Autumn…Rain muted

A day truly does make a difference. Here in northeast Ohio we have been blessed with a succession of delightful days that drew this nature-loving photographer outdoors to walk the trails, ignoring anything indoors that may be calling for my attention. Dusting, vacuuming, reading, and more have received scant attention during these glorious autumn days as I answered the clarion call to “Come outdoors and enjoy autumn at its finest.” However, today was different! I woke very early to the sound of wind and rain, which hasn’t abated over the last 14 hours. It was the beginning of a very different day!

Despite the inclement weather, I pulled my winter jacket and hat out of the closet and headed to Chagrin River Park late this afternoon to see what effect the sudden changes would have on my October images.  I didn’t get far before the rain began to fall with enough force to send me indoors, but here are three images from today’s short trail walk . Although they are muted by the wind and falling rain, I’m happy to include them in my “Color Me Autumn” collection.

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So there you have it, fellow trail walkers. Muted rather than vibrant, they are still beautiful, wouldn’t you say?

Thanks for joining me on the trail today.
Trail Walker

Covered bridge tour (part two)

A Color Me Autumn blog post

From my point of view, little could be better on a gorgeous Fall day than a tour of Ashtabula County, highlighting several iconic covered bridges. In my previous post, I mentioned the tour I took this week with my friend Lorna who lives in this far northeastern Ohio county, bordered on the east by Pennsylvania and the north by Lake Erie. When I came home at the end of that day, I had neither the time nor the energy to review my entire set of pictures and decide which ones to post, so I promised to do it “tomorrow.” Although it’s actually been two days since the covered bridge tour, and I’m a day late, here are the covered bridge photos I promised, along with classic “Color Me Autumn” scenery from northeast  Ohio.

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After breakfast at a friendly family-style restaurant in Geneva, I dropped my car off at Lorna’s house, and she drove us to nearby Doyle Road bridge. My goal for the day was to photograph some different covered bridges and their surroundings. The first bridge was the Doyle Road bridge. Walking through the bridge, I took a picture looking out the window at the creek and then took more pictures of the creek.

The Netcher Road bridge was next on the tour, followed by the bridge on Mechanicsville Road with irresistible autumn scenery along the way.

The last bridge on our tour was the Harpersfield bridge, which I have photographed quite a few times in the past. Today Lorna found a boat ramp we could walk down, so we took our first pictures from beside the river.

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Harpersfield bridge
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Walking beside the river
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Framing the bridge
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Bridge from the driver’s point of view
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Fisherman approaching the covered bridge

The Harpersfield covered bridge was built in 1868 to span the Grand River, designated a wild and scenic river by the state of Ohio. In 1913 the northern approach to the bridge was washed away in a bad flood. After the flood, they built a 140 foot steel truss section that completed the span. The largest covered bridge in Ohio, it is on the National Register of Historic Places.

At this point we had reached the last bridge on our tour, and it was long past lunch time. As well as being on the map for its many covered bridges, Ashtabula County is a wine-growing region. Many wineries dot the roads throughout the county, but few are open on Monday. We pulled into one that was open, and when we discovered they don’t serve lunch on Monday and Tuesday, we settled for relaxing with a glass of wine on their patio with a view of the vineyards.

This would have been a great way to end our bridge tour, but we had one more stop planned, so we left Ashtabula County and drove to Lake Erie Bluffs, a place I have blogged about in the past, but that Lorna had never visited. The tower is a great place to view Lake Erie and enjoy the Autumn colors.

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Fifty foot observation tower at Lake Erie Bluffs
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View from the top of the tower

Now we had finally reached the end of our tour…a fun way to spend an Autumn day. Thanks for joining us. I hope you had a good time too.

See you again soon for another “Color Me Autumn” blog post.
Trail Walker

Autumn in the Arboretum

“Color Me Autumn”

Autumn is my favorite season and October is my favorite month. Throughout this season, most of my blog posts, as well as my daily posts in my Blipfoto journal, will focus on variations of “Color Me Autumn.”

