Friday, December 30, 2005


I spent the morning at the marsh with my camera.  I have missed my visits there, I always feel so at peace when I walk the paths that connect the many ponds and creeks.  Even the animals greet me with almost enthusiastic familiarity.  Perhaps its just wishful thinking on my part, but I always feel like I'm at home there among the cattails and cottonwoods.

Thursday, December 29, 2005


My lens finally died from injuries sustained by my unfortunate collision with the cactus patch this past summer.  My husband tried gallantly to revive it but the damage was too great.  To ease my grief, my husband bought me a new lens.  This one is a 55-200 mm zoom, kind of an in between lens, but very nice. These mule deer graciously posed as my first subjects.

What I like best about the new lens is that I made fewer lens changes to get the variety of shots that presented themselves to me.  Hopefully this will result in less stress and wear on my lenses and camera.  I have come to the conclusion that the best way to prevent wear on my camera because of the constant lens changing would be to buy a camera for each lens.  That way I'll never have to change the lens and risk getting the camera and lens dirty!  Sounds perfectly logical to me!

Saturday, December 17, 2005


My intentions this morning were to photograph the moon as it hung over Pikes Peak at daybreak.  Unfortunately my camera had been plugged into the computer all night and the battery was completely drained.  With my back-up battery MIA, I had to wait while my battery charged, and in that time snow clouds stole over the mountain and hid the moon from view.  I settled for an impromptu visit to Manitou Springs.

Manitou Springs is a quaint little tourist town that even the locals love to poke around in.  Many of the shops date back to the turn of the century.  With business seasonal and mostly dependant upon tourism, it takes a special kind of personality to make it in this town.

While all of the other trees shivered beneath bare branches, the hearty pinetrees seem to thrive in the cold and provide lush color in the otherwise barren landscape.  Alas, I too succumbed to the winter chill and had to call it a day after just a couple of hours.

Wednesday, December 7, 2005


When I left the house this afternoon it was 1° .   My husband had told me about a photo op he had passed on his way in to work and I had no trouble finding it.  Steam from some heating vents across the street blew over and against this fence, freezing it and everything in its path.  I was only there for maybe 30 minutes max and by the time I returned to the truck, my fingertips were so cold they felt as if they had each been hammered mercilessly one by one.  I definitely need to invest in some good cold-weather photographers gloves.

This is just one of the many trees that had become encrusted in ice from the steam.  At one point I slipped and fell against the tree.  The ice shattered and it sounded like glass falling.  I half expected the tree to break but it just shook off the splintered ice and bounced back to its original position.  I'm sure I provided the construction crew across the street with entertainment as I slipped and slid across the icy slope but I was bound and determined to get my shots.  I actually only fell once, despite all of the close calls.  Fortunately I was too numb from the cold to feel anything (except for my fingertips!)

After thawing off a little bit I went to the reservoir.  The water was completely iced over and covered with a blanket of snow except for where a pipe emptied runoff from the other reservoirs into it.  There the water still flowed and steamed.  The forecast predicts an overnight low of -11°.  Judging by the clouds surrounding the mountains in the distance it won't be long before the temperatures begin dropping.


I have visited the Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii dozens of times, and each time I visited I was overwhelmed by the same intense emotions.  Each visit, whether it was the first or the 100th, transports the visitor to that tragic and fateful day.

In the early morning hours of December 7, 1941, 2,388 lives were lost.  1,177 were crewmen of the USS Arizona.  Only 75 bodies were ever recovered.  The other 1,102 remain entombed on the wreckage.  If you stand on the Memorial and look down into the water you can see droplets of oil floating up to the surface like dark, iridescent tears from the battleship itself.

The attack on Pearl Harbor marked the change in not only our country but in the world.  Much good has eventually come from the lessons learned, but the toll on all countries involved was great and the lives lost are still honored and mourned.

Tuesday, December 6, 2005


A cold north wind blew winter in over the Rockies and I woke Saturday to find my part of the world covered in a soft blanket of white. By the end of the day there was 6 inches on the ground.

Believe it or not I was not the first person visiting the pond that morning, but the other visitors stayed on the main path.  I wanted to see what one of my favorite places looked like in its winter coat for although I have lived here for 11 years, this was my first visit to the pond after a snowfall.  I was not disappointed.

The whitetail herd that I had befriended over the summer greeted me like a Beverly Doolittle painting.  They are probably used to human presence by now, but I like to think that they recognized me from my many earlier visits.  The fawns have all lost their spots but are still curious.  I look forward to spending more time with them, but duty called and I had to return home to get ready for work.  There is snow in the forecast for tonight and tomorrow.  After taking care of a few errands I plan to spend the rest of my day off at the pond.