Sunday, January 22, 2012

Still Looking

There was a big solar flare this week.  There were reports that we might see Northern Lights!  I have never seen them (it is one of my bucket list items).

I went out after dark.  I drove out of town out to a small rise by an open field.  It was cold and windy.  There were a few inches of snow on the ground.

I set the camera up on a stand, pointed it to the north, and tried some 60 second exposures.  After a half hour of freezing my hands and feet, I came home to see if I had anything.


You could see the glow of the city to the north.  Some of the shots were away from the glow of the city, but they did not show the Northern Lights.

I spun the camera around and took a few shots of Orion.  Kinda nice . . .

You got to keep looking up!

Happy Birthday Mom

We wish you were still here with us!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Winter Has Arrived

The last few days have seen some snow and cold temperatures.  Finally, I can experience the beauty of the winter.

Saturday -

I went snow-shoeing yesterday.  The temperature was at 16 degF, and expected to continuing to drop as the day progressed.  I went to the Robert Frost trails, and then headed up the Water Tower Trails.

There were a few snow showers up on the higher peaks.

The Middlebury is still flowing.  In time, it will ice up.

I started the climb up the Northstar Trail.  I kept my head down as  slogged along.  I told myself to stop and listen.  I could hear my breathing, feel my heart beat.  The low rumble of automobiles climbing the Green Mountains off in the distance was the only other sound I heard.  I looked up, making sure I took in all the sights.

The trails went on.  In time I had reached the top of the trail and had an easy time of descending.  Other had went on before me . . .

I stopped at Widow's Clearing.  I climbed the small rise there and just took in the mountains.

I turned around and headed back.  I came to the top of the Water Trails.

I descended down the Trepidation Trail (very very steep), and then cut over on Afternoon Delight.  No one had been there in the last few days.  The snow was pristine.  The sun would peak through the clouds, and the shadows of the trees on the terrain were interesting.

I even took a self portrait!

I got back down to the Middlebury.  I rested for a while, just listening to the water.

Back on the Robert Frost trails, I came across a copy of his poem "The Road Not Taken".  I have had a lot of things to think about the last month, and I found the idea that I could be following a new path comforting!

I decided to take a different road back home!

Sunday -

I decided to visit Kingsland Bay.  I temperature was 1 degF!  The rivers are iced up, and the bays are starting to get iced in.  I could see ice fog rolling across the mouth of the bay.

I followed she shoreline.  I came across flocks of Robins!  Lately, I was wondering if they go south.

There were platter-sized chunks of ice by the shore.  They looked like frozen lily pads.

I followed along the shoreline.  I walked the trail by the cliffs.  The water looked cold, and the trail was slippery.

I came across a stand of trees, shattered by some fierce wind this past year.

I came around a bend in the shoreline.  I could see the ice fog moving across the bay towards me.

Ice was coating the rocks.

It was quiet by the water.  The only signs of bird-life were some gull tracks by the shore.

The cold wind and ice fog were bitter.  I would take my gloves off to shoot some photos, and quickly loose feelings in m fingers.  My eyes were tearing up.

The ice fog left delicate crystals on the trees . . .

. . . and the rocks.

After shooting some more photos, and freezing to death, I decided to head back.

I followed a trail through the woods.  I had some respite from the winds.

I could here birds about.  I stopped and took my hood down.  Birds were all around me.

Chicadees . . .

. . . Cardinals . . .

. . .  and Robins!

I followed the trail back to the car.  I looked out, and saw a pair or Mergansers in the water.  I don't know how they do it!

I passed by the South Slang.  It is iced over.  It will be months before I can paddle there again.

Time to go home and thaw out!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

A Wintertime River Walk

We've had a warm winter so far, but the Otter is starting to ice up.  The river continues to run by the falls...

... but is starting to close in downstream.

I like walking by the water this time of year.  There were a few snowflakes in the air.  The birds were silent, and the river was quiet.

I stopped to look at some of the old brick buildings by the basin.  A few of the buildings used to be old warehouses.  They were converted to homes years ago.

I came across an old print that showed a number of buildings along the river by the basin back over 100 years ago when the steamships came up the Otter.  The brick buildings were in the print, but a number of other warehouses were there.  They are long-gone, but a few of their foundations still exist.

It amazes me how much things have changed over time...

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Start of Another Year

Got up.

Made a pot of coffee.

Went to the auction house.

Did some shopping.

Decided to clean out the barn...
  -  Yes, it is nearly 50 degF outside.
  -  Opened the doors to the hay mow.

  -  Opened the doors by the stalls.

  -  Nope, the owl doesn't keep the bats away~

  -  Yep, I had to sweep up a lot of bat poop!  (I cheat - I use a leaf blower!)

The rain is coming in.  It will cool off over the next few days. A little snow is predicted.

Happy New Year!