Saturday, December 30, 2017

2017-The Year in Pictures

Wow-I realized I hadn't posted to this blog in a year....since the last year in pictures.  Kinda sad, but writing hasn't been at the forefront, nor is making tons of pictures.  I've yet to figure out my time with a 40 hour a week job at the DNR after having a bout of retirement.

 As in the past, these are my favorites, some for their quality ( as a good photograph) some for just the memories of people and places have been lucky enough to experience.  They are also more or less chronological starting early in the year.

A more beautiful place I doubt there is on this planet....for cross country skiiers.  Ramsau Austria with Mt. Dachstein for a backdrop.  I was fortunate enough to be selected as a coach for Special Olympics USA at the World Games there.  Of the different counties I've been to with SO, this may have been the most memorable.  Wonderful people, athletes and landscapes.

John "Alphabet" from North Dakota
The Team-pre-and post races

Black River State Forest-Shale Road
So I started a new job, or should I say a second career?  After 32 years of teaching, I jumped into the Ho-Chunk Nation DNR for a year, then a break and now another natural resources opportunity came along I couldn't pass up.  Working as a Wildlife technician is something different everyday and also puts me out into some beautiful places few others see or take the time to see.  This is a quiet little spot along a state forest road that just had to have a picture made of.

Flooded Aspen-Castle Mound Road, BRSF
This little spot has made these "pages" before.   Their life will be short, as more and more mature and die and I won't make pictures here any longer.  For now, it still surprises me.

Elk Calf-Class of 2017
Part of my job is to organize volunteers for elk calf searches, and when we are givin the "go," we're out trying to find these little cuties.  This one was right in front of me when I spotted it-my first calf.

Blackdeer Property Sedge Meadow

Black River Downpour
For whatever reason, I have a few of these motion blur and it works for me.  Kayak pictures will always have the bow of the boat in it so anything a little different is interesting.

Sand Island Sea Caves
Taken by my good friend Mark, (also my kayak mentor), I had to include it.  A great trip, albeit short because of rough water and approaching rain, it was memorable none the less.

Lake Michigan-Cave Point County Park

Lake Wazee Sunrise
A little gem in Jackson County, lake Wazee is the deepest lake in the state and on the way to work, the sunrise was just one I felt would be most appreciated near its shore.

Potters Flowage-Fall Bouquet
I love the Potters-it's like a little slice of Canada in the heart of the state.  Towering white pine line its shores and the kayak seldom encounters another person.  Paddling heaven.

Battlepoint Flowage giving up her warmth-BRSF

Dike 17 State Wildlife Area

Castle Mound Road Aspens-Fall

Oxbo Pond-BRSF
Just messing around taking multiple exposure with the iphone.  Seems the phone is my everyday camera now and frankly, the iphone 8 is wonderful (and always with me).

Molly-NoDak 2017, Powerline Pond
We sometimes measure our lives in dogs, and Molly has been a good one.  She may not have many years left, but I was happy she made the trip to North Dakota again and performed well.  If there are dog portraits, this is hers.

Homestead-North Dakota
Old barns and falling down buildings are the cliche-right? I don't care, sometimes you still have to make those images.  I've always liked black and white and here, thought how the sunrise cutting the  house in half was interesting.  When I see these out west, I just imagine how damn hard life had to have been.

South Beaver Creek Rooster
 I don't really care if pheasants aren't native to Wisconsin-they are some of the most stunning beauties out there, second only to the wood duck drake IMO.  Besides, they are Molly's favorite gamebird.

The Gun Hunt
Cold, long hours, quiet, peaceful, anticipation, boredom-All of it.

Forest for the Trees-Lincoln County Hunt

GFBD-Levis Mound
Global Fatbike Day.  It's not much work for me and always seems to be fun with fellow fatbikers.  I always meet new people, chat up old friends and an excuse to be out on the trail before winter kicks in.

Monday, January 2, 2017

The Year in Pictures

Paddling Zen

I'd almost forgotten about this annual posting until I was reminded by a few other photographer friends who also do a "year in review" of sorts.  Usually I start this before the 1st of the new year, but a day or two late is okay.  Besides, it is kinda interesting to look back at the past 12 months to see where my camera and I had been.  Fun to follow the seasons and be surprised at unexpected things (a warm thaw, then blast of snow and back again) that I'd forgotten.  Reliving moments in time is not so bad either for knowing where we have been can set a compass stepping forward. (isn't that profound?). 
 This year in pictures may be a bit different that others-iphone images predominate...they say the best camera you can have is the one that's with you. So true.  I'm pretty happy with what can be captured by that tiny sensor, not always great, but better than missing a moment.  Many images were work related-when you're in the field as a wildlife technician, you get to be in a lot of beautiful places and at perfect times of day.  There will be a lot of paddling ones too-I'll apologize for that off the bat-kayaking has really been something I love and the camera is always there.
As in the past-the images that follow are not perfectly chronological, but close.  They are also not all A+ or even A grade images-some make the cut here just because.  Because I like them or the place or the time.  Hopefully, some are good images irregardless.  2016-enjoy.

Sweaty Yeti-Marty on Bear Den

Ice "Caves" of Wedges Creek

Sharp Shinned and Ex-Blue Jay

Dan's Berm-Fatbiking

BE in Popples

The River Folds Itself-Wedges Creek

Pewits Nest-Baraboo

I'd seen many stunning photographs of Pewits Nest over the years, and had driven nearby many times while heading to BAAP (The Ho-Chunk Nations Badger Army Ammunition Plant) for wildlife work.  Heading down in the dark one morning-I arrived at daybreak.  Chest waders would have been helpful, but I managed to crawl around and get a few images.  Although it's a beautiful place, too much "love" has eroded much of the natural shore and surrounding ground cover.  I found it surprising the state doesn't try to preserve this little sliver of land more.  I had it to myself this morning-much appreciated.

Miatke Farm at Daybreak

"That Tree"
I'd been just down the road from "That Tree" twice while at the Hirsch Farm for Gnomefest, but missed the chance to stop.  Last spring, traveling nearby, the truck veered off 151 and detoured south for a chance to see my friend Mark Hirsch's baby.  He does such great work and it had to be seen in person to really appreciate his project-taking an iphone image every day for a year (and it continues!)  This old girl was awe inspiring.

Simek's Pond

The Goose and Gander

Ravens and Bald Eagles-Dinner Time, Levis Mound

Meadow Lark-Buena Vista Grassland

Life, Death, Colour

Halls Creek Thaw- Dan Hiller

BE-Looking for Lunch

Spring Run-Kenosha (How does that horizon work?)

Levis Mound Chalet Fire

Red Cliff Reservation-Lake Superior
Not one of my photographs, but rather from good friend Mark Haferman, one of my kayak mentors.  I just had to include it here because of the great and frustrating memories of this anticipated trip to the Apostle Islands.  This was one of the great ones.

Mark and the Arctic Hawk- Red Cliff, Apostle Islands

Fairyland-Robinsons Creek

Big Blue Stem-Sturtz Prairie

Lake Eau Claire Shadow Moves

Lake Arbutus Revealed

Northfield Morning

The Mondeaux

Nosing Chequamegon Waters

Autumn Morning tugging at the Lake

Telemarken Road Aspen

Elk in My Woods

Merlin-Jeanne Reed's Farm

Not an exceptional photo, but to see a Merlin, for me anyway, is so rare that I had to include it.  He/she sat motionless while the truck crept closer and closer and luckily, I had the big zoom and camera along to get some images.

LaValle Wisconsin-Oak in Arms

Prepping for Winter-Beaver Pond, Columbia