Nature Heals: Halie Nicholson

Halie Nicholson spreads her love of nature while traveling throughout Pennsylvania.


Life goes by in a blink of an eye. Before you know it, it has passed and you were too busy worrying about school, work, or even social media.  Take a moment and reflect on how your state of mind has been. Have you been stressing about the big project, or having too many assignments to even count? Take a moment to stop and smell the roses.Slow down and appreciate the many things nature has to offer.

Halie Nicholson, a sophomore at Greater Latrobe, is passionate about the natural life that surrounds her. She is a total dendrophile, a person who loves trees and forests. Her bright view on the great outdoors can be eye opening to those who have never considered exploring what’s beyond their bedroom.

Ever since she was a young girl she has been drawn to the wildlife. Often caught running in the grass, rather than confined in her house. “My favorite part out in nature is easily the forest. I grew up in Hidden Valley, mountain biking and camping. This caused the woods to bring me the most peace, and feel at home,” said Halie.

Often traveling on the road, she has visited many beautiful forests in Pennsylvania. The greenery and flowers of the Pennsylvania seasons brighten up your view. “There are definitely a lot of places that I still wish to go to, but my favorite spot is one that I visited recently. It would have to be Jake’s Rock here in Pennsylvania,” Halie said. Isolated and dreamt, filled with tall rocks and water, it truly shows what mother nature is capable of.

Jake’s Rock is not the only natural forest in Pennsylvania. Nature surrounds us and is waiting to be discovered day after day. Rather than sitting at home complaining about being trapped in quarantine, get a breath of fresh air somewhere as close as your backyard.

It can be stressful keeping up with online schooling for everyone. Your eyes are glued to the computer screen all day long, it’s nice to see something that is not digitally programmed for a while. “Being outdoors is one of the best ways to clear your mind. It allows you to focus on the beauty of the world, and distracts you from all of the unwelcome negative thoughts. Anything as simple as looking at the stars above you, or going on a hike in the woods, can keep your mind calm. I too get stressed, and the natural world works wonders,” explained Halie.. 

Due to the virus, traveling outside of your own small town has been rare. Distancing yourselves from your family and friends isn’t all that bad though. Nature has been benefiting greatly from the decrease in travel pollution. “I feel that nature has looked a lot brighter and cleaner. Throughout quarantine, a lot more people have started to realize and appreciate the outdoors,” said Nicholson. The animals breathe, and the sky clears up. A pause on your personal reality, and a flourish in the world around you. 

Not only has the quarantine made nature itself healthier, but it has also spread awareness to this subject. Citizens see the change in natural life after staying home for just a couple months. This realization can be the gateway to many more changes in day to day lifestyle. “People surely have more time to be aware of the tragedies going on around the world, leading them to get more involved. I have noticed a lot more attention towards climate change and pollution throughout social media, and day to day conversations with people,” said Halie.

The natural world is much more than just a couple trees. It is alive and can bring you happiness. Quarantine has not solved the issues between nature and humans, but it has definitely contributed to awareness of what is going on. Take a mental break in between your classes, and get some fresh air.