Denise Goldberg's blog

Sunday, September 30, 2012

SweeTango apples

I saw a new-to-me apple in Whole Foods today, SweeTangos. It's apple season, and while I usually bounce between some favorite varieties I decided to give them a try.

According to the apple is a cross between a Honeycrisp (a favorite of mine) and a Zestar! (which I've never seen). I just took my first bite, and oh! I like SweeTango apples!

still in bloom

I headed to Stevens-Coolidge Place late this afternoon. Even though some of the trees in the area are showing the colors of autumn I wanted to see if the gardens were still in bloom. And... they are!

I saw trees wearing green, trees wearing signs of autumn, and late summer flowers too.

lingering color, a flower as the season moves into autumn

A few more flowers from today's walk can be viewed in the gallery Autumn colors 2012 starting with this photo and ending here.

magpie posing

magpie posing, Rocky Mountain National Park

Saturday, September 29, 2012

shimmer the end of my Rocky Mountain wander, heading to the airport

The shimmering water of this lake in Longmont, Colorado pulled me off of the road momentarily. I knew I had plenty of time before my flight; a stop to absorb (more) beauty is always welcome.

shimmering water in a lake in Longmont Colorado

autumn colors

I was surprised when I returned home from Colorado to find leaves in bright colors. I noticed some trees wearing a brownish tinge (instead of pure bright green) early last week; I suppose that should have been a signal that there would be early color this year.

Most of the trees are still green but there are pockets of bright colors too.

maple leaves wearing bright orange

A few more photos can be seen in the gallery Autumn colors 2012.

Friday, September 28, 2012

on the tundra

I followed a narrow path from Medicine Bow Curve on Trail Ridge Road, a path that led across the tundra high in the Rocky Mountains.

high on the tundra

A sign along one of the trails in the tundra protection area held this quote:
The alpine tundra is a land of contrast and incredible intensity, where the sky is the size of forever and the flowers the size of a millisecond.
Ann Zwinger
Land Above the Trees
You are entering a special world. Life here is strained by scouring winds and bitter cold, and only the hardiest survive.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

a glimpse of Gem Lake

What a perfect name!

Gem Lake is small, a perfect gem. It sits high in the mountains, surrounded by (painted) rock that reminds me of Red Rock Canyon outside of Las Vegas. The lake is situated in the Lumpy Ridge area of Rocky Mountain National Park.

Gem Lake, Rocky Mountain National Park

temporarily closed

Oh wow! My friend Gromit wrote today to tell me that our timing was perfect - Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park was closed today because of snow. It closed at 8:45 AM between Rainbow Curve and Milner Pass, reopening sometime in the afternoon. I wonder what happens if you're on the road when it is closed.

I'm so glad we turned around yesterday instead of risking dodging snow on that skinny rolling road!

--- Rover
Rover at Gem Lake, Rocky Mountain National Park

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

snow (flurries)!

My flight was scheduled to leave Denver at 6:50 PM, and my decision about where to wander today had a travel factor in it. I didn't want to risk a hike that might take longer than I expected. I pondered a few options and decided to drive part of the way across Trail Ridge Road in the hopes of seeing it in slightly different light.

I reached the Forest Park viewpoint and was walking out to the end of the walk when I saw some white floating in the air. Uh oh! I asked someone else if I was seeing things; he confirmed that I was seeing snow flurries. And oh! I was still walking around in shorts! He also told me that he had just turned back from a bit higher when he encountered snow squalls. I decided that was a good turnaround point for me, descending to slightly warmer temperatures.

I stopped as colors pulled my eyes to the side, standing and enjoying the scenery, chatting with other travelers, and walking a bit. The temperature was in the low 50s. I stopped to walk across a grassy meadow with mountain views and wandering streams. I started feeling rain drops, but I kept walking until the rain got heavier. Time to walk back to the car...

The car was kind enough to show me that the temperature was 52 degrees. I started driving, and the rain got even heavier. The temperature dropped to 40 degrees in what seemed like an instant. Yikes! It went back up into the high 40s fairly quickly, but what a change!

