Friday, July 31, 2009

Bar Harbor, Fourth of July

The Fourth of July is a big event in Bar Harbor. Early morning blueberry pancakes, late morning parade, afternoon seafood festival and evening fireworks. I saw the fireworks. Parking on this day is at a premium. We walked about six blocks for the fireworks. I was under the understanding that they set them off from a barge out in Frenchman's Bay but when I walked down closer they were setting them up from the end of the pier. Maybe the steady light rain had something to do with that. We found shelter under the Quarterdecks second story deck to get out of the rain. From there all I needed was a tripod and long exposures. Fireworks are cool.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Bass Harbor Head Light

The only lighthouse on Mount Desert Island is the Bass Harbor Head Light located on a granite hill in, ah, Bass Harbor. Overlooking Blue Hill Bay this lighthouse was built in 1858 and is still operated today by the U. S. Coast Guard. The Bass Harbor Light is red... 4 seconds of red light, 3 flashes and a single dark second. This journey takes you down to the southernmost tip of MDI. There sits a small parking lot that when you look seaward you can see the red light just above lawn level. A short hike and a whole lotta steps and you enter onto the famed granite rocks along the shore. From here you can get some pictures, watch the waterfowl catch breakfast or again just enjoy the view. You could do all of this if it wasn't for moron tourists who feel the need to be in front. Not taking pictures. Not marveling at a 151 year old light that is still serving. No, just hanging out without regards to the guys with the cameras who would appreciate a picture of this beautiful monument not be fouled by them. Sit over here behind me or go back to the car, either way move along. I spoke to another guy with his tripod and camera, he said he would use masking to eliminate this problem. I told him I'd just clone a rock over them if I had to. Oh, yeah, no blue sky here. This was our week in Maine. At least it wasn't raining. What else would expect for July?

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Beehive

Of the many trails on Acadia, and the few I hiked, the Beehive trail was by far the best. Again let me remind you that it was foggy as usual so although we got to experience the trail we missed out on what I can only imagine as the spectacular views. For this one we left the girls in the truck and made it a boys only trek. Don't get me wrong there were every type of hiker on the trail with us. Very little of this trail was relaxing. It included narrow ledges, makeshift bridges, hand rails and ladder steps. I hear the Precipice Trail is similar but it was closed due to nesting Peregrine Falcons. The first picture here is the view from Sand Beach parking lot and if you click on the second picture you can see lots of hikers on the trail. The trail is listed a strenuous with steady climbs. We only ran into one group going down the trail. We opted to take the Bowl Trail back down. It was a steady downhill hike based mainly in a dry creek bed.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Schooner Head

Schooner Head overlook is one of the first places to stop along the Loop Road, in Acadia National Park, that you can hike down to and climb out to the oceans edge. This is your first look at the "Rocky Coast of Maine". There is a cave below the trail's end that you could explore during low tide. The cave is only, maybe , 100 feet back in and the morning we visited it was still hours from low tide so we couldn't get inside. From the cave you can see across to Schooner Head there are several large homes. I guess if you have the money you can intrude upon everyone else's view. Check out the first picture... is that a head?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Frenchman's Bay

This week is all Bar Harbor, Mount Desert Island and Acadia National Park. Today is some of the boats in Frenchman's Bay on the northeast side of Bar Harbor. The islands in the back ground, for the most part, are the Porcupine Islands. First picture left side is just a piece of Bar Island. These were both taken the day we got there. The blue skies didn't stick around long. Neither did the visibility.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Feeding the Grackles

These are some more of the backyard birds from this spring. Both sets shot in early June. I was fortunate enough to watch this momma Grackle feeding it's fledgling. and the first picture on the suet cage, Wow, those eyes are burning tiny little hole right through me. Is that what Edgar Allen Poe had in mind when he wrote of the raven?

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Backyard Birds - Spring '09

Just some of the visitors in my small backyard this past spring. The robin bob-bob-bobbed along snatching up worms like they were laying there on the surface. The homing Pigeon either got lost or just needed a break. He was still hanging out the next morning but was gone that evening. This little guy want fed NOW. I think it might be a Common Grackle (check back tomorrow). A Mourning Dove on the fence, a Blue Jay and a House Sparrow looking for what they can find. I guess soon the summer and fall birds will start to show up.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Clymer Fire Department, Indiana Co., Pa.

