Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4Heading outdoors to hunt, camp or do other outdoor activities in the winter should involve some advance planning. After all, the weather this time of year can sometimes be unpredictable. Tom Smith, one of the Southeast’s top recreational land brokers, goes out in the woods all year long, and has some tips that can come in handy as you prepare for your next outdoor excursion. “Even after checking the weather, surprises can happen with the weather changing,” says Tom, a member of the Potlatch Preferred Broker Network. “You never want to be caught unprepared.” With this in mind, here are six tips from Tom as you pack for your next trip: 1. Consider taking a heated jacket, which can be adjusted to match the temperature. Some of them are rated to keep you warm even when the temperature drops below zero. 2. A compass can be a major help if you lose your bearings, and don’t depend on using the compass on your cell phone. What if your phone runs out of power? 3. Most outdoors enthusiasts know that wearing layers gives you the ability to adjust to the weather, but also think about what will happen to your head if it rains. Bring a couple of extra head covers so you can bring out an extra if needed. 4. People often overpack their gear but don’t pack enough food. Remember to bring food that’s high in protein. One favorite snack of Tom’s: quick-dried fruits in zip-lock bags. 5. Fanny packs might seem a bit dorky, but don’t worry about it. They can come in very handy. As an example, 6-ounce bottles can easily fit in a pack and provide a good amount of water for your trip. 6. Make sure your cell phone stays charged by bringing two battery- charger travel packs. As you get outside this winter, it’s a good time to think about buying your own piece of recreational property as a base for your excursions. If you’re in Mississippi, Tom Smith is a great resource, and in other states, another member of the Potlatch Preferred Broker Network can help. Give one of them a call today. For more information about Tom Smith Land and Homes or its Potlatch land listings 601 Crescent Blvd, Suite 103 | Ridgeland, MS 39157 Phone 601-209-3284 | Website: Email: BROKER IN THE WOODS From cutting down the tree as a family to dancing and singing around it, Natalie Cowart, a Minnesota Preferred Broker, and her family know how to make the holiday memorable! Keeping a tradition passed down from her Grandmother alive that pays homage to its Danish roots is great fun in the Cowart family. “Even though as kids we cringed when we had to hold hands and do this, now we have such fun doing it”, says Natalie. They walk, dance and even stomp around the Christmas Tree and sing songs on Christmas Day or Christmas Eve, sometimes in two rings so everyone can join in! Inside or outside, in a living room or a garage - the tradition continues every year and traditionally ends with a Danish song that means - “Christmas until Easter”. A favorite time of year, Christmas includes cutting down their own tree. “Decorating it is the fun part for me - even if they are typically 13 to 15 feet tall!! “ All the better to dance around, right?? In the South, how should a land buyer look at pines vs. hardwoods in terms of timber value for a property? Answered by our own Mississippi broker partner, Tom Smith of Tom Smith Land & Homes: A combination of pine and hardwood trees is definitely common on Southern properties, and to determine future timber value, there’s more to it than knowing that pines grow more quickly than hardwoods. By working with a real estate expert who understands timber, you can understand the demand for each type and age of timber, which drives the property’s total timber value. The market for pine, which is a soft wood, is driven by new home construction, while the demand for hardwood, like oak and maple, is driven by demand for products like hardwood flooring. With the US homebuilding market returning, the good news is that demand for both soft and hard woods is increasing – and both are trends that are expected to continue. With timber prices on the rise due to this increased demand, now could be a great time to buy. Understanding all this isn’t simple. So it’s important to make sure you work with someone who is knowledgeable on the markets and truly understands how to determine timber value as you make your buying decision. Not sure what type of tree you’re looking at? Start here with this helpful tree identification field guide app from the Arbor Day Foundation or contact any member of Potlatch’s Preferred Network. And,formoreinformationandinsights,pleasevisitourOnline Resource Library. ‘TIS THE SEASON WHAT’S IN YOUR WOODS PACK CAREFULLY AS THE WEATHER TURNS COLDER HOLIDAY TRADITIONS: Natalie Cowart, United Country – Banning Junction/Moose Lake 3 2