There were dark gray clouds - yet if I looked to the east I could see some blue. The heavy rain changed to drizzle, then back to rain, then drizzle again.

I decided to head back to Denver a little earlier than expected. The extra time allowed me to stop when I saw water and an interesting sky to the side of the road.

The rain disappeared soon after I left Estes Park although I could see threatening clouds as I approached Denver. I'm waiting for my flight now, looking at bright clouds on one side of the gate area and clouds and raindrops on the other.

Monday, September 24, 2012

elk day

Oh! It was a good elk watching day today! It was a day split into two pieces, but both pieces of the day included watching elk. It was a morning for walking and an afternoon of visiting and walking. Shelley drove here to spend the afternoon with Denise, but first we had the morning to wander in the park.

Denise stopped at one of the park's visitor centers to ask about a short and flat hike. She was afraid that a hike with lots of up would take too much time. The ranger suggested hiking to The Pool in the lower section of the Bear Lake area, the section that didn't have restricted access (by cars) during the day. We parked a little far from the trail head and walked down a very pleasant dirt road lined with aspens. We started down the trail, walking for a bit, wandering off in places to walk down to the river. After about 20 minutes on the trail (not the road!) Denise switched to her long lens to try to grab a photo of a little chipmunk. The chipmunk had other ideas though - he didn't stay still long enough for a photo. We stood there for a bit, watching him run and jump. Then instead of going forward we turned around. Walking down a narrow trail through the woods - pretty as they were painted in bright yellow - didn't feel right to Denise this morning. She had noticed some grassy sections along the road where it looked like we could walk up to the river as it wound through grass. And we could see the mountains there too. No one else was walking on the faint trail we followed. Denise was about to change to her wide lens when she heard a sound.

Oh! There was a big bull elk not too far away - and he was getting closer.

We moved back, and the elk also turned in a slightly different direction. Then we looked through the trees and saw a whole herd of elk, happily munching on the grass and (I think) on some of the trees). We were joined by a couple of other people as we stood and watched and (tried) to get some photos. That was so cool!

After watching for a while, Denise finally did change to her wide lens. She walked away from the elk, heading to a bend in the river where she could see the mountains. There was a bit of a cloud reflection in the river too. Nice.

The morning disappeared quickly. We headed to the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park to meet Shelley. What a wonderful old building! We wandered through the public sections of the hotel looking at the photos on the walls - photos from a long time ago. Then we started walking. We walked down the river walk, following it as far as we could, then walking down the main street of town. Walking back, we stopped at a Thai restaurant for lunch, splitting an order of Pad Thai and an appetizer. That was good!

After food it was time for more walking. We walked past the visitor center to find elk clustered together at the end of the golf course, eating, walking, eating. The bull elk occasionally let out one of his eerie cries. That's such an odd noise!

After standing and watching the elk for a bit, Denise & Shelley decided to continue to walk the path towards Estes Lake. There were more elk hiding in the brush close to the water, a section of wet that was before the lake really began. There were 3 or 4 young males wandering in there, at least one of them scratching his antlers on some branches. No harem there, just young males. One even popped up on the path we were walking. It's a good thing we weren't ready to turn back yet because we didn't want to walk that close to the elk.

We walked to the end of the lake before we turned back. We walked under blue skies decorated with white clouds and we walked under a little bit of rain. When we turned back we could see rays from the sun and what looked like rain over the mountains. By the time we got back to our cars the rain was coming down in big ploppy drops. We didn't get too wet though.

Shelley was right - there was a big beautiful rainbow after the rain stopped!

It was a good morning wander and a very good afternoon visit.

--- Rover

Sunday, September 23, 2012

a gem of a day

We had to drive a bit out of the way to get to the Lumpy Ridge Trailhead this morning. The direct route was under construction and blocked. Denise followed the detour signs to get to the start of our walk. That worked!

