Check out the insightful piece in the January 11 Washington Post travel section on the Shenandoah National Park. There are two big ideas that relate to the Stoutsenberger Farmstead. The first is that winter is a great time to get off the path and explore as the landscape reveals itself and its secrets in new ways. Look for the old roads and the changes in the land. There might just be a story or a secret in that old fence line you never noticed before. The second insight involves the intersection of nature and history. It can be very rich to explore the interaction of the natural and the human. The story of the people who lived on the land that became the Shenandoah National Park is interesting and presents some difficult questions. One quote that sticks with me is the idea that the wilderness as we see it is different than the wilderness that people 100 years ago saw because there are different trees.
Weather, time, and energy permitting, get out there and explore this winter. The paths around the Stoutsenberger Farmstead are as good as any. Pay attention to the elements of man and nature that you cannot see during other points of the year. New insights await.