Natural Highlights

When I was driving the loop road in Big Cypress National Preserve, I’d stop every half mile or so. Sometimes I’d see these Bromeliad Tillandsia blooming on the side of cypress trees. Daily Image I didn’t have the right equipment for taking flower photos, so I used a telephoto and zoomed in from the side of the road. This photo was taken with the zoom fully extended at 240mm. more landscape photography The main thing that catches my eye is the contrast of the flower against the green and earth tones of the preserve. I suppose I could have waded …

Myakka Floods

The flooding of Myakka River State Park is a normal this time of year. In my opinion, it’s one of the best times to visit and take photos. Most of the roads are just above the water so you can pull over and gaze out at the surreal landscape and reflections. Daily Image This is a photo of a scene I’m familiar with, but my past pictures didn’t convey it well. However, it seems that on this recent attempt I finally got it. The reflections create this mesmerizing spectacle alongside the road. It reminds me of Big Cypress National Preserve …

Myakka Symmetry

This image is another photo from Myakka River State Park and has some compositional no-nos in it. I’m not sure why, but I like it anyway. Maybe its the colors or the symmetry created from the reflections. Daily Image I take a lot of photos that never make it to the light of day. I do however review all of them in thumbnail form. There are very few winners; nevertheless, this caught my eye even though the tops of the palm trees are cut off. more images of nature from the gallery Sometimes the colors, shapes, and feeling of an …

Myakka Heron

I drove through our local state park the other day. Typical for this time of year, Myakka River State Park is flooded from recent rains and the rising of the river. I stopped at a submerged path next to the river and watched as Egrets, Limpkins, and Herons forage for food in the shallow water. Daily Image Also typical for this time of year is the oppressive sun and heat. But this section of the trail is covered in a thick canopy. The shade was a welcome reprieve and the scene was quiet and peaceful. more birds in the gallery …

Myakka Canopy Road

Here is a scenic section of road through Myakka State Park. It’s not too far from the campground, so it’s not uncommon to see cyclists and hikers. Daily Image Spanish moss hangs from the oaks all around this region. Where I live, we have oaks draped with it. Squirrels and bird use it for nests, and after a storm, enormous loads of it get blown to the ground. There are several roads like this in the vicinity. I think they’re called canopy roads. There is one just outside the park that I’ve taken photos of a couple of times. more …

Limpkin Kin

The other day I was at Myakka River State Park to try out some experimental gear. I didn’t have a plan other than to line up a few landscape shots. As I sat on a bench working with the apparatus, a mama and baby Limpkin strolled by. Daily Image They were eating snails and clams. The snails were easy enough to catch and eat. The clams they would batter with their beaks to break open the shells. I was no more than six feet away and what I found surprising was that, as long as I remained still, they tolerated …

Wisconsin Dells

On our summer road trip, we stopped to visit friends in Wisconsin. It turns out they live only a few minutes from Wisconsin Dells, or The Dells as its known colloquially. I never knew of such a place existed, but here it is. Despite the heat of summer, it was cool and dark in this mini canyon, so I balanced the camera on the wooden railing to get a longer exposure. Daily Image The Dells are sandstone gorge formed by glaciers. There are tributaries like this that run into the river. Below the boardwalk ran a cool creek that ended …

Pond Panorama

Here is an image from nearby Tom Bennett Park in Bradenton. I’ve been here twice this week trying to get some photos that do the landscape justice. To make this, I combined four vertical images, and each was a combination of two focus stacked images; so eight in all. Daily Image I’ve been doing a lot of focus stacking lately. If you’re not familiar, it’s taking two or more photos of the same thing, each focused at a different distance. Then by combining the in-focus parts of each image, everything is sharp. It’s an excellent technique to use when you …

Highway 240

Highway 240 loops through the Badlands National Park in South Dakota. I took this photo near the entrance to the park. The geological formations of The Badlands are amazing to look at, but in this frame, I was looking at the winding road ahead. The entire thirty-mile loop is scenic winding roads with turnouts every half mile or so. Daily Image If I had a motorcycle, this is where I’d ride. The road has everything, curves, hills, and of course scenery. When I came through here, it was a couple of weeks before Sturgis, and already groups of bikers were …

Ruby Falls

The last stop of our road trip was Chatanooga Tennessee. We passed it on the way up and made a note to stop here at Ruby Falls on the way back. Daily Image This 145-foot waterfall is inside a mountain and over 1000 feet below the surface. The caverns are limestone eroded by the water over millions of years. There is some info on the geology at Wikipedia. the gallery To get here, you take an elevator down into the mountain and walk half a mile through narrow caverns. If you’re not used to tight spaces, it can be a …