Our target for this morning was Gem Lake. The trail is 1.7 miles long, and it was almost entirely uphill. It started with a section of relatively shallow steps, changed to flat (but uphill), and then the upper part of the trail was really big steps. How big? The steps came up to Denise's knees! I rode in the camera bag for that section of the trail; I would have had to bounce really high to be able to jump up those steps!

When Denise saw the height of those steps she was a little concerned about walking down again because one of her knees sometimes doesn't like a steep downhill grade. It was very cool though - there was a family walking down just in front of us, and Denise heard the mom tell one of her daughters to turn sideways to go down those big steps. When Denise asked about that, the woman said that she has a bad knee and that makes it easier for her. Guess what! Denise tried going down the big steps sideways, and her knee felt fine. (It might have felt fine anyway but it seemed like a good thing to try!)

Our walking pace here has been about a half of an hour to cover a mile. That means the 1.7 miles uphill should have taken maybe an hour (a little less, really) - but all uphill made it even slower. Oh, and Denise kept stopping to breathe and to look around. It was a really wonderful walk though. The rocky scenery reminded us of pieces of Red Rock Canyon in Nevada. I bet that's why this section of the park is known as Lumpy Ridge. That's a funny name, isn't it?

We hiked up and up and up. According to the information we had on the rail the elevation gain was (only) 830 feet. It felt like more to me, but the walk was oh so worth it. Just before we reached the top we chatted with some people coming down. They said it was a tiny pond, not a lake. I don't really know what the difference is - at home some bodies of water are called ponds when I think they should be called lakes. I always thought lakes were bigger, but apparently that's not true.

Gem Lake was gorgeous! It was pretty small, surrounded by mostly rocks. There was a kind of a grassy beach in one section, rocks everywhere else. Some of the rocks were flat enough to walk across. And then there was a rock wall that was pretty much vertical, painted with some reds. That rock wall reflected in the water, so pretty. We walked around the parts of the lake where it was possible to walk and then we sat for a bit and enjoyed the beauty. I think I would be happy bouncing back up there again!

The walk down was easier than Denise thought it would be, maybe because of that hint of coming down the big steps sideways.

Our next stop was a place called the Alluvial Fan. That was a waterfall spread across a rocky surface. Oh! There were so many people there! We didn't stay long, choosing to walk through some fields and enjoy the bright yellow aspens.

After the Bear Lake road opened to vehicles at 4 PM we headed back up that road. Denise thought she'd like to see the lake in different light. By that time the sky was kind of gray, definitely different from our first visit under blue skies. We stopped a few times on the way back down just to enjoy the bright yellow leaves on the aspen. Did you know that some of the aspen wore orange leaves too? I thought the leaves always turned pure yellow - but a few scattered trees were orange.

--- Rover worries

Just a quick warning...

I've been having intermittent connectivity problems at my B&B. If you don't see a post from me don't worry - I'm good, just can't connect!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

a ribbon of highway

Today was a day for a bit of a rest. It was a driving day with a bit of walking thrown in as opposed to a full day of walking. It was a day for exploring Trail Ridge Road.

Trail Ridge Road is one of America's national scenic byways. The high point of the road is 12,183 feet above sea level. It runs from Deer Ridge Junction on the east side of Rocky Mountain National Park to the Grand Lake Entrance Station on the west side of the park. At the lower elevations there were brightly colored aspen, woodlands changing to dense pine forests and then to (the treeless) tundra.

The road is 38 miles long, and I have to admit that I didn't quite make it to the end. I left the B&B at 9:30 this morning headed straight to the start of Trail Ridge Road. Six hours later I was probably about 10 miles from the end. I thought about finishing but I still needed to drive back. I knew I didn't want to drive over that road on the edge of daylight, and I also knew that if I continued I was going to need to spend some time outside of the western border of the park. It was the right decision for today.

I was fascinated by the tall thin wood poles along the edge of the road. They clearly were from young pine trees, marking the edges of the road so the plows can find the road after a winter's worth of snow. Apparently it's not uncommon to have 25-foot drifts of snow across the road by the end of the winter.

