Clouds

There are songs and sayings and poems written about clouds.  I originally searched for a witty saying but there were to many to choose from. But all in all I discovered “I really don’t know clouds at all.”

Clouds are mesmerizing.  They are wispy, fluffy, dark, mean and pretty.

Depending of course on the type of cloud they can be pretty.  I’m not much of a fan of dark windy tornado looking clouds.  I’ve seen a few and it was never fun.

I have my favorite clouds.  Flat bottom clouds.  (I heard you singing Fat Bottom Girls by Queen, don’t deny it.)

Not just any flat bottom clouds.  But my clouds from Eastern Montana.  Those are my favorite for two reasons, I’m home or I’m seeing a picture from being home.

Flat Bottom Clouds Montana                                     Eastern Montana clouds and the Yellowstone River

 

Flat Bottom Clouds Oregon                                  Southern Oregon clouds and the Klamath Basin Refuge

Here in Oregon, you know, the southern pacific northwest where we live, the clouds do resemble my Montana clouds.  Of course, it always makes me homesick.

There are a lot of memories in those Montana clouds.  One of my first blue ribbons at the fair was of a cloud and the sun after a good rain storm in Eastern Montana.

Last time when we were in Montana it was a beautiful day, the sky was blue and the clouds were gathering.  I remember hubby and I driving around taking pictures of my home town and the clouds.

One other vacation we were in Rawlins Wyoming touring the Frontier prison.  (It’s haunted)  we were in the courtyard and the clouds were so close and so big.  They were popping all over!  http://www.wyomingfrontierprison.org/

Rawlins Wyoming                                                                Rawlins Wyoming

I like rain clouds too.  Watching the rain stream out of a cloud, wishing it was over us instead of farther away.  When we were living in the desert of Southern California, it seemed the storms would almost always go around us.

Rosamond Rain                                     Rain just out of our reach in Rosamond California

One year, on the 4th of July the clouds were building up in the east of where we lived.  Our grandson and I kept watching the storm build as it moved closer to where we were. Those were some dark clouds.  Of course, the husband was certain that storm would never get to us because we never get storms from the east.

Rosamond Storm from East                                                 Something Wicked This Way Comes

Okay, you may be right husband, but guess what, that little storm was actually a tornado. I was shooting the clouds as they were forming over the house and after the storm passed and we had no power, I was looking at the pictures from our hotel room.  Low and behold, one of the pictures was of a funnel cloud.  It was indeed an adventure.

Rosamond Funnel Cloud                                                                             Uh Oh…

The grandson, the husband and I were muddy messes, because like any other storm loving crazy people we just had to be outside while the storm blew through our back yard.  Little did we know at the time of the storm, power poles down the street snapped in half. We had no water to clean up before going to the hotel. I bet the staff was frightened when we walked in.  We stayed in the hotel two nights.

So, not all clouds and storms are bad.  We did have some pretty great cloud and sunset opportunities in the desert.

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA                                                Rosamond California Desert Sunset

But, I will always prefer the mountain clouds and sky scenes over the desert sky scenes.

Mountain Sunrise                                              Mountain Sunrise over Keno Oregon

Yet, the flat bottomed clouds are still my favorite.

You can be creative with clouds.  If you have the right programs on your computer, you can use clouds as fog, or add them to a picture that just seems to be missing something.

WIndmill no clouds                                                                    Before

WIndmill with clouds                                                                  After            Vya Nevada

The after picture was also turned into a water color using a Topaz Labs adjustment filter.

Grab your camera, or use your phone and go out and find some clouds to capture!  Try some different filters on your phone to make the clouds more dramatic.  Everyone has their favorite photo-apps!

Try some black and white filters to give them a different feel!

Wyoming Somewhere                                                       Somewhere in Wyoming

I guess the key is to Go Outside!  Enjoy your surroundings. Find new areas!    I love to be outside.  I would rather be outside than inside, unless of course it’s the middle of winter, or it might be blazing hot out.  But I also like to be inside when updating the blog!

Monument Valley Clouds                                                Monument Valley with a few clouds

This summer go outside and capture some great weather scenes!

Enjoy nature, enjoy the nice weather and enjoy life!

Be Safe

Happy Shooting

T Lynn

 

Spring Green

Green

Spring Green

I am almost afraid to say it out loud.  But I can see it everywhere!  The leaves are on the trees, the blossoms are on the trees, the bees are buzzing around the blossoms on the trees. I think it might be spring!

Spring Leaves

However, looking ahead to the weather report, I fear we will have one week of spring, and go straight into summer.  Lovely wonderful summer heat that no one is ready for.

