Monday, July 17, 2006

In Search of Tranquility

This article examines the growing demand among the affluent, especially in the southeastern U.S., for second homes in peaceful wooded settings and the effects of this development on adjacent natural areas such as National Parks and National Forests. Many of the examples mentioned are from rural West Virginia.

I have witnessed this on a somewhat smaller scale on the upper slopes of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia and adjacent parts of Virginia. There, the fragmentation and interspersion of wooded mountain acreage with homes to accommodate the growing numbers of commuters who work in the District of Columbia and northern Virginia is threatening the solitude and integrity of the nearby Appalachian Trail.

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