I stopped often, walking in some spots, just standing and looking in others. There were many spots where I would have liked to stop but where there wasn't a pullout. It wasn't a road where you could stop just anywhere, no shoulders, and no level ground next to the road. There were places with many linked curves, places where the speed limit dropped from 35 MPH to 15 or 20 (depending on the sharpness of the curves). There were others there a longish straight stretches were linked by U-turns giving the impression of a ribbon or road. Beautiful.

I saw some hawks flying and some Clark's nutcrackers and Steller's jays popping around. Chipmunks and ground squirrels ran across the ground in front of me, but the marmots and pikas seemed to be hiding today.

At Rock Cut (12,110 feet of elevation) I walked the Tundra Communities Trail. Walking up was harder than walking down; stopping to breath was helpful. I would love to see the tundra during the short growing season - the small wildflowers must be beautiful. It's funny, as I reached the parking area at the end of my walk a man asked if there was a lake at the end of the hike. When I said there wasn't he declared that if there wasn't a lake it wasn't worth the walk. That seemed a bit wacky to me!

I stopped at Medicine Bow Curve when I saw a sign stating that the mountains (that were visible) were 20 miles away and that Wyoming was 35 miles away. That sign stood on a narrow trail, a trail that seemed to be calling me for a walk. I walked to the end of the trail. It got fainter and fainter, then disappeared. There was another woman walking out there too - we looked at each other, and both decided to turn back at that point. There were subtle changes in colors, some spots dark from cloud shadows, some from darker groundcover.

Another spot for a bit of a walk was near Milner Pass. The sight of Poudre Lake pulled me in for a look after I walked just a bit on the other side of the road.

It took 6 hours to get to my turnaround spot, and almost 2 hours to get back to the B&B from that point. As I approached Hidden Valley there was a line of almost stopped cars. We crawled along at between 5 and 10 miles per hour for probably a good 2 miles. I assumed that there were animals in the road, but there was nothing visible when I reached the point at which cars started moving again. It could have been an animal block or it could have been a sun block from the late afternoon angle of the sun.

It was another good day.

Friday, September 21, 2012

lake to lake to...

A good early breakfast started my day. The first course was a baked pear topped with a bit of cinnamon, sitting in cream flavored with a bit of vanilla. Yum! That was followed by an omelet loaded with vegetables.

I was on the way to Bear Lake at 7:45, well before the "can't drive into the area" time of 9 AM. I didn't finish my wanders until 5 - after construction stops for the day - so I just had a short delay at the two single-lane sections. That wasn't too bad. I found it interesting that the warnings about the shuttle buses taking a long time didn't appear to be true. I spoke with a few people who took the bus and they said there wasn't a long delay. I wonder if the warnings on the park's web site are from the busier than now summer season.

Today was a day of playing at high elevation. Estes Park is at 7522 feet and Bear Lake is at 9475 feet of elevation. The trails I walked went up from there. The fact that I wasn't walking on a flat surface likely contributed my slow pace, but I suspect getting accustomed to less oxygen played a part as well.

I stared with a loop around Bear Lake. By the time I finished the loop I realized I was wearing too many layers - it was cold this morning and I started with enough layers to be comfortable. Before I started on my hike to Nymph, Dream, and Emerald Lakes I stopped at the car to leave a few layers behind. It's funny - everyone I spoke with recommended hiking to Emerald Lake. I found of the three lakes I preferred the first one, Nymph Lake. It was a pretty walk, the lakes just didn't appeal to me.

Initially I was going to do a loop from Dream Lake to Lake Haiyaha and then on to Mills Lake. When I looked at the map I realized there were over 3 miles between the end of Dream Lake and the turnoff to Mills Lake - and I didn't know anything about the terrain or scenery in those three miles. Instead of doing a loop I headed back to Bear Lake, took a break, then headed on an out-and-back walk to Mills Lake. I don't think I saved any miles (of walking) but I think the scenery was a better fit for me.

