We looking down the barrel of another significant snow storm this weekend. Even though winter doesn’t arrive (officially) until next weekend, this is already shaping up to be a snowy season – at least compared to the past couple years. For those among us who dislike the thought of another cold winter season, I’ve included my cellphone photo of sunflowers growing in the warm summer sun!
If you don’t mind the cold so much, winter provides other opportunities for plant photography that are just as beautiful as summer’s sunflowers. I photographed this ice-encrusted plant at Whitesbog a couple winters ago. The day was so cold I could hardly remove my glove to press the shutter button before my fingers would start to feel numb. But it was still a great day to be outdoors.
For birders, winter can bring opportunities that don’t exist at other times of the year. This is a Red Crossbill I photographed a couple years ago at Seven Presidents Park in Monmouth County, New Jersey. These small finches spend their summers north of the Arctic Circle and, some years, make their way to the Shore for the winter.
And here’s a winter scene you may have never witnessed. My wife photographed this group of Amish men clearing snow from an eastern Pennsylvania road a few years ago. Low tech but effective!
Stay safe this weekend and, if you get the chance, go outside and enjoy the winter weather! You never know what might turn up!
Another Nor’easter has passed over New Jersey, leaving us buried in a foot or more of new snow. This one was warmer than our earlier storms and delivered considerable amounts of freezing rain and sleet before turning to snow. This was the view from my deck as the early morning sunlight illuminated ice-covered trees.
This was the view I enjoyed through my car’s windshield this morning, for nearly two hours. This long predicted storm fooled forecasters at all major weather services here in New Jersey and dumped about 4 inches of snow in about an hour, snarling traffic and causing numerous accidents. I took this photo with my cellphone, about a block from my office, while sitting completed stopped in traffic once again.
A light snow is falling softly today, quite the contrast to the howling blizzard we endured Christmas weekend. The air has a damp, cold touch that encourages you to stay indoors, wrapped in a blanket, enjoying a good book.
I opted for The Wild Vine. A friend introduced this book at his Christmas party, which was as much wine-tasting as holiday gathering. An evening of good friends, good food, good wine – exactly what the holidays should be all about, by my estimation. I picked up a copy of the book shortly after his party and started reading it today. According to the inside jacket, this is “a rich romp through untold American history” and promises to be “the tale of a little-known American grape that rocked the fine-wine world of the nineteenth century and is poised to do so again”. So far, so good.
The book is a story of Norton, a grape native to America that some say is the only one to produce drinkable wine. All the rage during the late nineteenth century, winning gold medals at wine-tasting events in Europe, Norton was forgotten and nearly disappeared completely. A few vineyards are beginning to grow Norton again, primarily in Virginia and Missouri. I was lucky enough to sample a glass, thanks to my good friend’s efforts, and am now planning my own wine-tasting excursion to Virginia.
And so I took a photo, with my cellphone, to share my snowy Saturday afternoon with you. The photo, taken with an Android X, has only minimal processing. The wine, alas, is not Norton! I hope you are enjoying your Saturday afternoon as much as I am mine!
Here’s the scene, looking down my street, I was greeted to yesterday morning at around 7 A.M. The first nor’easter of Winter (and hopefully the last) brought over two feet of snow to my part of New Jersey. Because I live so near the ocean (only about 10 miles as the crow flies) this storm was very intense as it passed by, with 50 mph winds, bizzard white-out conditions, and about 14 hours of snow. Some parts of the state were reporting 80 mph wind gusts, so this was essentially a snow hurricane. During a news conference yesterday afternoon, New York City’s mayor said this was the 5th worst storm in the city’s history. I can believe it. We had 5 foot high drifts and the wind was still blowing hard most of the day. We share a driveway with our neighbors and it took us almost 5 hours to shovel out the cars. Last year we had three storms, all of them nearly this large, within a two week period. Here’s hoping that we don’t get a repeat this season!!
My 2009 closed out with a big snow storm and more than a few unfinished projects. My attempts at completing the 365 Photos in 2009 came up well short of the 365 photos I should have posted. Still, I had fun and learned a few things along the way. I visited the web sites of photographers from all over the world, enjoyed viewing their photos (even if I didn’t comment each time!) and learned a little about places that I may never have a chance to visit in person.
I’ve decided to throw my virtual hat into the ring again and will participate in the 2010 Virtual PhotoWalk. I’m looking forward to re-establishing my photography routines (which sadly have taken a back seat to so many other projects) and the links with the photographers who make the 2009 challenge so much fun!
Oh yeah.. the photo…this is my deck after the nor’easter of December 2009 that struck the eastern U.S. seaboard. My part of New Jersey got about 2 feet of snow during the storm, one of the biggest snowfalls that I can recall since moving here 25 years ago!
Seems like we get the heaviest snow storms during March, when the Nor’easters blow up the Atlantic seaboard full of moister from the gulf coast. The snow was still falling when I took this photo of my deck Monday morning (March 2nd). I didn’t get the official measurements but, judging from the amount I shoveled, I’d say we got about a foot os snow.