OK, I will bow to pressure and help clear things up. Back in June I was in Indiana, Pa. for work. Just a short run up the road was a Mail Pouch barn, so, I took a short detour for some pictures. At this point I am just 2 miles from Clymer, Pa. So I ran a little more up the road for some pictures at the firehouse. Why? Well in June of 2006 the Vigilant Hose Company in Shippensburg sold their 1993 E-One engine, our old Engine 252, to the Clymer Fire Department. I try to keep tabs on our old apparatus (not as easy as it sounds) so I checked their website. All it says is that a picture of Engine 155 was coming soon. I was able to take a few pictures, but unable to talk with anyone so I don't know if there are plans for a rehab on the engine. Also thought I'd throw in a picture of their Suburban, Squad 152, how ironic. All they had done to the '93 was cover any reference to Vigilant Hose or Shippensburg with their own stickers. And our old company patch on the doors... they just removed the lettering.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Faces of the Confederacy, part 1

The first of several pictures I took of Confederate re-enactors during Shippensburg's March to Destiny in June 2009. For more of what I have to say about MtoD check here. Or for last year check here. Or even 2007, check here. And there's more. Or just go straight to the source, the MtoD website.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Studebaker & Mail Pouch (PG 114)

OK, there's a lot going on here. Painted Gentleman 114. First of all this fine barn is in Indiana County, PA, 2 miles east of the Borough of Clymer. It sits on Rayne Church Road but can easily be seen from Route 286. Second, there is the ad for Mail Pouch and and older wider Mail Pouch. Third, Studebaker. We all know Studebaker was a wagon/carriage/automobile manufacturer out of South Bend, Indiana. Founded in 1852 they started building electric cars in 1902 and moving onto gas engines in 1904. The last US plant closed in 1963 and the last Studebaker rolled off the Canadian lines in 1966. "Studebaker Automobiles - Good Used Cars - Indiana - For Your Service". And forth, under the Studebaker is an old Kentucky Club ad. "Smoke Kentucky Club Pipe Tobacco". Kentucky Club is often seen advertised along with Mail Pouch.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

the alley, 9:22 pm, the answer

OK, drum roll please. This is the 200 block of East Neff Avenue. Close to South Prince Street. The striped building on the left is Interstate Auto Body in King Court (204 East King Street).

the alley, 9:22 pm

Well, here it is. I said I would try one of these every month, around the middle of the month, but not on Monday's or Friday's. (That's a lot of self imposed rules) Anywho, here is the July version. I took this picture back in March and had trouble with the focusing in the dark, so I had to manually focus. And we see how well that worked out. Decided to keep this one color, so I blurred and added grain. Trust me if you know where this is nothing I did will change that. Check back at 6 this evening to see if you're right. And hey, I got another idea for a guessing game, I need to take a walk through town and get some fodder for that one..

Monday, July 20, 2009

Bubble Rock, Acadia NP

This is Bubble Rock, sitting on the South Bubble. We hiked to this by the South Bubble Trail. Up and back, same trail. A moderate trail by the "normal out of shape tourist" scale. But we made it to the top. Bubble rock is what is known as a glacial erratic. According to the Motorist Guide "a melting glacier deposited the coarse grained granite boulder after carrying it for 20 miles. Weighing between 11 and 14 tons, the boulder appears as though it may fall from it's perch, but it is actually quite secure." I assume that on a clear day you can see for miles and miles. This day we could almost see the road down below.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Pic'ing Wildflowers

I see more than just birds and critters on my walks. I don't hesitated to stop and get pictures of wildflowers. I don't know what most of them are but wildflowers can brighten your day as easily as a new bird spotted. The first is Queen Anne's Lace converted to black and white. The second are Red Raspberries. Yum. The rest shall remain nameless. Enjoy.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Swallows, Finch, Catbird, Mallards & More; Birdwalk 7/12/09

This weeks line up of the usual suspects caught on film... I mean caught on a digital memory card as an image consisting of a random seroies of 1's and 0's. These were all along the Big Spring last Sunday along with the Green Heron from yesterday's post. And a Cardinal and some RWBB's. First up we have a group of Barn Swallows on a wire. This is the first time in all my walks that they actually sat still. Second is a female American Goldfinch. Saw some males, too, but the weren't as cooperative. Third is a Grey Catbird fresh out of the swimming hole and drying off. Fourth and fifth are a group of Mallard Ducks, momma, poppa and two kiddlings. And finally, it's Muskrat Susie out and about looking for Muskrat Sam, no doubt.