I wandered north on Saturday, December 22, to do some photography on the first full day of winter. Unlike my usual trips that begin long before dawn, this trip started at 10 a.m. I was at Point Betsie by 1:00 p.m. On such a gloomy day, it didn’t matter that I was shooting at mid day. There is still so much beauty on a cloudy day. And I found lots of it on the Platte River as it prepares to flow into Lake Michigan. But, my intention in starting out late was to shoot at dusk and after sunset to capture a photo of Art’s Tavern, festively lit for the holidays, and Fishtown in Leland, which is also sporting festive, though less garish, lights.
You may remember from my photos of the Point Betsie lighthouse last year how it gets consumed by ice. Well, winter is being very slow in coming and there is just a little bit of ice beginning to form. You have to start somewhere.
The Platte River
The Platte River flows into Lake Michigan at the south end of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. As it approaches the lake, it passes some low sand dunes. The ice forming on the grasses on the river’s edge intrigued me — like diamonds forming on the shore.
The reflection of the dunes in the slow moving river caught my eye.
Art’s Tavern, Glen Arbor, Michigan
It’s always worth the drive to Art’s Tavern. But Art’s gets bonus points this time of year for its festive decorations.
Fishtown, Leland, Michigan
In the latter part of the 1800s, Leland became a fishing town for white settlers on the Leelanau Peninsula. They joined native people who had fished Lake Michigan for hundreds of years. The shanties in Fishtown began to be constructed at the turn of the 20th century. The Janice Sue and the Joy are two fishing tugs that still conduct commercial fishing operations out of the Leland harbor.
I hiked the Wild Basin Trail in Rocky Mountain National Park on Friday. I hiked to the Calypso Cascades, a round trip hike of 3.6 miles with a 700 foot elevation gain.
Just three tenths of a mile from the trailhead, a hiker is rewarded with views of lower and upper Copeland Falls.
Hiking along North Saint Vrain Creek, the sound of rushing water accompanied me most of the way.
Another mile up the trail from the Copeland Falls, the Wild Basin Trail Crosses North Saint Vrain Creek.
The Calypso Cascades are another three tents of a mile up the mountain. The flow was down this time of year, but the falls are still a spectacular view.
Ouzel Falls are another nine tenths of a mile up the trail with additional gain of 250 feet. I had originally hoped to get to Ouzel, but daylight and my water supply were getting low. Perhaps another day.
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.)
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.
A couple of shots of the Tweedle Farm near Empire in the Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore.