On a Cloudy Day, Go Close

Yesterday was a gray winter’s day. Early in the day, I set out to shoot some landscape photos. The trees were flocked with a new coat of snow, but the light was so diffuse that the photos all looked flat and dull. So I shifted gears and decided to look more closely at the landscapes and find mini-landscapes in the details. I headed to one of my favorite spots, Honey Creek, for these shots. (Click on images to see them larger.)

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Point Betsie and beyond

I drove up to the Leelanau Peninsula early yesterday morning and stopped at the Point Betsie Lighthouse along the way.  The lighthouse was constructed in 1858.  In the winter it becomes a magical place of ice and light.  Point Betsie Lighthouse -7882aPoint Betsie Lighthouse -7851aPoint Betsie Lighthouse -7844aPoint Betsie Lighthouse -7841aPoint Beetsie Lighthouse- 7866aPoint Betsie Lighthouse-7897

A couple of shots of the Tweedle Farm near Empire in the Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore.

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The Empire Lighthouse

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Shalda Creek where it passes under Bohemian Road.

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The Crystal River at the first portgage.

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Fall’s Approach

The fall colors have generally yet to come to our area in West Michigan.  We are in the midst of a mini-drought (the third driest September since 1892).  We are seeing a lot of leaves simply dry up and fall off the trees with revealing their spectacular colors.

Still there are signs of fall.  The morning air has turned much cooler with lows dipping into the low forties and high thirties. This causes fog to form in low lying fields and especially around bodies of water, which still retain some of the warmth from our 80 and 90 degree temperatures from just a couple of weeks ago.

Yesterday morning, in my wanderings, I drove across the Grand River in Ada and saw the mist rising from the water.  I turned around and found a boat launch where I could park and explore the waters edge.  Here are some photos.

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From the shores of the Grand it was just a short trip to Seidman Park and Honey Creek.  I brought along my waders so I could get down into the creek and get closer to the rocks.

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Once More to the North

Once more to the north to shoot photos. Since the sun rises earlier each day, I had to get up even earlier to make the three hour drive and get to my shooting location before sunrise. Up at 3:00 a.m. and out the door by 3:15.

I started shooting on Good Harbor Bay, where Shalda Creek enters Lake Michigan. I had to share the area with a beaver, who was none too happy with my presence. I enjoyed shooting in “blue hour” before sunrise . . .

and the “golden hour” immediately after sunrise.

All that was missing, besides a good cup of coffee, was some clouds to make the sky more interesting.

From there, I headed back towards Glen Arbor, stopping at the Olsen Farm and along Thorosen Road to take a shot I envisioned a couple of weeks ago, when I was scouting the territory.

I next put on my waders and set up my tripod in the middle of the Crystal River, a meandering river that winds back and forth for seven miles from its origin on Fisher Lake to where it enters Lake Michigan.

The final stop was the Empire Bluff Trail, which offered a spectacular view of Sleeping Bear Dune.

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Sleeping Bear Photo Shoot

Up at what my friend Mel calls “O dark early,” to travel to the Leelanau Peninsula to take some photos.  I wanted to be there before sunrise, which was about 7:15 a.m. So, I was up at 3:40 a.m. and out the door by 4:00 a.m. It was 3 degrees when I set up my tripod in a field overlooking Glen Lake.  I was rewarded with this photo. Not a bad start to the day.glen-lake-6151

From there, I headed to Glen Haven to walk along the shore of Sleeping Bear Bay to the point.  But first, I stopped to take a couple of photos along D.H. Day Farm Road.

Photos from along Sleeping Bear Bay:

Next to Shalda Creek where it flows into Good Harbor Bay.

Along M-72, on my way to Traverse City, I spotted these fruit trees and had to stop.

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Up before Dawn

Up early today, as usual.  I went down to the Grand River to catch some photos as the sun came up. The Sixth Street Bridge, seen in these photos, was erected in 1886 and is the longest and oldest metal truss bridge in Michigan. I have added a bonus, after -dawn, photo of the Sparrow Coffee Shop on Wealthy.img_6058img_6057img_6053img_6070