SAWS 2019 Accomplishments

  Dear Friends of SAWS,   As we enter the holiday season, the SAWS team would like to thank you for your commitment to public lands stewardship and your support of our work. 2019 has been a great 9th year for SAWS, and we’d like to reflect with you on our biggest accomplishments of 2019 […]

SAWS Street Style

by SAWS Fashion Correspondent Natalie M. Summer is coming to an end, and we here at SAWS know what that means – time to hit the trails in style with the latest fall forest fashion. There’s nothing more exciting than getting to impress the same five people with your outfits every day. We know how […]

Ode to the Sunchasers

Photo: Mason Boring Written by Matt McWilliams A season ends and a new one begins. A season full of change as week by week one flower blooms as another fades. A bud blossoms into a leaf and the forest floor turns to shade. The summer ends and the fall begins. For a short time, this […]

Lessons from the Wilderness

By Gianna Ossello, Crew Member   I spent 27 of 40 days in the Joyce Kilmer-Slickrock Wilderness in Western North Carolina. Although my brain is wired like a biologist, sometimes I just can’t resist the urge to anthropomorphize. Here are some of the lessons I learned during those 27 days:

Step By Step – By Scotty Bowman

The first time I lugged a gear and tool laden pack onto my back, I felt like I would collapse from the weight of it. Little did I realize that that was not the only weight I was carrying with me that day. The weight of that pack compared in no way to the burden […]

Spruce, Sphagnum, and a Roaring Fork: Tom and Skip go to Beartown

From Hutchinson’s rock at 4,480 feet, the view of Burke’s Garden below is stunning, a round bowl of fertile farmland encircled by thickly forested mountain ridges. It’s the highest elevation valley floor in the state of Virginia, and resembles a thumbprint made from above, or the blast crater from an ancient asteroid. In reality, the […]

Keeping It Wild – The Mountain Bike Divide

We are stewards of wild places. We value the positive impact that preserving wild places can have on ecosystems, individuals and communities. We stand as agents to serve these special places so that we may give wilderness areas to future generations across the arc of time. We value the places that make up the National […]

On Art, Wilderness, and the act of simply being

By Simon Farr It’s almost been four months since my season with the SAWS Regional Trail Crew came to an end. The gear is clean, the clothes retain only the faintest of odor, and the boots are repaired. Throwback posts are on social media, the Fall Crew season has also ended, and the school year […]

Nature and Grief: The Reconciliation

Written by Emma Bouchard   My brother passed on the cusp of fall. A time when trees become open and vulnerable, as the forest quietly surrenders itself to the universe. This is what grieving is like. Suddenly there you are, deeply rooted and bare branched, in a never-ending winter. For a while, you live in gray-scale […]

Wild Things, Part 2: The Pipevine Swallowtail

Written By David Greene To the right is a pipevine swallowtail caterpillar (Battus philenor). No doubt that you have probably seen dozens of the butterflies that these bad boys become. Swallowtail butterflies are some of the largest and most common butterflies found here in the Southern Appalachian Mountains. Let me point out a few neat […]