The Beauty Around Us

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Mourning Dove

It seems as though each year a pair of mourning doves builds a nest in our pavilion.

This mourning dove sat patiently on a shepherd’s hook in our backyard, as I took multiple photographs.

Is this my better side?

A Mourning Dove’s throat puffs up without opening its bill, when it coos.

Bob captured the following video on a wildlife cam.

The building of a nest in our pavilion appears it will happen again this year.

Turkeys and a Deer

On our way home from Letchworth State Park a flock of turkeys crossed the road in front of us.  We stopped on Akeley Road in Russell PA in front of the yard to which the turkeys had crossed.

Turkeys and a deer along Akeley Road in Russell, PA

When I took this picture I didn’t see the deer in the background.  My focus was on the flock of turkeys.  As I lowered my camera, after taking this picture, I saw movement to the left.  I saw the deer’s raised white tail disappearing out of my sight.  I looked at the picture that I had taken.  I was glad that I had captured a picture of the deer in addition to the turkeys.  As a bonus, the deer was looking at me!

 

 

Letchworth State Park Day Trip

We took advantage of the sunny day on Sunday, February 21st by going for a drive.

We drove to Letchworth State Park, which is located 35 miles south of Rochester, NY.  The park, often referred to as the “Grand Canyon of the East”, is a spectacular place.  The park’s magnificent scenery includes waterfalls and a gorge.  We have visited Letchworth State Park many times over the years.   We enjoy our visit each time we go.

If you visit Letchworth State Park in the winter, it is important to note that the Portageville Gate is closed for the season.  In addition Park Road closes seasonally between the Perry and Castile gates.

We entered Letchworth State Park, around noon, via the Castile Gate and turned right onto Park Road.  Our first stop was opposite Archery Field.

Archery Field Overlook of Genesee River and Gorge

I see a shadow of a person holding a basket on his head, where the frozen water has thawed.  Do you?

Our second stop was at Inspiration Point.

At Inspiration Point visitors are blessed with a spectacular vista that overlooks the Genesee River and Gorge. Upstream you see two waterfalls – the Middle Falls and the Upper Falls.  A train trestle spans above the Upper Falls.

Inspiration Point – Middle Falls

Inspiration Point – Upper Falls

Our next stop was at the Glen Iris Inn, where we enjoyed another view of the Middle Falls.  We got to see the Glen Iris fountain as an ice tower as well.

Middle Falls as seen from Glen Iris Inn grounds

 

Bob took this video of the Glen Iris Fountain with our GoPro camera.

Bob took this picture of the two of us as well.

Bob and I with Glen Iris Fountain in the background

I found a video on Facebook that explains how the Glen Iris fountain works and why it freezes into a beautiful ice tower during cold winters.  Please click here to view that video.

Our next (and last) stops were at the Upper and Middle Falls.

The Upper Falls had some water flow, but the falls were mostly frozen.

Likewise, the Middle Falls had some water fall but were mostly frozen.

The ice along the cliff at Middle Falls was particularly beautiful.

In total we spent about 1 1/2 hours at Letchworth State Park.  We couldn’t ask for a better winter day for our visit to the park.  It was a picture perfect day!

Owl in Tree

Do you see the “owl” in the tree?

You are not looking for a real owl.  You are looking for an owl that appears to be carved out of wood.

Look straight up the trunk of the tree on the left.  The “carved” owl is sitting in the middle, where the tree begins to branch off.

Do you see the owl?

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Happy Valentine’s Day to all of my blog followers!

The top photograph was taken in November 2020, during our Thanksgiving week vacation in Chincoteague VA.  The photograph on the left along the bottom row was taken, while on our first date, in Annapolis MD in May 1998.   The bottom right photograph was taken in February, this year. Bob and I will celebrate our 23rd wedding anniversary in September, this year.

A Sunny Day Drive

Bob and I went for a drive on the afternoon of February 4th.  We drove around the Allegheny Reservoir and through Allegany State Park near Salamanca, NY. 

We stopped at Science Lake.  

Science Lake at Allegany State Park. Look at that beautiful blue sky and the piles of snow.

On the way home Bob said he wanted to go to Washington Park.  I didn’t want to go to Washington Park because I didn’t want to risk getting stuck in the snow.  The narrow, rutted and gravel entry road is not maintained in the winter.  Bob took us there anyway.  

View of Warren from Washington Park

Bob took this picture of me at Washington Park

This is a dash cam video of our drive to and from Washington Park.  Bob edited the video to add music and a few still images.

I am glad Bob didn’t listen to me (this time LOL).  We didn’t get stuck, and the view of Warren from the park was splendid!

Hells Hollow Falls

This is an “on this day memory” from 5 years ago.  On January 31, 2016 we visited McConnells Mill State Park, where we followed a park map to Hells Hollow Trail–a 0.5 mile trail that leads to a waterfall. We parked in an unpaved parking lot, located at the trail head, and hiked the fairly easy trail to Hells Hollow Falls.

The majority of Hells Hollow Trail was level and easily navigated.
We took the right-hand path to the waterfall.

It was a fairly steep descent the last few feet to the waterfall.  The trail was very icy on the way down to the waterfall.

We hung onto the rail and made it to the waterfall without too much difficulty.

 

At the end of the railing we found wooden steps that led down to the creek bed.  The steps were free of snow and ice. The water was shallow enough that we were able to walk into the creek to gain a good position for taking photographs.

Hells Hollow Falls


This visit was the first (and only time so far) that Bob and I saw this waterfall.  I would like to one dayL combine a visit to McConnells Mill State Park and this waterfall with a visit to nearby Living Treasures Wild Animal Park with our granddaughters.  It has been 5 years since Bob and I visited Hells Hollow Waterfall and even longer since we visited the animal park.  The hike to the waterfall would be easy for the girls, and they would love to see the animals at Living Treasures Wild Animal Park.

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