I think I walked 10 1/2 or 11 miles today. It was a good day but I know I'm ready for a slightly less taxing day. Maybe tomorrow...

Thursday, September 20, 2012

feet on the ground

As expected it's been a long day, a good one too. Our feet were on the ground in Denver before the flight's scheduled arrival time. I watched the baggage carousel spin around for a while and then Denise's bag popped out. We picked up our car and hit the road. But - you know about Denise and rental cars, don't you? The car that was assigned was bigger than she wanted, so she switched. Hertz has something they call "gold choice" at the Denver airport. You can just pick a car from the gold choice stalls and take it instead of your assigned car. After switching cars we started driving. We used a loop road to head north and west, switching to I-25 north and then two smaller roads to the west.

Our first stop in Estes Park was the information center where we picked up some maps and talked with someone there about what we hope to do with our days here. Next, we stopped at a park visitor center to chat with a ranger. We picked up information on hikes in 4 different areas of the park. And oh! we are going to go to Bear Lake. Gromit sent me another email and told me we really shouldn't miss it. It really sounds like it is beautiful up there so I'm glad Denise decided to go in spite of the road construction.

I convinced Denise today was a good day for just some "light" wandering. Driving, a little walking, but no real hikes. Flying makes Denise tired even though all she needs to do is sit still - so a kind of easy going wandering worked well for the afternoon.

We were looking at the bright yellow leaves of the aspen when a woman from Longmont, Colorado came up and started chatting. She is an artist who primarily paints (although she had a camera in her hand today). They talked for a really long time about good places to wander in the park - including walks in the Bear Lake area.

Next we stopped at Beaver Meadows. We didn't go there to see beaver though; we went to see elk. Did you know that elk bugle? It's a really interesting sound, kind of multipitched. We stayed there for a while, watching the animals and listening to their sound.

The Anniversary Inn is our home away from home for this trip. No one else is here tonight, and that turns out to be a good thing for our hiking plans tomorrow. Breakfast is usually later but Roger is going to fix breakfast at 7:15 so Denise can drive past the construction section on Bear Lake Road before 9 AM. It's ok to drive on the road before 9 and after 4, and if you drive in before 9 you can drive out whenever you'd like. But if you're not in there by 9 then you have to take the shuttle bus. That wouldn't be bad except there have been delays on the bus. I think I'd better remind Denise to take her Kindle tomorrow in case we have to sit and wait in the car for a long time.

This feels like a good "early to bed" night...

--- Rover


First step... I'm at the Manchester airport with a decaf Americano (oh, so good that Starbucks opens early!), waiting. I was a little concerned about waking up in time for my early morning flight. I think that worry translated into immediately popping up when my alarm buzzed, a good thing!

My flight is scheduled to leave at 6:30 with an arrival time into Denver at 9 AM. Very cool - instead of a travel day I have (almost) an entire day to wander.


Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Wow - that was fast. We're packed and ready to take off (even though we're not leaving tomorrow). You know about Denise and packing, right? She feels calmer if she packs a day early. She says that way if she forgets something she still has time to remember it. I'm not sure that makes sense but if it makes Denise happy then I think that's a good thing.

I helped by organizing things while Denise was at work today, but the fast pack was probably because of the practice we had with our trip to Wyoming. Denise brought some slightly heavier layers this time because the weather forecast says that the overnight temperatures might be in the thirties some nights. Oh, and because if we're high in the mountains it might be cooler during the day too.

My red coat keeps me toasty warm so I don't need as many layers as Denise does. I also know I can always hide in the camera bag if it gets too cold and windy. Or I can jump into a pocket in Denise's fleece jacket. That's always a good warm spot.

--- Rover

Sunday, September 16, 2012

doubled stems

doubled stems, pink against yellow

Colorado, soon...

I can count the days before we leave on one paw. That means it's time to start writing about our upcoming wander in Rocky Mountain National Park. Denise visited there once before, in 2001, but this is a first visit for me. Oh! Denise just told me that she thinks it will feel like visiting a new place for her too...

It's fun to see new places, isn't it?