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The golden willow tree

When I visit the Arboretum, I almost always pass by the Golden Willow next to Lotus Pond, even if only for a brief pause to say hello and take a picture or three. It is such a graceful tree, and I have noticed that many people are drawn to the bench under its weeping branches. Today was no exception.

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When the bench beneath the willow was empty, I walked down the trail and stood near it. Looking across the pond, I could see some children playing in the tree house. It’s a fantastic tree house and very strong. I know that for a fact because when I passed the tree house a few days later  I watched two adults climb up to check out the view (Unfortunately I wasn’t fast enough to get their picture).

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Who can resist a tree house?
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A close look at the tree house

After passing the tree house, I continued along the trail  around Lotus Pond pausing once more to capture a picture of this flower.

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That wasn’t quite the end of the trail walk. Here are a few more pictures I snapped along the trail before it was time to go home for lunch:

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Looking at the frogs on the log in the bog. Can you see them?
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The bog is a great place to take pictures.
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This gingko tree will feature in future posts.

Just past the gingko tree the trail passes the lily pond and curves around a sugar maple, and at that point I left the trail and headed for my car. It was time for lunch. Sorry to say I didn’t pack my lunch today, so it’s time to go home. I’ll be back soon with more pictures of Autumn in the Arboretum.

I hope you can join me again for another walk along the trail.
See you soon!
Trail Walker

Color me Autumn

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Sitting in front of my computer screen looking at photos of fall scenes posted on several other blogs propelled me out of my chair and out on the trail with my camera. The weather couldn’t have been better for a walk in the park, so here are a few pictures from my very short walk. Take a look at that sky! Maybe it’s just me, but I think it is amazing.

If you have checked out my recent blog posts, the river and pedestrian bridge are probably beginning to look very familiar. Ever since 2002, when they constructed the bridge to make both sides of the river accessible to walkers, it has been a magnet for me. It’s a photogenic bridge in a lovely setting. What more could I look for when I am carrying my camera?

Thanks for stopping by today. See you soon.
Trail Walker

Saturday stroll in the park

Saturday chores finished, it was time to take a little break, so Bob snapped the leash on Gulliver and we all went to the park to see what was happening along the river.

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Except for several wedding parties taking pictures, there wasn’t much going on, but, with or without much action, it was a beautiful day for a walk. We wandered down the north side of the river. As we turned around and headed back toward the northwest, I took this picture of the pedestrian bridge.

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Bob wanted me to take a few pictures of the wedding parties, but I said, “Let’s cross the bridge first,” so that’s what we did, and I snapped these pictures from the middle of the bridge.

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Looking south from the pedestrian bridge…
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The sun was behind me.
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Facing northwest, into the glare from the sun.

From the opposite side of the bridge, looking toward Lake Erie, which is only about a mile away, I took the picture above (realizing later that I needed a filter on my camera to cut the glare)! On the east side of the bridge, we followed the trail a short way until we reached the overlook where Bob and Gulliver decided to relax while I took the picture at the top of this page. Then I turned the camera on “the boys” and captured a picture of them that I really like because it looks so natural.

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As you can see from the pictures, the shadows were beginning to lengthen, and it was time to retrace our steps and head for home. Back on the pedestrian bridge, we encountered another wedding party. Hopefully their photographer had a professional camera with a fast lens, as the light was beginning to fade. I’m not sure where he (or she) and the bride and groom were at this moment, but the family members, other guests, and the attendants were enjoying a little digital diversion. I wouldn’t be surprised if those pictures were passed around at the reception for everyone’s entertainment. I didn’t want to miss the opportunity, so I stood above them on the bridge and grabbed a few shots. It was hard to resist, so I hope they don’t mind. If they ever come across these two pictures, I will be happy to send them copies. The bride’s attendants looked lovely, and I’m guessing the fellows had a grand time at the reception.

I never know what I’m going to see when I pick up my camera and head out for a trail walk. That’s what makes this hobby so much fun!

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That’s the end of this walk along the trail.
Thanks for joining me!
Trail Walker

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