Brasstown Bald

This weekend I was able to get up to North Georgia and hike the approach trail to Brasstown Bald, the highest mountain in Georgia. The summit is only 4600 feet above sea level, so it’s no Everest, but the heat and the steepness of the half-mile trail made me appreciate all the wildflowers – and the opportunity to stop and catch my breath while I photographed them.

 

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As you can see the woods are full of pollinators, always a happy sight these days. The whole area is part of the Chattahoochee National Forest, and there’s both an excellent visitor’s center and a shuttle from the parking area to the summit if you have someone who’s differently abeled or it’s just too darn hot for the hike. I highly reccomend it though – you struggle up the switchbacks (I struggled, at least; you may be less lazy than I am) and as you reach the last turn the fire tower at the summit leaps into to view, and the valley views spread out all around you.

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The Appalachian Trail runs nearby, as well as some other good hiking trails. I’m looking forward to getting back to the area and exploring more.

 

 

The Thing with Feathers

Some new images from my recent trip to Hondouras. I’ll have some upcoming posts about the trip, but in the meantime these are from the folks at Macaw Mountain, a bird rehabilitation and rescue facilty in Copan, Hondouras. They take in injured and abandoned birds, and have a robust program that has allowed free-flying Macaws – the sacred bird of the Maya – to once again soar over the spectacular ruins of Copan, one of the most beautiful of the Mayan cities. The colors and beauty of these birds cannot be overstated, but to see them in flight over the centuries-old ruins – time suddenly stands still, and the past seems very close.

You can check out their website here if you are interested, and if you travel to that area be sure to pay them a visit.

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Photo of the Day: Beach

I had some family-related time in Florida and shot these on the beach near where I grew up. During the day it was all hustle-a-bustle, but at sunset everyone but the Ospreys go home and suddenly it’s the empty beach of my teen years, suffused with memories.

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Floral Studies

Some new additions to my tiny photo project – nature photography in close-up.

 

From a creamy white rose…

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To a scarlet lily. I love that you can actually see the texture of the black spots on the waxy red petals.

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and the austere whiteness of a half-opened magnolia blossom. The interior looks like an exotic sea creature to me. Maybe I need to go to the beach?

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Blue Planet II Inspiration

I’ve been in love with the Planet Earth and Blue Planet series for what seems like forever, and I’m not kidding when I say I’ve watched all the episodes about a hundred and eleventy times. The stunning images combined with David Attenborough’s sly narration – “He’s had an enjoyable lunch, but now it’s time to find a MATE!” will rivet me to the couch for hours. Really, David Attenborough could do the narration for someone breaking down the transmission on a 1997 Honda Element, and I would sit through the whole thing, completely enrapt.

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So in celebration of Blue Planet II being finally released in the U.S. – you lucky Brits got it months ago – I thought I’d revisit some of my favorite photos that I’ve taken of our watery world.

One of my goals this year is to improve my underwater photography, so hopefully by Blue Planet III I’ll have some images taken from beneath the surface.

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Until then, I’ll just continue to peer into ocean from the surface.

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The Tiny Photo Project

New images from a photo project I’m currently working on. I’m not traveling at the moment and it’s hard not to feel a pang when you look on the internets and see all the lush, panoramic landscape shots that people are taking. There are some amazing artists out there doing beautiful work.

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Since I’m currently chained to the editing station, I decided to find a challenge that I could do without wandering too far, and decided to do a macro photography project. I have to be honest, it’s kind of amazing. I expected it to be a stop-gap project, something to fill space until I could get out to the grand vistas again, and I wasn’t sure I could come up with enough subjects to work with.
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Instead I feel like I’m seeing a whole other layer of my surroundings, just by looking at things from a texture/color perspective. I’ve photographed everything from Star Wars figurines to a raccoon print in snow to a skeletonized frog I found in a houseplant (have NO idea how that got there)
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My notes app is full of ideas so I’m sure you’ll be seeing more of these. I’ll try to stay away from creepy skeleton things and do more like this sea glass…
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