Seen Along the Trail

Photos taken on my daily walks

Posts from the ‘Holden Arboretum’ category

On Holden Pond

Holden Arboretum

I visited Holden Arboretum this morning. To the dismay of the Canada geese flying overhead, there was no water for them to land in. They were complaining with loud honks of consternation as they searched for some open water. Some eventually tried ice skating (goose style), but they obviously weren’t happy about it. The next few pictures tell the story.

Looking for a place to land that isn't frozen over.

All the ponds and lakes were frozen over. The geese were honking anxiously as they flew over frozen pond after frozen pond and couldn't find a place to land.

...on Blueberry Pond at Holden Arboretum

...searching for some open water.

It wasn’t easy walking for humans either. At one point I stepped on a patch of ice and almost crashed in a heap! The geese are a lot more graceful than I am!

Thanks for stopping by my corner of Ohio today.
Come back in a few days to see if winter has lost its grip.

Skip aka Carolyn

A visit to the dentist aka arboretum

When I set off this morning, my destination was the dentist’s office for my semi-annual checkup; however, as my dentist’s office is over halfway to the arboretum, I thought to myself, “Why not?” As in why not go to the arboretum after the teeth-cleaning routine is over and done? So that is what I did, and, HOORAY!, the cloud-cover dispersed, turning an overcast morning into a beautiful day.

My first stop was the butterfly garden, just in case a few monarchs or other species had postponed their migration. Unfortunately, there were no butterflies, but I still enjoyed a delightful bimble through the garden. I ended my visit with a stop at Lotus Pond where a frog favored me with a photo opp, an unusual occurrence, because frogs usually plop into the pond before I can press the shutter button. This frog sat still as a statue, almost as if he wanted to have his portrait taken, while I tiptoed around him, searching for the best angle to snap his picture.

Most of the pictures I took today were flowers. With autumn advancing faster than I want it to, there will soon be no flowers left to photograph. I’m thinking I will soon have to plan a trip to the Cleveland Botanical Garden. Meanwhile, I’ll make the most of the autumn’s beautiful colors, one of the very best reasons for living in northeast Ohio.

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Carolyn aka Skip

Searching for my photo mojo

Much has happened to interfere with my photoblogging over recent months. The illness of my sister (and friend) Marjorie for one thing. I just returned earlier this week from her memorial service in Florida. It has been an unusual summer with much to distract me from my photo walks. I did capture a few pictures while I was in Florida, and if I can find time to download them, they will be included in a future blog. But here and now, back home in Ohio, the seasons are changing. Fall, my favorite season, photographically speaking, is knocking at the door, and I’m hoping it will provide lots of photographic fodder in the weeks ahead. My photo mojo needs a boost!

This morning I visited the Arboretum, one of my favorite photo haunts. It was my first visit in many weeks, and I was hoping to capture some butterflies before they take off on their annual migration to warmer climates. I saw one! That’s it, just one butterfly, and I didn’t even get a very good picture of it. However, I did spend a pleasant hour in the butterfly garden and made it home before the rain began to fall. Click on any picture below to bring up the gallery and enjoy a short walk through the garden, complete with bees, butterfly, flowers, and a group of girls on a school field trip.

See you again soon.
Skip aka Carolyn

Bloom, Bloom, Bloom!

Walking along the edge of Corning Lake this afternoon,  I paused when these faded blossoms caught my eye…


They are clearly past their prime. Their colors have faded, and they no longer possess the vibrant blossoms and upright stems that would have drawn my attention a month or two ago, but they have aged gracefully, and they now possess a new kind of beauty, the beauty that drew my attention today.

I know an older woman, well into her ninth decade, of whom we could say the same. She’s not as vibrant today as she was when I first met her 30 years ago, and she doesn’t stand as tall, but she has undeniably grown more beautiful day-by-day-by-day.

Maybe that is something we should all aspire to as the years roll by. Let’s not give in to the ravages of time! Let’s age gracefully! Paste a smile on our faces, stand up as straight as we possibly can, and bloom, bloom, bloom.

Here’s some more of the beauty that was “blooming” in my corner of Ohio today:

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Thanks for visiting. I hope you will join me for another photowalk soon.

An hour well spent


Squeezed between lunch with a good friend and some necessary household chores, I found an hour to walk in the Holden Arboretum. Hat and glove weather has arrived, but it is still wonderful to spend time outside. Take a look at these pictures, and you will agree that winter is almost upon us, even if the calendar claims it is still a month away. In my opinion, the calendar is a very unreliable judge of the seasons. Winter weather always arrives way ahead of the December date that marks it on the calendar, and spring never arrives when the calendar says it will. Here in northeast Ohio, spring is reliably late. Every April, when the wet, grey weather persists well past the time I am ready for sunshine and warmth, I play with the idea of moving to a warmer climate, but, to be truthful, I love the contrast of our four seasons. Each one has a beauty of its own. Here is some more beauty I enjoyed in the Arboretum today.

(Click on any picture to bring up the carousel with larger images.)


Thanks for visiting my corner of Ohio today, I hope you enjoyed the scenery.

