You asked "What then?" if walking outdoors simply put you in an
It seems important to ask first if there is some agenda during the
walk as well as to ask how to look at a particular landscape.
In the first case, simply walking outdoors will always put you in
touch with some kind of sensory situations lending themselves to
responses (painting, photography, tuning into the sounds around you to
play with some kind of musical connections as examples).
But the larger environmental question relates to the latter issue
of how to look. There is no single landscape in North America, even in
wilderness areas within protected national parks, that is without need
of restoration. So, anywhere we walk from an urban neighborhood to a
rather pristine forest is prime for the questions:
What was it like?
What is it like?
How will it be?
And, in our society the real trigger of a question, How CAN it
Within each of those are places to enter with interpretation,
research, and action. In restoration ecology we are just really
starting to stumble into the abilities to do right by helping
landscapes be what they can, by understanding histories of change.