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Last Weekend In The White Mountains. February 9, 2010

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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I spent last weekend in New Hampshire’s White Mountains, diggin’ the Mount Washington Valley Ice Festival, a yearly celebration of ice climbers and their craft.

I used to be part of that scene, back when I had rotator cuffs, and will post a little bit about that later.

But for now, here are some scenic shots from my trip.

Firstly, Mount Washington, as seen from the banks of the Saco River just outside of North Conway:

This is the highest point in the Northeast, and though it’s not much over 6,000 feet in elevation, it hosts some of the most extreme weather in the world, for many years holding the record for recorded wind speed at over 230 miles per hour.

That’s windy.  I spent three weeks on Alaska’s Denali, and despite the fact that we hunkered down in some of the worst weather they’d had in a decade, it didn’t hold a candle to what I’d endured on numerous winter Mount Washington trips.

Anyway, here’s a Gizmo (my 400mm L-series lens) shot of sunset on the summit:

Taken from the same place, at about the same time.

Gawd, I loves me some Gizmo!

I was there with my photographic mentor Lizz, who had scoped out this spot on the banks of the Saco River.  She was busy snagging images as I did the same:

There was plenty to see, from the grand scenic down to the details.  Here’s one of a stranded ice chunk and a waning crescent moon:

The day ended with bitter winds which drove us to the pub for burgers and nachos, but not before I stopped to snag a quickie of the developing sunset:

The next day was spent in a slow retreat southward, with a couple of stops along the way for photography.  Here’s a view eastward from Kankamagus Pass, of a snowstorm in the area I’d just left:

And another of a footbridge ove the Pemigewasset River:

All in all, it was a satisfactory trip, though I froze my butt off, did minimal climbing (more on that later,) and got only a few photos for my efforts.

Ruby Tuesday – A Suspicious Barn. February 8, 2010

Posted by littlebangtheory in Ruby Tuesday!.
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A big red barn glares suspiciously at a pair of ominously leaning silos:

Kind of a lightweight entry into the Ruby Tuesday meme, but that’s what I have this week.

For more compelling examples of Ruby in our daily lives, visit Mary over at Work of the Poet.

Up And Running! February 5, 2010

Posted by littlebangtheory in Uncategorized.
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The phone’s back on, there’s oil in the tank, and I’m packing for a weekend at the North Conway Ice Climbing Festival!

Thank you all for your words of support, and I’ll see you when I get back.

Meanwhile, Back At The Laundromat… February 5, 2010

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature, Love and Death, macro photos.
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…I’m mooching a bit of wireless service, ’cause we’re still without phone/internet back at the Rolling J Farm.

It’s a bump in the road, but the road goes on.

So yesterday I went back to the Smith College greenhouses, and being a weekday morning there were very few people there.  This meant I could bring in a tripod without being too much in the way.

Among the many rooms of botanical delights is a tropical room, where thirty-foot plants sport eight-foot leaves:

The humidity was so high in here that I had to repeatedly mop my lens!

There was a cool cacao tree, Theobroma cacao :

I found it interesting that the pods grow on the trunk and larger branches:

Other rooms with more temperate climates are filled with oranges, lemons and grapefruit:

Lots of cool foliage in here, including Black Elephant Ears, Alocasia cuprea :

A part of my goal was to re-shoot some of the plants I got this past weekend as well as others which weren’t suited to Ziggy, my 50mm macro lens.  This time I had a pad and pen so I could actually let you nice folks know what you’re looking at.

Here’s another shot of what I had provisionally called a “red agave,” but is actually a bromeliad, “Elaine Earth Star” :

There were lots of lilies in here, including this Ovitatta, or Variegated Beet Lily:

And the orchids are in full bloom.  This is one I shot earlier but now have a name for, Paphiopedilum mondial,  or “Magnificum:”

And lastly, a pair of blossoms on the long trailer of a Phalaenopsis , or “Moth orchid:”

OK then, I’m off.  Gotta go feed the wood stove!

We Are Experiencing Technical Difficulties… February 3, 2010

Posted by littlebangtheory in Love and Death.
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Between a ‘puterbox declaring, “Hard drive failure iminent, save important work externally,” and subsequent safe boots, and the sad fact that our telephone has been (hopefully temporarily) shut off, I’m gonna be a scarce puppy ’till some things get worked out.

Posting this from outside the laundromat one town over, which offers unsecured internet access.

Now I’m going home, where there’s no phone and no heat, ’cause we ran out of oil.

Namaste, and better luck to the rest of you.

Ruby Tuesday – More From The Greenhouses of Smith College! February 1, 2010

Posted by littlebangtheory in macro photos, Ruby Tuesday!.
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Here are a couple more shots from the Smith College greenhouses.  The skies were dark and I was shooting hand-held, with high ISOs and long exposures, but a couple of things did come out:

This complex blossom has some ruby bits:

Sorry, I didn’t get its name.

And this little beauty, perhaps a red agave?

I’m hoping to get back there early in the day, maybe even tomorrow, with a tripod and bag of lenses; if I do, you’ll be the first to know.

Thanks to Mary over at Work of the Poet for this Rubilicious meme!