Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Tuesday, September 29, 2015
Monday, September 28, 2015
Sunday, September 27, 2015
I don't know what told me to change my (bed's) warm-season light fleece throw to a warm comforter last night but I'm glad that something triggered the change. I woke up to find that some of the chilly outside 38 degree air had crept in through my still open windows; luckily I was burrowed under the warmth of my comforter.
Posted by Denise Goldberg at 7:33 AM
Saturday, September 26, 2015
Today's sun and chilly air drew me to Crane Beach for a walk along the water. I arrived about an hour after high tide; that provided a reasonable walking surface.
The ocean was active and the wind was strong. A few sea gulls joined humans in walking down the sandy beach.
I was fascinated when I read these words on a sign in the park:
Formed some 6,300 years ago, Crane Beach is part of a 22-mile chain of barrier islands stretching from Cape Ann to Great Boar's Head in New Hampshire.
Posted by Denise Goldberg at 5:56 PM
Thursday, September 24, 2015
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
Funny, I always thought that the day of the equinox was 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of dark. Apparently my understanding was a little off; sunrise today was at 6:32 AM and sunset at 6:40 PM, giving us a day that is 8 minutes longer than 12 hours. Hmm...
I went looking for information and found the page What is the September Equinox? It showed that the equinox at my location was today, September 23, 2015, at 4:22 AM. I found the definition interesting:
Sun Crosses Celestial Equator
The September equinox occurs the moment the Sun crosses the celestial equator – the imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s Equator – from north to south. This happens either on September 22, 23, or 24 every year.
information courtesy of www.timeanddate.com
Posted by Denise Goldberg at 6:41 PM
Tuesday, September 22, 2015
Monday, September 21, 2015
A late afternoon visit the the garden at Pineland Farms in New Gloucester, Maine provided a different garden view than the last time I visited (just 5 weeks ago). The contrast between full summer bloom and the flowers that remain as the season edges into autumn was amazing.
As we were leaving we stopped to look at the bright purple seed pods of a purple hyacinth bean vine. Look! There is an inchworm happily moving along the edge of the bean.
Posted by Denise Goldberg at 6:09 AM
Sunday, September 20, 2015
It was an afternoon to explore a new wandering spot, Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park in Freeport, Maine. There are trails that follow the rocky coastline and trails through the woods. It's a place that needs visits in different seasons; I'm looking forward to seeing the park clad in fall colors and later, the snow of winter.
Posted by Denise Goldberg at 6:24 PM
Friday, September 18, 2015
Thursday, September 17, 2015
Photos from my wanders in South Dakota and Colorado are loaded into galleries, ready for viewing. Start with the top level gallery Badlands to Mountains or click on the photos below to enter a specific gallery.
Badlands, and... :
big balloons! :
Wednesday, September 16, 2015
Sunday, September 13, 2015
I was set for a quiet afternoon at home when I read that the outdoor sculpture show at Maudslay State Park started today. This is an (almost) annual 3-week show that I discovered in the park two years ago. Last year was an off year so when I saw the announcement in the Boston Globe I knew I needed to visit.
The mist disappeared as I was driving to the park, then reappeared as I arrived. For the most part I walked through mist with just a bit of rain.
I loved seeing the out-of-place sculptures.
Posted by Denise Goldberg at 6:06 PM
Saturday, September 12, 2015
Thursday, September 10, 2015
Wednesday, September 09, 2015
Tuesday, September 08, 2015
Monday, September 07, 2015
Saturday, September 05, 2015
It's time for boarding a plane, for flying, for a traveling night heading to the east. I was originally booked on a flight tomorrow morning but I decided to fly overnight instead. I know I'll need to steal a few hours during the day for some sleep, but I expect to have at least a partial active day.
Maybe as I fly I'll dream of the skydiving demonstration I saw this morning, presented by the Wings of Blue U.S. Air Force Skydiving Team. I'm in awe at the skill and guts of the members of the team - it was awesome to be able to watch (with my feet firmly planted on the ground).
Photo courtesy of the Wings of Blue Demonstration Team
It was still dark out when we got up this morning. Denise said that we needed to go to the balloon festival. The first wave of balloon inflation and launches was scheduled to start at 7 AM, and we didn't know how far we'd need to walk to get there. We were pretty lucky in finding a parking spot; we weren't too far from the park.
