدة افضل شركة نقل عفش بجدة نعرضها مجموعة الفا لنقل العفش بمكة والخرج والقصيم والطائف وتبوك وخميس مشيط ونجران وجيزان وبريدة والمدينة المنورة وينبع افضل شركات نقل الاثاث بالجبيل والطائف وخميس مشيط وبريدة وعنيزو وابها ونجران المدينة وينبع تبوك والقصيم الخرج حفر الباطن والظهران
شركة نقل عفش بجدة

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