It’s not a rainy day…

just a very cloudy one. It’s not even very cold (48 degrees), considering this is mid-November and we are in northeast Ohio. If I weren’t a nature photographer, determined to get outside with my camera every day, I would stay inside today, curled up on the sofa with a cup of cocoa and a good book. I am retired after all, so I don’t have to go anywhere.

That’s what runs through my mind on a grey day like today; then I remember that I have challenged myself to become a better photographer, and I remember other grey and even rainy days, and how much better the world looked once I went outside, instead of hanging around inside looking out. So I grab my camera and my jacket, and off I go to the Arboretum. Come along and see the sights. I would enjoy your company.

First stop: Visitor’s Center and picnic shelter-I wandered from the Visitor’s Center through the picnic area, taking a few pictures along the way:


Then I took the staircase, leading into the valley, where I snapped a few more pictures before heading back up the hill to Blueberry Pond, where some Canada Geese were enjoying a family swim on the still waters.





Detouring through the wildflower garden, I headed toward Lotus Pond. Although there aren’t any wildflowers blooming during this time of year, it is a peaceful place with interesting sights to see. I especially like the boulders that frame the exit from the garden. In warmer weather, there are always chipmunks scampering over the rocks, but not today. They must be hibernating by this time.


Since I only have time for a short walk today, it is time to head around Lotus Pond and back to the parking lot…stopping for a few photo opps along the way.



So there you have it: my photo walk for Wednesday. Despite the lack of sunshine, I enjoyed the trek and capturing my “daily dozen” photo opps wasn’t a problem. Thanks for visiting my corner of Ohio today. I hope you will join me again soon.

Cleveland zoo-Summer 2013

A goal achieved

The wind is whooshing and whistling through the trees in our backyard tonight. It makes me a little nervous because the trees are so tall, but it makes Gulliver, our springer spaniel, more than a little nervous! He usually sleeps downstairs in his special corner, but right now, he is snoozing on my bed. This change of weather arrived earlier today with rain showers and a light breeze, and it has gone downhill since then.

After breakfast I drove out to the Holden Arboretum for a hike, but didn’t get far down the trail before I heard the pitter-patter of raindrops in the trees overhead. Nor did I get many pictures. When the raindrops began to accumulate on my Nikon, I decided it was time to retreat to my car and head for home. However, I did achieve one goal. I had set out to capture my first picture of a black squirrel, and I succeeded.

According to Wikipedia, the city of Kent (Ohio), which is about 40 miles south of us,

…developed a significant black squirrel population after 10 were legally imported from Canada in February 1961 by biologist Ralph W. Dexter to study whether they would upset the ecosystem on Northeast Ohio.

We don’t have them in our neighborhood, but since it has taken those squirrels 50 years or so to migrate 30 miles from Kent to the Holden Arboretum, I’m guessing we have another five years or more before they are climbing those tall trees in our backyard. The photograph I took today isn’t great. The rain and dull light didn’t make good conditions for photography, nor was the squirrel cooperative. I’ll try for a better picture another day, but here’s the one I snapped this morning…

Black squirrel

The only other picture I have to share today is this downy woodpecker…

Downy woodpecker


I was hanging around the feeding station with the chickadees, woodpeckers, and one little chipmunk because that’s where I spotted the black squirrel. When this downy flew over to the feeder, I was amused by his inquisitive expression. I imagined him saying, “Time to fill this feeder, guys. It’s getting kind of low on my favorite sunflower seeds” Later, looking at his picture on my computer screen, I was impressed by those claws and how adept he was at using them to get a grip on the feeder. He looks like he means business. I’m thinking the person in charge of filling the feeders better get on the ball.

It’s getting late, so that’s it for now. Thanks for visiting my corner of Ohio today, and thanks to everyone who visited yesterday, clicked on the “like” button or left a comment. A special welcome to my new subscribers. I was amazed and delighted to discover that I had been “Freshly Pressed.”

Take a hike!

Pack up the camera, put a leash on the dog, pick up the grandchildren and head to the Holden Arboretum for a hike. That’s what we did on this gorgeous Sunday afternoon. Once we reached the arboretum, we took the trail that leads, via the Molly Offutt Memorial Boardwalk, into the Pierson Creek valley. It would be a beautiful trail to follow at any time of year, but the fall colors made it special today.

Head of the trail


My companions on the hike


I didn’t count the stairs we descended to reach the valley floor; there were a lot, but the scenery made every step worthwhile.

Down in the valley


A carpet of fallen leaves


Reminder to be a responsible hiker


All the comforts of home!


At one point, the boardwalk projected over Pierson Creek and provided a great view upstream where a fallen tree trunk became an irresistible temptation for intrepid hikers…although not the one with the camera nor the one with the dog.

The "bridge"

One hiker braves the bridge!


The second hiker steps out.


We made it!


Time to head home! That means clambering up the stairs and heading back down the trail to the parking lot.

A long way up


The hike is over for this time, but it was great fun, something to store in the memory bank for future withdrawals. If you ever chance to be in northeast Ohio, look up the Holden Arboretum. It’s worth a visit.