It's easy to get 'cabin fever' in the cold months of winter. Slippery roads, gray days when the sun doesn't show its face for days upon end, and bitter cold cause me to opt for the heat of the wood stove rather than braving the elements outside. But, fresh air and exercise do much to lift the spirits, especially on a day without sunshine. The wildlife refuge next door creates an interesting place to walk. There is always something to see, no matter what the time of year. Because the ponds are frozen over now, the geese and ducks have moved to the river nearby. The wildlife refuge seems deathly quiet and lonely without them. Nature provides much of interest though. Russian olives, rose hips, and snow white berries adorn shrubs and trees. The bark of sagebrush, coated with a haze of bright yellow lichen stands out among the dreary landscape. Its vibrant color seems to scream "look at me" and the viewer cannot help but smile when it's in view. Empty nests, used and abandoned, wait to be remodeled for spring's new crop of birds. Viewing an oriels nest, and the osprey nest high on a pole, show contrast in size and style. Each reflects characteristics of the birds who create them. Tracks can be seen on the trail. The now frozen ground preserves prints of coyote, deer, raccoon, mink, beaver, duck, goose, and man. Identifying them is interesting and makes the trail seem shorter as each is identified and pondered about. Brisk, refreshing, and energy inducing; walks at the wildlife refuge benefit even the most chilly of winter days. Bundle up!