Just last week we were still running our pellet stove.  Hubby and I were commenting on the fact that we only had 3 bags of pellets left and we needed a couple more.  Winter just did not want to give up!  I might add that in the western part of my home state of Montana, in the beautiful Bitterroot Valley, they just had close to a foot of snow a few days ago, mid May.   Also last weekend, we had a dusting of snow on our back deck.   This is why I am afraid to think of spring.

Driving along our favorite State Line road with our favorite trees, I captured some trees, with leaves.  It rarely happens.  These trees are more  dramatic with out the leaves.  But I still like them… a lot!

Tree along stateline 1

On the way to where I work, I pass wonderful trees.  I had noticed something in one of these trees for about two weeks and finally told the hubby we should drive to the trees and see what was in it.  I knew there were nests close in other trees but I was surprised to see what was there!

GH Owl Fledling and Parent

My favorite of all owls and an owlet.  I love the word owlet, I had to look it up to see if it was even proper.

There were 3 owls in the tree when we pulled up.  I got out of the truck and one flew away.  I am thinking dad wanted to watch for any shenanigans from the next tree.  No worries dad, I am not going to hurt your precious owlet and the mother of your child! Nope, that’s not how I shoot!  I respect all signs.  And owls.

Adult Great Horned Owl

Besides, I really don’t want you or mama to come after me, I have seen your talons!

It was a challenge to shoot between the branches and leaves, but I was quite satisfied with the results.  And trust me, I had a lot of pictures of leaves!

How many people drive by these trees daily and haven’t even noticed? How sad for them.  They are missing out on nature at its finest time.

I think the Good Lord above has a favorite color, and it is indeed Green.  It might be blue, there are some awesome shades of blues in the mountains.

Have you ever driven through farm country or even a mountain canyon and noticed how many different shades of green there are?  Way to many to count!  I sometimes wish I could take my color picker out of photoshop and sample them all and have every color of green!  Is it even possible?

Spring Morning

Weeds are green, and there are plenty of those.  The alfalfa fields are growing green, and in the morning with the sun coming up and the sprinklers misting, it makes for an awesome relaxing sight to see so early.  It’s serenity at its finest.

Sprinklers in Spring

Don’t close your eyes to spring green! There is so much to see!  All different shades!

Before you know it, the browns of summer will be upon us and you’ll have missed the glory of spring.   Because after brown comes the beautiful fall colors and then it turns white and I refuse to think about that for another 6 months!

Cows in Spring

Take a drive this weekend, in the early morning, in the afternoon, anytime your heart desires.   Get out of the house!  Go see things!

You won’t be sorry, well, unless you have allergies.  Don’t forget your allergy pill!

Mt Shasta Spring

Happy Shooting

T Lynn

Goslings

Following Along

A couple of weeks ago the husband and I started seeing the goslings on the refuge.  It’s almost as fun as photographing the eagles when they started migrating in.

Follow us Kids

The tiny little yellow “fluff balls” are just so stinking cute!Mom Dad and Kids!

We went out to the refuge this past weekend in search of more cute adorable  fluffy goslings.  Boy were we in for a surprise!  They grow fast!  It is amazing to see what a difference a week has made.  No, I do not know if they were the same goslings as the week before, but we can sure see the difference!

The Goslings are getting bigger

3 Older Goslings

One thing we have noticed and learned is they have very protective parents.  The geese were across the canal from us, so we weren’t causing any real harm, other than disturbing their day and perhaps the swimming lesson and other lessons.

Mom and Dad put their heads and bodies down very flat and they remain very still.

Protective Parents

Older Goslings and Protective Parent

As with any youngster, the babies weren’t as still as they probably should have been. I am sure they have a short attention span as do most little ones.

Protective Mama

This mama, kind of resembles a snake that I would not want to mess with!

A couple facts about the newly hatched balls of fluff.

The newly hatched babies are able to swim immediately.  After the babies have hatched, the family moves away from the nesting site on foot toward more favorable feeding areas.  Five weeks after the goslings hatch, the females begin moulting (the males begin right after mating).  During this time, the adults are unable to fly.  The adults regrow their flight feathers and are ready to fly at about the same time as the goslings are able to learn – at nine weeks old.”

Nine Weeks?  Really?  That means before the end of May!  Then what will we photograph?

We’ve only seen goslings, and no ducklings yet.  Hubby and I are really looking forward to seeing little baby ducks! There are so many different species on the refuge right now so I am curious to see what the babies will look like!

I think I should pack a picnic lunch and a couple lawn chairs and find a “good spot” to sit and watch and photograph all of these cute babies!

Maybe next weekend!

