New England Blogs

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Day 7 Vermont Fall 2021 NEK

 Day seven was the final day of the week long trip. I only went out shooting for a few hours in the morning and then packed up and headed back home to MA.

It was a foggy morning. :-) 




I went up into the highlands in Sutton as the fog was beginning to break:


We drove past this man walking his dog, and I just had to pull over to take this next photo, as the man and the dog were heading into the warm morning light as the fog was lifting.


The final photo taken in the NEK of Fall foliage 2021.


It was a fantastic week spent with photography friends......some who I haven't seen for five years. I enjoyed every minute of it and was sad to leave the beauty of the NEK. I did return for two daytrips to other areas of VT the next week, so stay tuned for future VT Fall blog posts. The next couple of blog posts will feature foliage photos from SE MA. 

Monday, October 25, 2021

Day 6 VT NEK Fall Peachem, Greenbanks Hollow Bridge etc

 Continuing on with the VT Fall photos......this is day six. The fog this particular morning was the thickest fog of the week. We got up and out early to go to Peacham, which is one of the quaintest and scenic little villages in Vermont. There are two vantage points that are high up on the hillsides looking down on the village that we wanted to photograph from. The problem was the thick fog. You could barely see ten feet in front of you. :-) Here are a few shots taken in Peacham that morning. Although they aren't the views we were planning on photographing, they were pretty nonetheless.

You can see the thick fog at the end of this tree tunnel.


This sugarhouse was out of the fog and luckily the sun was just breaking through.


We then decided to switch to plan B, as the fog was relentless in the upper elevations and where we were hoping to photograph. so we headed to Greenbanks Hollow covered bridge in Danville. Although this bridge is in a Hollow, there was still a significant amount of fog there.

My friends scrambled down below to the riverbank, but I stayed above and found some shots I was happy with. 


I shot this from standing beside the bridge looking down on one side.


And this was shot looking down from the other side of the bridge.


From here, we went to Barnet to photograph Bogie Mountain Farm. I figured it would be socked in with fog, and it was. We waited a while for the fog to lift and the sun to come through and when it did, I got this shot.


The fog was relentless on this particular morning. Typically on a clear day you get a fantastic view of the farm below with mountains in the distance. This was the best I could get on this day.


We decided to head back to Peacham to check out the fog situation there. The lowlands were beautiful but there was still thick fog in the highlands so we never were able to get the view from above that we were going for. There's always next time! You would never know by looking at this next photo I took that morning that there were still areas of thick fog nearby, That's the beauty of Fall in Vermont for you!

Peacham Village:


This was taken from Macks Mountain Road on our way out of Peacham.


This is New Hope Bible Church in Brownington VT . You can see the Willoughby Gap in the background. Mount Hor and Mount Pisgah flank Lake Willoughby and you can see the tops of both mountains in this image.


It was another glorious Fall day in the NEK of VT.

Friday, October 22, 2021

Milky Way Vermont Fall 2021

 We only had a few clear nights to do any Milky Way photography during the week long foliage trip. The first night a few of us went to shoot the Milky Way over a church in Newark VT. I processed these images two different ways.


This photo I included the light trails from a moped who drove by. I could hear him coming so timed my shot so that he would be driving past as the shutter was open.


We also photographed the Milky Way the following night from the back deck of the house. It was the easiest and most convenient night shoot I've ever done. We set our camera settings in the house, loaded our cameras on the tripod, shut off all of the interior lights, stepped out on to the deck, and took our shots. I thought we would need to light paint the foliage in the yard, but it lit up beautifully during the long exposure.



I've done some local shooting here in MA two days this week. I may post some of those photos on the next blog post, or I may just continue with Vermont Photos. Haven't decided yet. I hope you enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, October 21, 2021

Marshfield Pond, Noyes Pond and more Vermont Fall Foliage day 5

 Day 5 of the Vermont trip was the morning I **REALLY** wanted to have some fog. Our first stop of the day was to photograph Marshfield Pond (aka Turtleneck Pond) in Marshfield VT. I photographed at this location one Fall morning a few years ago and got some of my all time favorite VT shots that morning. I knew we needed to arrive here early. Well before sunrise, so we left the house around 5:30 AM. This pond doesn't have much space for photographers to get the good shots.  When we arrived on site, there were at least twenty plus photographers already lined up with their tripods in place. I may have made a mistake when I wrote in the e-book to arrive at this spot well before sunrise. :-) I know that at least one of the photographers there had the e-book because he recognized me and introduces himself. The e-book by the way is titled Photographing Vermont's Foliage: Where to Find  the Iconic Shots. Volume 2 written by me good friend and fellow photographer Andy Richards and myself. The e-book is available on Amazon.com.

Here are a few shots from this location. We got about 30 seconds of a pink sky and reflection in the water as the sun rose, and quickly after that the clouds took over.


I used the telephoto lens to zoom into the center of the above photo to get the details of the beautiful colors, fog, and reflections.


Our next stop of the morning was to photograph Noyes Pond in Groton. This is another of my favorite spots to photograph.
This first image I heard the geese honking in the distance and was happy to have my tripod set up in the right spot to catch them as they flew over the pond.


