Owl’s Head Hike

Ryan and I loaded the kayaks in the truck and hit the road at 4 a.m. We had planned our trip to Owl’s Head Mountain in the Keene Valley, the High Peaks Region of the Adirondack Mountains, for weeks. The weather could not have been more perfect for hiking, and hadn’t dropped below 55 degrees F overnight. The goal was to be on the Owl’s Head lookout when the sun rose over the Green Mountains of Vermont, and crawled it’s way to some of New York’s greatest natural wonders, The Adirondacks, just in time for their spectacular fall foliage display. Along the way, somehow we tossed a kayak into the back window of Ryan’s Toyota Tundra, breaking the glass. How lucky we were that was to be the single downer of the entire day, and we got it out of the way before sunrise. As the dawn sky began to brighten, the ride was one of phenomenal beauty. The destination was gorgeous, the trail itself was beautiful, the view from the Lookout awe-inspiring. There are not enough superlatives to describe climbing up, standing on, or descending from that summit, so I must let photos speak for me. After the Owl’s head hike, we launched the kayaks on nearby Mirror Lake, and watched the sunrise again, this time over a granite bluff as it slowly spilled its way into our placid pool. A cormorant greeted us, and a pair of mergansers joined us. Or should I say we joined them? Along the way we passed the Lake Placid Olympic Training Center and the strange structure rising up out of the mountain woodlands; the ski jump tower, viewable from the road to the Adirondack Loj and South Meadows Wilderness Area. I’d suggest you see the Adirondacks some time, but then again these gems are some heirlooms I am tempted to keep for myself. You stay home, and enjoy the pictures. I’ll take care of the mountain climbing for you!  – Paz

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Hope you get a chance to get out and enjoy some of the lovely fall!
Remember, there’s more than one way to respond if someone tells you “Take a hike!”

Paz

Winter Gallery

Some photos of the beautiful, snowy, blowy winter before it fades into spring. 

 

An early spring equinox this year, as the sun crosses the equator on the trek northward.

Maybe that means winter will return sooner, too! One can only hope!

These skis are terrible on grass.

 

As of tomorrow, Happy Spring!

 

Paz

Snow Dogs

We were fortunate to have a local dogsledder, Kate Walrath of Run By Dogs, give us a demonstration at the village Library. She told us about different types of sled dogs, including the Siberian Husky and the Alaskan Husky. The latter is a smaller, rather plain looking dog. I was surprised to discover these canine competitors were about the size of my own Sassy June (a Chow-Husky mix called a Chusky). I thought sled dogs would all be big, strong 60-pounders. The small black dog with some white on her face (I wish I could remember her name) is actually a retired racer from Alaska. Racing dogs get a share of race winnings, and they are put into a “doggie 401k”. Kate’s place, called Run By Dogs, is a retreat for retired sled dogs as well as a training facility and a place to learn and enjoy dogsledding. The monies in the 401k’s pay for the dogs’ boarding and veterinary expenses.

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It was very cold that Saturday, as you can see by the apparel. It was in the mid-twenties, but no wind. It didn’t bother the dogs a bit, though. For the retired Queen from Alaska, this is probably equivalent to retiring to Florida! 

It’s good to get a different perspective sometimes.

 

Until next time,

 

Paz

Bevy Of Birds

I photograph a lot of outdoors stuff, and birds are probably my most frequent subject. That’s what happens when you combine an avid photographer with an avid bird-watcher! I’ve been assembling a compilation of shots for various purposes, and thought I’d post a sampling, and some of my personal faves. Click any photo to start full-size carousel.

 

Too many to fit in one gallery. So here’s a couple dozen more!

 

 

Of course there are a great many more. Next time I sort through, we’ll do another gallery!

 

Seek peace,

 

Paz

Farewell Winter Gallery

I am very fond of winter. I like the challenges it brings, and there are few things prettier than a world covered in a fresh coat of gleaming white new snow. When the time finally comes for the snow to leave, I always feel a bit melancholy about it. Well, I know it will be back soon, and that makes the long summer more bearable. This spring I spied a fisher running across a cornfield, and I was quick on the draw with the old Nikon. I snapped a few pictures of the little critter, a youngster, before he dashed off to the banks of the Schoharie Creek. Three of my favorite things came together for some other shots, namely a field of corn stubble with snow and Canada Geese. Somehow, they always look best when surrounded by snow. Ironically, the only shot of Snow Geese has no snow in it! Hope you enjoy this last sampling of the season, now that we’re impatiently awaiting tulips. 

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Here’s hoping summer is kind to us. I remind myself I only need to get through five months before the world will start to cool again, and once again we will be greeted by the wonderful world of winter.

 

Until next time,

 

Paz

Da Bear, and other Trailcam pix

Here he is, without further ado. The Holy Grail for my trail camera, the black bear.

Black Bear

And some other highlights.

Also shot two thousand frames of waving grass until I mowed in front of the trail camera. If you use one of these, be sure to keep the grass cut as the motion triggers the camera. Or put the cam away until “Seeing Season” returns!

The Trail Cam has been a lot of fun. We’ve caught a bear, many deer, coyotes and turkeys. Some neighbor cats, possums, skunks, dogs, an owl, raccoons and a Chupacabra! The camera ran til August, about ten months, on a set of batteries. No doubt would have lasted a year if it wasn’t taking countless snapshots of empty grass. A new set of batteries and winter’s approach, and we’ll be ready for another great season!

 

Paz

July Gallery

So, I shot so few frames in July I couldn’t come up with 31 pix for the gallery. High point of my July was the annual camping trip to Forked Lake in the Adirondack Mountains with son-in-law Matt and grandson Maximus. Also joining us this year, my son Terence’s son, my grandson Kacey. Fishing was phenomenal, weather was perfect, and I enjoyed it so much I almost forgot about photography! Without further ado…

 

Paz

 

June Gallery

What? August? Okay, so here’s the June Gallery. Three shoots really occupied me in June. First, granddaughter Ellie graduates from Pre-Kindergarten. Many pictures for Grampa to cry over. They grow so fast! Kids at that age are always photoworthy and touch the heart. Then, a trip to Forked Lake with son Ryan and pal Carl. Clouds rolled over Blue Mountain, and I sat and shot dozens of frames. Worthy of its own post, watch for “The Many Moods of Blue Mountain” as a Photoshoot post. The other biggy: Daughter Kerry surprises us with an impromptu wedding, as she makes an honest man out of her long-time beau (and domestic partner) Kenyon. A unique wedding by a unique couple, the whole thing took place right there on the farm, the reception in the barn. Without a doubt one of the best weddings I’ve ever attended (being Father of The Bride had no influence, I’m sure). I’ll do a Photoshoot post for that, too. It was a great time with some great pix, and some trix and pointers.

-Paz

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