A Warm Winter Day

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It is December 12, 2015, Saturday and the weather is warm. No snow to capture or a need to even wear a jacket! Everyone was out either driving, dog walking, hiking, biking or just walking. I spotted a mature woman walking and she had a large black pack strapped to her back, and sporting luminous reflective wear for traveling on a busy route. She could have been someones mother, sister? We do live in scary times!

dec12-1At a vacant parking lot a group of hunters congregated and I became concerned if they were hunting down neighborhood black bears.  A mechanic is in the holiday spirit and is now displaying an inflated jolly snowman alongside the American flag. At night it glows with bacteria looking creatures running throughout the entire snowman.

Another item popped up on the major road for the “Things I find on the side of the road,” series. It’s a very strange item, unexpected, especially for this time of year! Click here for the story attached to that topic.

I did make it over to the trail and overall the day air became extremely still, overcast, the lake was glassy in appearance. No snow but a video of today’s captures.

So – where is the SNOW?

 

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Autumn Ends, Winter Begins

Today I took a bicycle spin into the trail.  It was just after noon time and the sky was clear blue. The lighting was overwhelming even in the woods. Shadows cast everywhere, the light was very strange  and also experienced many moods for one day. I decided not to edit out any photos and you will find part one to be very different from part two. In a way the day captures become a study about light that I want to share.

Today my bicycle had a flat tire. It was a slow leak and not noticed until the end of the day at home. That tire did get a few years wear and allot of miles, so I really cannot complain. The next series of nature captures will be when it snows! I have allot of material to start creating, experimenting on the art-side.

Fall-icious part ten- A Rainy Day!

 

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The start of this week had absolutely gorgeous weather. For the past few weeks I was relentlessly blowing leaves to earn my keep. Lacey dog needed a flea bath because all that fun in the blowing leaves had a price for her to pay. For a mid November the air generally has been warm, some grasses maintained a vibrant green and bright yellow dandelions continued to bloom by the roadside. Mostly the colorful leaves have departed and bare naked trees stand waiting for winters first cover of heavy snowfall. At times boredom sank in while making a daily round by foot in the chilled rain but the bright red berries dotting the shoreline brought a smile .

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Red Berries at Lakeside

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The Trail by Cranberry Lake

At the local Cranberry Lake dock two husky men attempted to fish. One man wore a navy blue T-shirt with bold white lettering, advertising a trucking company. Luckily they both found employment at a trucking company, one has five children and told me that he was grateful to be working. “Years ago the economy was not that bad when I started my family but today there are mounting economic concerns,” he explained. His friend just grinned and nodded while continuing to spin a fishing line into the lake water. He diligently worked the line to gain a strategic position that would bring in a good catch. Hopefully on this rainy day the forlorn trucker will be able to provide enough fresh fish to feed his entire hungry family. I picked up my walking pace and decided to head over to the entrance of the Sussex Branch trail.

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The Sussex Branch Trail

Surprisingly my eyes could now search through the woods without any distraction of autumns plentiful foliage. A squirrel scurried up a fallen log and thrust its body onto a large tree. This year there were tons of acorns and walnuts for animals to have a huge feast. Undoubtedly, their tree lined nests must be overloaded with enough supplied nuts to last well into another season!

With heavy rainfall comes miniature seas of water and a huge black puddle crossed my path. Scaling the muddy side and looming over this newly created body of water with a duck umbrella in hand to take a few reflective photos was not an easy task. The rain drops created rippling ringlets for floating leaves to be tossed around like miniature boats. Fairies came to my mind as groups of colorful leaves could still be found against the wet wooded landscape. It was a contemplative day and I pondered about how one could edit most captures to create an imaginary land waiting to be discovered.

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Black Puddle

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Floating Boat Leaves

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Reflections in Black Puddle

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Trees Surging Upward

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A raindrop becomes a beacon of light!

