Nature's Music

Ocean Surf (running time 1:01)
Upon sight of the infinite blue expanse rolling its frothing waves upon the sandy beach, you wonder how you allowed so many years to pass since your last visit to the ocean. The gentle onshore breeze feels refreshing in the humid summer air as you walk along the edge of the rising tide. Recorded in Rhode Island.

Ocean Surf with Terns (running time 1:01)
Similar to above, but with better stereo quality (microphone more exposed instead of sheltered from the wind) and featuring the cries of terns who make their nests in a protected area nearby. Recorded in Rhode Island.

Spring's First Peepers (running time 0:46)
It's been a long winter, the snowiest in over 100 years. Yet, amazingly, all of nature springs to life as though at the flick of a switch. There's still snow on the ground as the tree frogs in the thawing marsh come out from hibernation.

Ducks at Night (running time 0:48)
The lake is as still as glass in the chilly April night. The last few chunks of winter's ice drift around aimlessly, and the ducks are glad for all the open water.

Canada Goose (running time 0:30)
The ducks aren't the only ones glad for the open water. Off in the distance, a Canada goose swims around the edge of the ice, honking for all the shoreline-dwellers to hear.

Snowy Stream (133k, running time 15 sec.)
Your trek on snowshoes takes you across a field of fluffy powder snow like a fifty-acre feather pillow. While the falling snow adds more silence to the already-tranquil winter landscape, the flowing stream adds the only sound to be heard. Hear the river

Arctic Blast (365k, running time 45 sec.)
When the snowstorm clears, the wind turns direction and blows straight from the North Pole. Freshly fallen snow takes flight as the temperature plummets. Throw another log in the wood stove and snuggle up with a mug of hot cocoa while you watch the pine trees sway outside your window. More winter wind 1 | 2

Walking in Snow (252k, running time 30sec.)
It's been a long time since the snow was deep enough to make you feel like a kid again. With your snowpants on and your feet warm inside your boots, you make the first steps in an undisturbed field of fresh snow higher than your knees.

The Subtle Sound of Snow (249k, running time 30 sec.)
Many wonder if the sound of snow is the same as that of one hand clapping. It does make a noise--to hear it, one must be still as the winter itself. Once immersed in the traquil scene, it's possible to forget about any of the discomforts of winter or even of life itself, and totally lose track of time. Perhaps such a moment is what Robert Frost details in his famous poem, 'Stopping By Woods On a Snowy Evening.'

Loons (842k, running time 26 sec.)
The ice is out, and the loons are glad to be back. Hear the beloved bird's drawn-out song and laughter-like chatter echo across the water of a New Hampshire lake on a calm night.
More Loons (187k, 0:22)

Loon-Owl Duet (586k, running time 1:12)
A loon sings alone in the darkness, until, on the far shore, an owl joins in.

The Loon Chatter (105k, running time 11 sec.)
The loons are known for several different types of calls, and this is their 'chatter'.

Loon and Thunder (705k, running time 1:28)
A severe thunderstorm was approaching, but this loon sang anyway.

Water and Distant Loons (489k, running time 1:00)
Nearly-calm lake water laps gently on the sandy shore, and in the tranquil evening the loon songs are audible from a mile away.

Canada Geese (251k, running time 30 sec.)
It's early September and all the summer crowds have gone home. The lake lies tranquil in the dusk that comes noticeably earlier than just a couple weeks ago. Canada geese make their trumpeting calls in the calm, chilly air.

Crickets (327k, running time 40 sec.)
A mild late summer night without any wind brings out a steady song of crickets as the lake water gently sloshes against the wooded shoreline. More crickets 1 | 2 | 3

Amphibian Lullabye (255k, running time 30 sec.)
When the bugs come out, no one sings and jumps about it more than these guys do. All they need is a mild midnight and the frogs will give you a swamp symphony that's perfect for unwinding.
Hear them closer (485k, 1:00)

Northern Nocturne (586k, running time 1:12)
Midnight has passed. Half your mind wants to sleep, but the other half doesn't want to miss the performance. Just when you think the gentle harmony of loons and frogs couldn't get any better, the owl adds more rhythm.