Family All in A Row

One thing about where we live and what we get to photograph, is it gives us a chance to not only see some cool birds, but it also gives us the opportunity to do a little research and find out interesting facts about the birds.  It is true, we are never to old to learn.

Never in my life would I imagine that I would be going to a wildlife refuge on a weekly basis, find a bird I haven’t seen before, take a picture of it, and go home and break out the bird book.  I’m not addicted, so I can’t be classified as a true “Birder” but it is fun to try and identify what you saw while you were out for the day!

One thing I will say is this.  Take some time to “unplug” go outside and stop and listen.  There are so many different sounding birds that it is really kind of cool to listen to how many different birds are out there!

Small Goslings on the Marsh

Set up the video camera, find a great spot on the bank of the water that has a lot of birds  turn on the camera, sit back and let the video listen for you.  You can even use your smart phone to capture the sounds!  You won’t be sorry.  Unless the wind is blowing right into the microphone!

Best of all, have fun!  You will fall in love with the sounds of nature.

Until Next Time!

Happy Shooting and Happy “Birding”

T Lynn

Nice day for a swim

Trees

Trees are wonderful.

Trees along the waters edge can be beautiful.

Trees in winter are amazing.

Trees in spring are amazing.

Trees are just simply wonderful.

In case you haven’t noticed, I love trees.

My favorite trees (right now) are the trees along state-line road (Highway 161) along the Lower Klamath National Wildlife Refuge

Lost Highway 161

For some reason these trees call to me, just like the culvert along this same road that begs to be photographed.

Who knows how long the trees have been along the waters edge.  What have they seen?  Drought?  Wet winter and spring?  Think of the birds and other wildlife that enjoy them as well.  How many critters have been raised in a tree, and how many eggs have been laid in a nest hanging high in a tree.  Life, Spring, Hope.  Trees are all that.  And More.

Nest copy

As a child, I was not one of those kids that climbed trees.  I think it was a fear of heights thing.  I was guilty of carving a name or two in an aspen tree.  Those trees, I am sure are long gone.  But the cluster of Aspen trees was beautiful.  White bark against spring green or the yellows of fall.

Where we live, we have Ponderosa Pine trees and Juniper Trees, amongst other various trees, but mostly tall Ponderosa trees.  I grew up with them in Montana, and I love to listen to the wind blowing through the tops the trees.  My sister lives in a heavily wooded area as well, and has many different trees, she has some  trees that will hit other trees when the wind blows, it’s makes for an eerie sound, but all in all, it’s very relaxing.  As long as they don’t topple

The Lower Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuge has beautiful meaningful trees. The Eagles and other raptor types nest in these trees, year after year.  The Willows.

Where eagles nest blog

These trees are closed off to the public from the first of March, to the middle of  July, so the young fledglings have time to grow.  Less disturbance is best for the baby birds.

Tree of Three

There are live trees, and there are “Snag” trees along the waters edge of the Refuge, and they all have an importance.

One of the snag trees is off the main road and on a side road.  We saw something in the tree, we knew it was a raptor of some sort, but weren’t really sure what it was.  Much to our surprise it was a large raptor facing the sunshine with the wings out enjoying the first warm spring day.

Golden Sunning 05

Much to my surprise it was a beautiful juvenile Golden eagle.  Such a gorgeous bird.  I was able to walk around a bit and capture this glorious bird before it flew off to who knows where.

Golden 04

The next morning we headed back out to the refuge.  And again, in this snag tree was another large bird.

Eagle 02

A juvenile Bald Eagle.  No matter how often I see these birds they still take my breath away.

I love the trees along the water.  I drive the road the same direction most times. When we decide to reverse the direction, it’s a whole new tree!  Still serene and peaceful.

With leaves and with out.  They’re beautiful either way.

IMG_2229

Waters Edge

Winter can be harsh, but the frost has a beauty as well.

Misty Morning Original

Add some photoshop magic to the same tree and it’s even more beautiful by the waters edge. Or in this case, the icy edge.

Misty Morning copy

Trees are beautiful no matter where they sit.  Along the water, along a ditch, in a field, in a park, or in your yard  They are homes.  They are shelter. They are strong.  They bring us shade on a hot summer day, and they bring us beautiful fall leaves for scrap books and memories. Trees can be dramatic.  Including the snag trees.  Not to mention, the commercial products that we use everyday from trees.  We kind of need those!

IMG_1170 copy

Whether you live in the city, the country, or the forest.  Trees are everywhere.

Go outside, find some trees.  See what you can find.  Hang a bird feeder, hang a bird house!  Don’t forget to photograph the beautiful tree!

Springtime in Farm Country

Happy Shooting!

T Lynn