My friend Gromit wrote to me about the restrictions on the road to Bear Lake. I wonder if we'll follow that under construction road or if we will find other places to wander. The delays sound pretty bad, and I know that Denise won't be happy with a long wait.

Here are two warnings from the Rocky Mountain National Park web page:

Shuttle Riders Please Be Advised: Bear Lake Route shuttles heading both to and from Moraine Park Visitor Center and Bear Lake are experiencing significant delays of more than 2 hours in transit times in addition to wait times at the shuttle stops. Demand can exceed the capacity of the buses which increases wait times even longer.

If you plan to board the shuttles, please be prepared with water and snacks and expect a lengthy trip.

Private vehicles will be allowed both directions prior to 9:00 a.m. and after 4:00 p.m. Visitors in private vehicles, who make the 9:00 a.m. cutoff time, will be allowed to travel eastbound throughout the day. All visitors, in private vehicles or shuttle buses, should expect at least two 20-minute delays both west and eastbound through the construction area.

We're going to stop at a visitor center first thing. Denise didn't buy any maps or books (yet) - she's been reading web sites to get information. A chat with the rangers will be a good start for us.

Did you know that the Teton range is a subrange of the Rocky Mountains? And that the Rocky Mountains stretch from British Columbia to New Mexico? That's a really long way, more than 3000 miles (4828 kilometers). I guess that means we're only going to be touching a very small piece of these mountains. A small piece is good though; it's supposed to be beautiful!

--- Rover
Rover at Grand Teton National Park

Saturday, September 15, 2012

a late season rose

a late season rose

chasing butterflies

I headed to the New Hampshire coast this afternoon to visit Fuller Gardens. Roses are still in bloom, and the bushes have grown quite tall.

I walked the garden, enjoying the colors. And then... I spent a good part of my visit chasing butterflies, amazed at their flitting, landing on flowers for what seemed like seconds, quickly taking to the air again.

butterfly posing, sitting still for just a second

A few more photos from today's visit can be viewed in the gallery Fuller Gardens - 2012 starting with this photo and ending here.

Friday, September 14, 2012

two colors

Looking into the light shows petals in two colors, lighter underside, brighter top(side).

petal sides in different colors

Monday, September 10, 2012

photos! Wyoming

Photos from my wanders in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks are loaded into galleries, ready for viewing. Start with the top level gallery, Wyoming parks, 2012, or click on the photos below to enter a specific gallery.

Yellowstone National Park:

Yellowstone National Park

Grand Teton National Park:

Grand Teton National Park

National Elk Refuge:

National Elk Refuge

Interested in words? You can find my ramblings in the blog entries tagged Wyoming 2012-08.

splash of color

a splash of color

Saturday, September 08, 2012

return to Parker River

Today was my first visit to the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge since March 31st - the day before the birds took sole ownership of the beach. The refuge is a nesting area for endangered piping plovers; the beaches close on April 1st each year and reopen when the birds have moved on.

I arrived on the beach when the tide direction was changing, low tide switching to tide coming in. Usually a low tide walk is an easy walk. This one was not. I could see the high tide mark (from 6 hours earlier) much higher than the ocean's edge. The beach was slightly sloped from the edge of the sand dunes to partway across the expanse of sand. There was a steep slope leading to the water's edge, a very slanted surface for walking. I suppose it was a good thing I needed to walk that slope in two different directions to even out the odd placement of my feet! And oops! sorry - I wasn't able to capture that interesting angle in a photo.

The waves crashed on the angled beach. The wind picked up granules of sand and drove them through the air.

As much as I understand and respect the beach closure for the piping plovers (after all, it is a wildlife refuge) I'm always glad to have access again.

crashing waves, Parker River National Wildlife Refuge

clouds, ponds, sand bars... on the inland side of the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge

A few more photos from today's visit can be found in the gallery Parker River - 2012 starting with this photo and ending here.