After about 25 minutes at this location the sky began to clear. Alleluia :-)





From here we made a stop to Ricker Pond, but the clouds came back. However, this was the last of the clouds for the day!



We headed back towards home after this and I actually stayed and took a nap. I was still recovering from pneumonia, and although I was feeling a lot better, I knew we were going to do a Milky Way shot that night and wanted to make sure I took care of myself. Shocking even to me that I would make such a decision during a foliage trip but it was for the best.

I had set my alarm and was in a sound sleep when it went off. It took me a few seconds to get my bearings as to where I was and what time of the day it was. I then headed out again to photograph one of my favorite sugarhouses in West Burk. The sun was shining and was lighting up the maples crazy good. In fact, on day one, we stopped by this location in the fog and it didn't interest my friends at all, but when my friend saw it with the sunshine he was quite pleased and finally understood my attraction to this location.




From here, we went back to Darling Hill Road in East Burke. If you remember in a previous blog post, we went here on a foggy morning. This time is was blue sky and sunshine.


From here, we went to the South end of Lake Willoughby


Our last stop of the daylight was to photograph a farm. I had contacted the farmer the week before, and asked permission to photograph there. He was very kind and welcoming and allowed me and my friends access to the entire property. Kindness matters and photographers should always be courteous and ask permission instead of just trespassing on people's property.




From here we met some other photographer friends for dinner at The Burke Publick House in East Burke and had a wonderful dinner. After dinner, three of us went to photograph the Milky Way. Those photos will be published in the next blog post so stay tuned.

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

 Day 4 of the VT NEK Fall foliage trip began the way every other day began. We had some thick morning fog. We again headed out around 7 AM, as once again we knew there weren't going to be any sunrise opportunities. This is sounding a bit like the movie "Groundhog Day", but we made the best with what we were handed from Mother Nature.

Our first stop of the day was along Darling Hill Road in East Burke. This road is a favorite of mine. Here is Burke Mountain, draped in fog.



Morning grazing along Darling Hill Road:


Along some of the backroads in the area:


The fog was finally beginning to lift but we had gray skies to deal with. Here's another dirt back road shot:


From here, we headed toward some back roads in East Burke and found some great barns to photograph. I once again kept the gray skies out of my shots if I possibly could.




We then headed back to the house to eat a quick lunch and made our way down to Stowe to meet up with a few other photographer friends of ours. It was so great to see them. We keep in touch year round but we always get together to go shooting for a day or two every Fall. We met them at 2 PM in Stowe and look what we saw..........


The blue sky! I kept this photo with 2/3's sky and 1/3 foreground to emphasize the sky.

The blue sky didn't last long. :-) Here's Grandview Farm in Stowe Hollow:


The last stop to photograph is this beautiful red barn sitting up in the highlands in Waterbury Center. I photographed here about 2-3 years ago around sunrise but figured out it would be best to shoot this in the late afternoon with the sun behind my back lighting up the barn and the mountain behind. We were "supposed" to have sunny skies this afternoon, but as you can see the forecast was a bit wrong. Sigh. I'll have to return here another time and hope the weather cooperates.


We then all went for a delicious dinner at The Reservoir Restaurant in Waterbury. It was a long day by the time we got back up to the NEK, but it was a fun day. 

Monday, October 18, 2021

VT Fall foliage 2021 Day 3 Bald Hill Pond Jobs Pond and others

 Day three started out pretty much the same as days 1 and 2. Clouds and fog, but at least there was no rain. Again, we knew from the forecast that we weren't going to get a sunrise shoot. We headed out around 7:00 AM. We wanted to go to Jobs Pond, which was rained out the day before. We decided to go back to Bald Hill Pond, which was pretty socked in with the fog the day before, because it was on the way. Day three had some morning fog, but it wasn't as thick as it was on day two. The colors were so good at this pond, it really did deserve a second look.




We then made our way to Jobs Pond. It's one of my favorites and I've photographed this pond every Fall for the last 20 plus years. The colors this year were as good as it gets here. 


This is one of my favorite shots from this trip:


From here, we headed to Pensioners Pond in West Charleston. The sky was beginning to brighten. It wasn't sunny, but the clouds had lifted and there was just a bit of fog remaining in the higher elevations.


Our next stop was in Westmore, near the North end of Lake Willoughby. We stopped to photograph a red barn, and was happy when I heard the tractor coming up the hill, because I knew it was going to add a little something to the barn shot. I just waited for the tractor to come up the hill and started shooting when it was in a pleasing location for the photograph. I briefly went over to say hi to the farmer when he got up to the top of the hill.


The barn as seen through an old wagon wheel.


I noticed the house on the distant hillside and decided to take a telephoto shot while I was just standing there. I love this house. I remember years ago it was for sale, and the real estate listing named the house "The Queen of Willoughby". (My artistic license.....I changed out the sky in this next shot. I was so sick of dealing with grey skies while processing the images that I needed a blue sky!)



From here we went to Jack Brook to do some waterfall shots. I basically just shot from the side of the road due to mobility issues with my foot and ankle, but my friends got some beautiful shots from down in the water bed. I mostly just socialized. :-) I did get this shot from the road that I'm happy with.


That's about it for day three. It was a good day.