Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Finally, some milk weed....

For years I had intended to make some images of milk weed in the fall when their seed pods are opening.

And this was the year.

I was near Clam Lake Wisconsin and stopped by a small lake to make a few images. 

There were good clouds and reflections,

and the tamarack trees were turning gold.
After leaving the lake I found a patch of milk weed along the road.
The sun was in and out, sometimes hiding behind big clouds,
and sometimes beautifully lighting the milk weed pods and seeds.
While sitting on the side of the gravel road waiting for the sun to come out from behind the clouds I heard, 'tromp, tromp...tromp, tromp....tromp, tromp. When I looked over there were six elk; four cows and two calves, about 30 yards away behind trees at the edge of the forest.
The light wasn't good, and I didn't even attempt to photograph them. I just watched as they came up, looked at me and my camera on a tripod, paused for less than a minute and then trotted down the hill and deeper into the forest.
I smiled, felt lucky, and went back to the milk weed.
About four minutes later I heard another large mammal walking through the woods coming from the same direction the elk had come.
I suspected it was a bull elk following the cows, and I was right.
The bull walked to within 25 yards, looked at me, sniffed the air, and walked down the hill the same way the cows had gone.
I made a few more images of milk weed seeds and then lost the sun to overcast skies. I put the camera in the bag, took down the tripod and walked back to my car.
I was smiling as I drove away, thinking how lucky it was that I had stopped for some milk weed and chose to wait for the sun.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

I took my camera.....

and spent a little time in northern Wisconsin.

I stopped near Pattison State Park to photograph these pumpkins for sale along the road.

For years I had been noticing this type of ornamental grass along Wisconsin roadways. Today I took the time to make a few images of what I think is feather reed grass.


Then I made my way to Little Manitou Falls in Pattison State Park.

Capturing the falls with some fall colors behind.

I took the scenic route via highway 13 along Lake Superior towards Bayfield. It was windy and overcast along the lake so I turned south at Cornucopia hoping for some light before sunset.

Lucky for me, the sun made it through somewhere near Siskiwit Lake and I was able to capture some colorful maple trees near the road.


As I continued south towards Washburn I stopped one last time to capture the well lit leaves just before sunset.

It was a day well spent.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

What an inspiration....

This is a photo of Lake Louise with Mount Victoria in the middle of the image just below the cloud. Lake Louise is located in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada.
Yesterday, on the internet I came across a story about a man named Trevor Sexsmith who died in a skiing accident on Mount Victoria. http://unofficialnetworks.com/2016/09/early-season-avalanche-in-banff-national-park-claims-the-life-of-trevor-sexsmith
Since I love the Canadian Rockies and have been lucky enough to spend time there photographing the wildlife and landscape over the years, I googled Trevor Sexsmith to see who he was and found his site http://perpetualski.ca/2016/09/
Getting to the summit of even moderate peaks is real work for me, so reading his trip narratives and watching the incredible videos of his adventures left me slackjawed.
I was inspired and awed by the places he chose to go, his ability to get there and then to willingly drop off the edge on skis.
The level of fitness, knowledge of snow and ice, climbing, navigation, and the comfort he demonstrated in such a seemingly perilous environment was really something.
The fact this young man chose to spend his time and energy scaling mountain peaks and then skiing back down seems like a beautiful way to live.
I'm thankful he documented his adventures in photos, videos, and words. His doing so allowed me to see views I would never see and go along on remarkable adventures I would never attempt or accomplish myself. 
My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.