Thursday, September 06, 2012

early morning at oxbow bend

On my last morning at Grand Teton National Park I headed out early. I stopped at a couple of spots on my way to my morning destination of Oxbow Bend, still catching some early morning light there.

This is a view from Oxbox Bend without the background mountains; they were obscured by background smoke and haze.

early morning light at Oxbox Bend, Grand Teton National Park

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

no service

My phone is working again after two days without service. I still have an old-fashioned landline, nothing fancy, and this is the first time I can remember being without telephone service. I know, I do have a cell phone. Unfortunately the cell phone coverage in the town where I live isn't great. This outage made me think about switching to FIOS, but as it turns out FIOS in the area was out too. Yikes!

The cause?

And it was all because a homeless man’s mattress caught on fire, burning through scores of copper wires and fiber-optic cables that make up the backbone of Verizon’s telecommunications network for the region.

Quote courtesy of the Eagle-Tribune

It sounds like a comedy of errors. Some homeless people cut through a fence under a bridge, setting mattresses on top of PVC pipes that carried both fiber-optic cables and copper wire. A mattress caught fire, firefighters arrived but were delayed by "High Voltage" warning signs. The fire melted the PVC pipes carrying the cables and wires, destroying or damaging nearly all of the wires. What a mess!

I guess I should consider myself lucky that I only lost my phone service. There were people who lost phones, internet, and television services. I'd like to think an outage like this can be avoided in the future. I wonder...

If you're interested in more of the story, click to the Eagle-Tribune story, How vulnerable are we? A burning mattress brought down telecom giant: Could it happen again?.


I walked into the rose garden at The Stevens-Coolidge Place yesterday afternoon, looking for roses.

My eye was caught by a small cluster of lily pads in a circular pool. There were bright green pads, no lilies. I had to look a second time before I saw a frog (calmly) hiding in plain sight.

frog sitting with lily pads, hiding in plain sight

Monday, September 03, 2012

a garden walk

Sunshine and a cool breeze created an afternoon perfect for a garden walk. I headed to the Stevens-Coolidge Place to check the colors remaining as we head into September.

Crisp yellow against blue pulled me to a bed of sunflowers.

sunflower, a view from the back

A few more flowers jumped into my camera this afternoon. You can view them in the gallery starting with this photo and ending here.

Sunday, September 02, 2012

to the sea

Halibut Point State Park called to me today. I feel like it was just yesterday when I made my first visit to this beautiful park, but when I looked back at my photos I saw that my previous visit was in mid-July. Hmm... where has the time gone?

The park was a very popular spot today. I arrived when there were still spaces available in the parking lot; when I left there was a line of cars waiting for entry.

I walked paths in both the state park and the adjoining land owned by the Trustees of Reservations. I spent some time sitting on the rocks close to the water. Visiting just after high tide provided sitting space without the worry of getting wet.

I need to keep this park high on my list of places to visit; I'd really like to see it dressed in autumn colors and I'd like to see it in snow too.

calm ocean, at Halibut Point State Park

More photos from today's visit can be viewed in the gallery Halibut Point, quarry and ocean starting with this photo and ending here.

mountains, trees, reflections

Oh! I need to keep playing with words since Denise and I will be heading to Colorado soon; I'm sure I'll be writing about that trip too!

We've been home for a week now, and as is normal for Denise she is still sorting through the photos that jumped into her camera in Wyoming. She tried something different this time. In the past she tried to go through the photos just once, discarding, adjusting, deciding what to keep. This time she did a quick pass through all of the photos and tossed a bunch immediately - the ones she knew she didn't want to share. Now she's going through a second time, and she said (she thinks) this is going much faster. I told her she has plenty of time before we leave for Colorado. I don't think she needs to worry until I can count the days before our trip on one paw, and I'm pretty sure she will be finished well before then.

We're going on a wander near home today, with camera. I'm guessing she'll publish the photos from today's wander before finishing the set from Wyoming.

In the meantime, here's a photo of mountains and trees and reflections from Grand Teton National Park for you to enjoy.

--- Rover

grand teton national park, reflecting mountains and trees