It was pretty amazing to watch the balloons transform from flat material to big floating balloons. The colors were bright. Some of the balloons were just regular balloon shapes, some were characters out of a book.
I'm very glad we were up and about early this morning; that was fun!
Friday, September 04, 2015
Today was a day to explore a new place, the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge. It was a solo wandering day, just Denise and me and Blue.
The refuge is northeast of Denver. It started as farmland and was then used as a chemical weapons manufacturing facility for World War II, as a place to manufacture agricultural chemicals (by Shell Chemical Co.), and then for the production of Cold War weapons. I think all of those things are pretty scary, don't you? The thing that is very cool is that the land was cleaned up and is now a home for birds and animals.
We started in the visitor center, looking at the exhibits, reading about the history of the refuge, and learning about the animals that live there. Next we headed out on the Wildlife Drive Auto Tour. It was ok to stop and look anywhere along that road although when we were in the section of the refuge that runs through the bison enclosure we had to stay in the car. No bison crossed our path but we did see deer in several different locations. Once they were walking toward us on the trail. We stood still and watched until they saw us and ran away.
Transition to a National Wildlife Refuge
In the early 1980s, the Army and Shell began an extensive environmental cleanup under the oversight of federal, state, and local regulatory agencies. Soon after, a roost of bald eagles was discovered prompting the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to become involved in managing wildlife at the site. The discovery also led Congress to designate the site as a national wildlife refuge in 1992. In the mid-1990s, a unique public-private partnership formed among the U.S. Army, Shell Oil Co., and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. As cleanup progressed and projects met federal and state regulatory requirements, the Army transferred land to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to establish and expand the Refuge. The Arsenal’s cleanup program was completed in 2010 and the Refuge has reached its final size of 15,000 acres making it one of the largest urban refuge's in the country.
from the about page on the refuge's web site
There were trails around some lakes; that made Denise happy. She likes being in the mountains but she always likes seeing water, especially when the water is smooth and reflecting. We walked around two lakes, one small, one a bit bigger. We drove some more, then returned to walk near the lakes again.
Thursday, September 03, 2015
Today we decided to drive for a bit so we could walk across the bridge over Royal Gorge. The Arkansas River flows at the bottom of the gorge, and it looks like it is very far away.
From the park's web site:
One of the deepest gorges in Colorado, the Royal Gorge is approximately 10 miles long with the Arkansas River running through it with granite walls towering over 1,000 feet. The gorge was created some three million years ago when a trickle of water first began to slowly carve a canyon out of the solid granite bedrock. That trickle is now the raging Arkansas, one of America’s longest rivers. The Arkansas river continues to carve its' depth at a rate of about a foot every 2,500 years.
There were some vehicles ferrying people across the bridge. When they were crossing the bridge it really bounced. The bouncing happened even when there were only people walking on the bridge. I wonder if different spots on the bridge are more susceptible to bouncing than others.
We're back at the house now. After we returned from Royal Gorge Denise went for what turned out to be a quick walk. She turned back when she started hearing thunder. There as only been light rain so far, along with some strong wind too.
Wednesday, September 02, 2015
I'd seen the chapel at the United States Air Force Academy from the road; I wanted to see it up close too.
This afternoon we headed to the entrance to the base that was open to the public, driving to the location of the chapel, then walking across the open areas. It's an impressive and fascinating structure. According to the Cadet Chapel page on the U.S. Air Force Academy web page the construction was started in 1959 and completed in 1963 at a cost of $3.5 million dollars.
Yesterday was a very long driving day. Overall we ended the day to the south and west of where we started, after following lots of different roads. We did a lot of turning, heading south for a while, then west, then south again. At the end of the day we ended in Colorado Springs, our home for the next few days.
We had a pretty quiet day today, going for some relatively short walks. Our first walking spot was in Garden of the Gods. It looked different today; when we first visited here last November there was snow on the ground.
Late in the afternoon we headed out again, this time following some trails in the land behind the house. We bounced on the trails for about an hour. The grass is pretty tall so I needed to ride in Denise's camera bag for a bit to be able to see. Then we found another trail that was a bit clearer so I could bounce on my own.