#2 – New Side of the City

Even though I’ve spent two years as an undergraduate in Ann Arbor, moving from the dorms on campus into a house off campus has allowed me to see a completely different side of the city. While living in the dorms, my travels were restricted to how far I could walk – only a mile or two. Now that I’m living off campus and have access to my car I’ve been able to explore parts of the city I never knew existed. The work I do for my internship has taken me to so many beautiful parks and natural areas across Ann Arbor that I never would have found on my own – I had no idea the city was full of natural hidden gems just waiting to be explored. Huron Parkway Nature Area, for example, is hidden in plain sight. It runs right along the edge of Huron Parkway, but there’s no obvious entrance to the forest and no designated parking. I must have driven past it countless times before working there for my internship. The nearest parking is half a mile away, but the hike is worth it. Inside the park is a beautiful, untouched old-growth forest right along a tributary of the Huron River; and this is only one of the over 200 parks and natural areas managed by the city of Ann Arbor.

Working in different forests and natural areas across Ann Arbor has opened my eyes to all of the natural beauty of the city and its surrounding areas. Once my internship is over, I know I’ll return to some of these sites to take a break from the hustle and bustle of campus life.

One thought on “#2 – New Side of the City

  • August 7, 2018 at 9:52 am

    Hi, Ashley! My name is Zane Harding and I’m an intern at the Hub. I will be following your blog posts throughout the summer.

    I am so glad to hear that you have fallen in love with your work. It is so important to love the work you are doing and to hear that you are interested in and fulfilled by the research you are doing made me smile. I actually changed one or two of my fall classes due to interests that have developed in the summer myself (one of them I’m on a waitlist because apparently, environmental writing is a popular course), so I think it is very cool that your summer influenced your future courses.

    I’m not going to lie, I’m a little jealous that you are living in Ann Arbor off-campus with a car. I live a two-minute walk away from South Quad myself, and my biggest gripe is that I can only get somewhere off-campus if I can find time for my roommate (who does have a car) to go with me. That said, I am so happy to hear that it has opened your horizons in the city because Ann Arbor is truly gorgeous and has so many fun things to do (I recommend taking some friends to Belmark Lanes right outside of town in Scio Township, it’s a fantastic time).

    I’d be curious to hear more about your actual work out in nature. It would be interesting to hear about the difference between what you do in nature during work and during your free time when you’re driving out and exploring some of the 200 parks (that’s insane!!) in Ann Arbor. I hope you continue to enjoy your work!


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