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A Vermont outdoorsman at Glacier National Park

Posted on July 26, 2017 |
By Matt Dickerson



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Middlebury College computer science professor — and outdoors and nature writer — Matthew Dickerson spent June 6 through July 1 at Glacier National Park, surrounded by the majesty of the Rocky Mountains, as its official Artist in Residence.

Dickerson, a 54-year-old Bristol resident, has been an Addison Independent outdoors columnist for the past 20 years. He wrote four columns for us on his experience in the big sky country of Montana.

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Matt Dickerson: Glacier National Park Diaries 3 — Learning about Cutthroat trout

Posted on July 13, 2017 |
By Matt Dickerson



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My final week at Glacier National Park (GNP) arrives too soon: I still have two presentations to make and several interviews to do.

The first interview will be with United States Geological Survey (USGS) biologist Joe Giersch, who works with rare imperiled stoneflies, such as the small black Meltwater Stonefly that lives in streams just below melting glaciers. Populations can be as dense as 5,000 per square meter. 

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Matt Dickerson: Glacier National Park Diaries 2 — Middlebury meets Montana

Posted on June 29, 2017 |
By Matt Dickerson



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Glacier National Park is a big beautiful place. At roughly the size of Rhode Island, it is one of the largest national parks in the United States. The world, by contrast, is small.

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Matt Dickerson: Glacier National Park Diaries 1 — Reflections on water

Posted on June 15, 2017 |
By Matt Dickerson



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Editor’s note: Matt Dickerson is an official artist in residence at Glacier National Park in Montana this month.

Like most visitors to Glacier National Park, I am awed by the majesty of the mountains: the splendor of towering peaks of bare stone, thrust upward by the collisions of continents, carved by glaciers, and still splotched with last winter’s snow. 

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Matt Dickerson: Mosquitos and brook trout

Posted on June 1, 2017 |
By Matt Dickerson



The good news is that the brook trout were feeding. Hatching insects thickened the air above the water. Rising fish hammered aquatic insects as they emerged from the bottom of the stream, or later as they hovered low over the water, or later still as they fell back down on the surface to lay their eggs.

The bad news is that most of the insects were mosquitos, and some were black flies. 

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Matt Dickerson: Early trout and pike

Posted on May 18, 2017 |
By Matt Dickerson



It’s Tuesday evening and I’m sitting in a dining room of the Swift House watching Kevin Ramirez tie pike flies while he and Brian Cadoret talk about strategies for fishing those flies. The flies are huge. They are both longer and more colorful than many of the trout that were stocked in local rivers early this month.

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Matt Dickerson: Delight, wonder and outdoor writing

Posted on April 26, 2017 |
By Matt Dickerson



Several weeks ago I had the pleasure of attending a reading and lecture by poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil. I was intrigued by the title of the talk: “The Importance of Writing the Outdoors with Wonder.” I especially appreciated the notion of “wonder” — but I’ll come back to that.

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Matt Dickerson: Trout in the Mountain Fork

Posted on April 13, 2017 |
By Matt Dickerson



The dry fly fishing had been slow. By late morning the air temperature had risen past 80, and trout were rising steadily all up and down the river. Unfortunately, they were rising for the tiny midges, which hovered over the surface of the river like starlings over a cornfield, only smaller. Much smaller, in fact. They were too small for me to successfully imitate. Either that, or there were just so many of them that the probability of a trout taking my artificial midge in the midst of the swarm of real ones was too slim even if my imitation was good.

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Matt Dickerson: The Pi Day blizzard of 2017, an ode

Posted on April 6, 2017 |
By Matt Dickerson



The last weekend in March I went cross-country skiing at Rikert Nordic Center for what I thought at the time was almost certainly the final time of the 2016-17 winter. A month or so earlier I had gone skiing and feared it was my final ski of the winter. But then came the Pi Day Blizzard of 2017 — the glorious, delightful and beautiful Pi Day Blizzard, also known as Category 3 Winter Storm Stella.

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