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Crawford Notch. October 7, 2011

Posted by littlebangtheory in Art and Nature.
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The rest of Saturday was spent scoping out venues for if/when the rain might stop, knowing full well that it probably wouldn’t (due to the miracle of radio weather reports) and meeting back up with my friend Lizz for dinner at The Moat, a smokehouse-microbrewery in North Conway where everything is recommendable.  I had a huge plate of nachos with smoked-meat chili and ate every last bite, though that determined effort resulted in an ungainly waddle back to my car.

Afterward I noodled my way back up Crawford Notch toward Bretton Woods, where I’d last seen the headwaters of the Ammonoosuc.  I noted a few nice scenes along the way as prospective shoots for the morning, keeping my eye peeled for places where I might sleep without being told to “Move along” by official types (this section of the White Mountain National Forest has lots of campgrounds and expects people to use them, but I’d rather spend my limited bucks on quality glass.)  I settled on the AMC Lodge at the top of the notch, parking directly beneath a sign declaring “For Lodge Guests Only,” cracked the windows to allow my vapors to escape rather than fogging my windows (that’s how they getcha!) and snuggled into my sleeping bag for a comfy night out.

At first light I zipped back down the Notch to a view of Mount Willard which I hoped would capture some of the dawn’s drama:

That’s a flank of Willard on the right, where both Lizz and I have passed many a winter’s day plastered to exhilarating ice climbs, though never together.  It’s funny how we met much later and now have this completely different relationship.

A bit farther down the road I stopped at Silver Cascade, hoping to beat the crowds I’d seen lining the roadside the evening before, and succeeded in snagging this shot despite the continuing wind and rain:

Again, the rainy skies sucked, but the scene was compelling enough to get me to do the bungied-umbrella-thing, and I liked what I was getting.

Then a moose wandered up the road, and with a quick change of lenses (to Gizmo, dontcha know) I got this furry portrait:

I also took one with a bit of panning, generating this sort-of impressionistic rendering of Said Moose:

…and all without paint under my fingernails!  😆

A ways farther down the Notch, Lizz had shared a spot with me with some nice foreground details, though the dramatic background was now lost in the drizzle:

This was how the day went, with foregrounds dancing in the wind and backgrounds obscured by rain and clouds.  The great spruce-clad wall of Mount Webster should have risen from this scene, but only its foothills framed these New England asters:

Each of these shots required a laborious construction against the elements, and none of them really approached their potential – the conditions were just too poor, the atmosphere too full of crap to deliver the images I’d come this far for.

Well, you don’t know if you don’t go, so I went, and I got what I got.

Next up, the ride home.

 

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Comments»

1. beatgrl - October 8, 2011

Fantastic! I enjoyed visiting those locales, and the moose was a treat.

2. kkryno - October 8, 2011

How can a creature be so clumsy-looking and gangly, and so graceful and magestic at one time? Haven’t seen many around this year for some reason. Fun to see this one with wet fur so close up!

3. littlebangtheory - October 8, 2011

beatgrl, yes, it was indeed an unexpected treat. 🙂

And Vikki, That’s so true – they just glide when they gallop along, don’t they? And this one let me get fairly close and play with her. I guess a 125 pound critter doesn’t really phase a magnificent creature like that, eh?

4. lisahgolden - October 8, 2011

Jeez, Ralph! You’re making ME want to enjoy the great outdoors! This post and the one before it are stunning!

5. littlebangtheory - October 9, 2011

Lisa, that’s the point – the natural world is beautiful in all its tortured incarnations, and ought not to be missed, because we’re destroying it much faster than it can regenerate. The more people see that, the greater the chance we can influence the change for the better.

6. susan - October 10, 2011

They are all so beautiful. I hope you know how much your efforts are appreciated.

7. littlebangtheory - October 10, 2011

susan, thanks to your kind comments, I do indeed.


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