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Foliage In The Woods

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Red Berries In The Woods

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Rain-drops adorn berries

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The Birch Tree in the Woods

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The Silent Woods I

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The Silent Woods II

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Golden Mystery

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Captured Leaves

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Forget Me Not I

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Forget Me Not II

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No Trespassing

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Fairy Dust Trail

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ColorWoods

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Fall Foliage In The Woods

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Green

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Pool of Water I

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Pool of Water II

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Pool of Water III

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The Dangling Brown Leaf

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Fairy Woods

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The Trail House

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Untouched

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Autumn Calling

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Swamp-side

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The Trail Continues

Fall-icious part eight

This past Sunday was too much fun on the trail. I discovered that trails are not only made for exploration of nature but of people too. Fall-icious includes the celebration of meeting life. Word is getting out that the Sussex Branch Trail, New Jersey is THE PLACE to locally absorb everything nature has to offer. (By the way I would like to make a shout out, if you can financially donate to this trail you can click here and make a much-needed donation at their website.) I noticed many hikers, bikers taking the time for pictures. The day was exceptionally crispy cool and sunny. Excellent shadows cast against the woods and reflecting detailed images, colors onto brooks. A wonderful setting for capturing natures seasonal change that is now quickly spiraling into winter. It was quite an unusual day! Nothing that I have ever experienced before but truly a delight! I parked the bicycle onto the side of the trail and found people to be much friendlier. One couple stumbled out of a heavily leafed debris trail and decided to take a breather. They explained to me the best time enjoyed on the trail happens when it snows. It is a winter wonderland experience with snow-capped trees bending over the trail. This couple also uses trail time to reconnect with each other. Further down the trail hikers could be heard coming towards my direction but these campers were not four-legged prancing albino deer. Two gorgeous white greyhounds, yes they were white and not grey!  The greyhounds were a bit camera-shy and very anxious to continue down the trail. During the course of this beautiful day a studious looking character that probably knew all the tree types allowed me to take a photo. A miniature collie, however, I was pleasantly corrected by its owner that this was no ordinary small collie but a Sheltie dog.  As I continued on my journey two darlings captivated my eye! Both were boldly strutting their stuff and very investigative about what adventure lay ahead on the trail. I could tell these pooches were loving every minute of the day too! The tiny Boston Terrier was bouncing around and flashing her stunning glittering diamond studded collar. A bit over dressed for the trail but her security Bull Dog was prepared to take care of any bear bandit lurking behind a tree or rock!

Who could forget sweet back packing Gracey!  A total prepper, ready for any disaster on the trail. Her owner said to be ready because Gracey is the type of dog that loves to lick.  And, she was beaming friendliness like my lick loving dog Lacey!

I took the time to ask the owners how they came about finding their perfect pet. And you will be pleased to know that the owners took the time to find a rescue group for that particular breed. My trail visit was indeed the perfect capture of a truly happy day! For those that can support a shelter, rescue group, please do it now! The following captures are just a few taken from today! There are still more Fall-icious captures to come! 🙂

Fall-icious part seven

Today, Saturday, the sky has cast a very gloomy gray color. There is a dense cloud cover with no sunlight to shimmer through the woods. What was once decorated with vibrant color is now a swamp preparing itself for winter. In a thick brush I could barely see a black bear swinging its head back and forth holding nose in air. As usual, it was trying to cross over a busy route. I did not stop and just yelled out “bear go back”. November weather is warm and the bears hesitate going into hibernation. Luckily there are still some wild berries and grapes. But the berries are drying out. And, it may be the reason for the bears to be hitting local garbage cans for food. This past week, the night before garbage pick up, overturned cans littered the street. In a few weeks if the weather continues to be warm there will be an adjustment to their food palate. Today I will stay off the trails. Over to the side of a parking lot, piled up by the wind were striking yellow and green leaves. Naturally bright and in need of no sunshine,  I just had to capture its beauty. Seedlings sheltered and nestled in-between golden-yellow, vibrant green leaves.

Surprisingly, my Fall-icious Collection keeps growing! Even though the season is winding down and the trees, foliage are becoming stark naked, patches of Autumn colors drapes the grounds.

And I still have previous weeks captures to post …

But in a few short weeks this will end. Sigh!  I may squeeze in another fall season at this location while working to construct a tiny house on wheels from found materials etc. The plan is to rent land and spend time at farms to gain more creative inspiration and applying it to canvas. It would be grand to erect a portable framed out canvas wall tent as an art studio. Living off grid will also include its daily tasks of collecting wood, gardening and maintaining a site. Overall, it will be a healthier lifestyle. It is a must to venture out seeking peace of mind and an alternate lifestyle when there is absolutely no sustainable employment in sight at cities, suburbs. It makes sense to make every day a Fall-icious day! 

‘Alone With The Moss And Rocks’

Series Title: ‘Spring Transformation’

Title: ‘Alone With The Moss And Rocks’

This little swamp cabbage appears to be alone but probably not for long in these richly fertilized woods.

'Alone With The Moss And Rocks' by elizabeth mclaughlin

‘Alone With The Moss And Rocks’
by elizabeth mclaughlin