Conklin Run Wilderness Area
By Diana Reighart
As a young person, I spent my summers up at Lake Mokoma. Mokoma Conservancy was established in 2001, when I was only seven years old, so I can barely remember a time when there wasn’t a conservancy. I used to play games with my brother beside the Conklin stream and walked the trails with my family. What a joy it is to now introduce this area to young kids in my role as activities director for the Mokoma Conservancy Board, a position I have held for the past two years.
The children spend time at Conklin Run to learn about how insect diversity and abundance, temperature, and clarity can be used to determine stream health. We also spread out large tarps when we do arts and crafts with natural items like fallen leaves and twigs. For instance, we used fallen items to create printed post cards. During the summer of 2016, we brought out an all-time favorite–gnome home building along the stream. Kids used fallen branches, sticks, leaves, and flowers to construct and decorate homes for woodland creatures. Don’t tell them, but I came back later to temporarily add a few miniature plastic and stone fairies and gnomes inside the houses!
We also go on hikes throughout the Conservancy trails and even held a small picnic on a platform by Found Lake. The magic, science, and beauty of the wilderness are truly alive and well on this Mokoma Conservancy property.