The Lake at Night (5.4 Mb, running time 2:54)
The sun slips behind the mountains for the night, and you've never seen a lake so still. Its water reflects the infinite cosmos above. Through the darkness echo the conversations of owls between islands and the shoreline, ducks offshore, frogs at the water's edge, and a choir of several loons.

Sunny Meadow (247k, running time 30 sec.)
The afternoon sun warms crickets, causing them to chirp quickly. Imagine the soft breeze in the tall grass between the apple orchard and the vegetable garden where the honey bee spreads pollen among the tomatoes and summer squash.

Approaching Storm (3.7 Mb, running time 8:07)
It's after midnight. Though the heat of the day has long passed, the lake's weather has a mind of its own. A calm evening yeilds a few distant rumbles of thunder that gradually grow in volume. The wind picks up. The storm hits. But that's okay - you know that when you wake up it'll be a calm and misty morning, perfect for waterskiing before breakfast. This recording is just long enough to help most people get to sleep.

Thunderstorm (1.1 Mb, running time 45 sec.)
Thunderstorms on the lake bring back memories of summer camp, and lightning over the water at night makes a spectacular show that fascinates both the young and the old.
More Thunder
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

Storm's a-Brewin' (299k, running time 36 sec.)
The wind rises as the sky darkens, and now there's no more mistaking the once-faint thunder for a high-flying jet. Get that ladder down from the house, disconnect those power cords, and come inside!

Severe Thunderstorm (725k, running time 1:34)
Every August there seems to be a time when autumn decides to make its first advance into the warm, humid air over the lake. The resulting battle of seasons is a spectacular experience for all the senses.

Heavy Rain (308k, running time 37 sec.)
In everyday life it bothers a lot of people, but there's something different about the sound of rain when you're at the lake. It makes you want to sleep with the window cracked open, to let the rain's forest percussion become auditory hynosisis as your head hits the pillow. Is it the smell of the old pine wood in your cottage that rainy weather brings out? Is it the feel of your comforter, that invokes so many fond memories? The rain? The lake? Maybe it's all of the above.

Ocean Surf (275k, running time 33 sec.)
Relax on a breezy but warm summer day at Newcastle Island just off the coast of New Hampshire. Lie in the smooth sand and hear the saltwater pass through the granite outcroppings on its way to your feet, and then retreat back to start the process over.

Ocean Surf 2 (252k, running time 30 sec.)
A slightly different version of the above, also recorded at Newcastle Island, New Hampshire.

Riding on a Dirt Road (466k, running time 56 sec.)
It's been a long day of hiking. With a body full of sore muscles, a camera full of stellar views, and a mind full of great new memories, you put your head back, glad that your friend offered to drive. The sun flickers through the dense canopy of leaves and the car bounces over pebbles and potholes, but none of it can open your eyelids. The breeze through the open windows feels too nice. Birds and crickets in the passing meadows sing to you. When you awaken, you'll be home. (subwoofer speaker reccomended for best effect.)

Marsh Song (1.1 Mb, running time 21 sec.)
Warm weather brings the northern wetlands to life with nocturnal vocals of the frogs known as 'peepers.'

Morning Songbirds (1.7 Mb, running time 30 sec.)
It's been a long time since you've slept so well. The early sun illuminates a light fog rising from the water surface, and these feathered friends are calling you to share their joy in celebrating the new day.

Birds at Dawn (251k, running time 31 sec.)
The rest of the world is still asleep. Pale blue twilight breaks the grip of darkness on the eastern horizon to show you the pond's as still as glass, the spiderweb covered with dew. Every morning, these birds are up before the sun.

copyright © 2008 Mike Colclough, all rights reserved