The Beauty Around Us

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

Posts tagged ‘Deer’

Chincoteague Vacation – Day 4

Late in the morning we rode our bicycles in the neighborhood to Veteran’s Memorial Park. 

Veteran’s Memorial Park sits along the Assateague Channel

Our round trip ride was 5 miles.

We ate lunch at McDonald’s and then drove onto the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, stopping for photo opportunities along Beach Access Road.  We saw wild ponies in the marsh, closer than we have seen them in past years.  There were wild ponies in the pony corral, too, near the Woodland Trail.

According to a delmava now news story, published on April 1st, “Chincoteague pony stallion Riptide and his band were penned in the south corral on Assateague Island after visitors to the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge disregarded warnings not to approach the wild ponies…The ponies will remain in the corral until the spring roundup April 12 and 13”.

We saw great blue herons, egrets and wood ducks.

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Snowy Egret

Pair of Hooded Mergansers (Thanks EileeninMD for ID)

We spent a couple hours at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, before returning to our vacation home.  We relaxed for a couple hours.

We returned to the Wildlife Refuge around 4:30 pm.  We went for a drive around the Wildlife Loop.  We saw birds, a fox, Sika deer, egrets, turtles, snapping turtles and a muskrat.

Red-Wing Blackbird

Mama Fox

Mama Fox – What a face!

Mama Fox

Two Egrets

I love the reflections!

Two Egrets, a Great Egret taking flight

Three Egrets, a Snowy Egret in flight

Snowy Egret

 

Muskrat

Snapping Turtle

Painted Turtle

Two Snapping Turtles Mating

Leaving the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, after an approximately 45-minute visit, we drove to Food Lion and picked up dinners for three nights (through Thursday).  Our purchases included three ready-made salads and three Culinevo ready-made dinner entrees–lasagna, beef stew and beef and noodles.  All dinner entrees are microwaveable. We shared a Chef Salad and the beef stew for dinner.  For dessert we had cheesecake.

We watched a few more episodes of NYPD Blue and went to bed.

Allegany State Park Deer

We went for a drive yesterday, when Bob came home from work (3:30 pm).  We drove, first, to a dead end street alongside the Allegheny River here in Warren PA.  One of Bob’s coworkers told Bob that he sees an eagle often, sitting in a tree on one of the river islands.  We didn’t see an eagle. 

Leaving the riverside, we drove along the eastern side of the Allegheny Reservoir and through Allegany State Park.  We didn’t see any wildlife, as we drove PA Route 59, PA Route 321, PA Route 346 or NY Route 280.  I am glad that Bob decided to add a drive through Allegany State Park, as we saw 14 deer at various places in the park. 

Sorry deer; there is no entertainment at the amphitheater in the Winter!

Two deer in a field

My new camera did a good job focusing on this deer that had brush all around it.

These deer very near the road.

I stayed inside our car, but the deer feeding very near the road were not afraid of us.

This deer looks like it is talking to me.

Peek-a-boo! I see you!

Deer feeding near the road

 

Leaving Allegany State Park, via the Red House Exit, we took I-86 to the Steamburg NY exit and drove along the western side of the Allegheny Reservoir.  We saw eight more deer, during this portion of the drive.  All total, we saw 19 deer!

We stopped at Arby’s for dinner.  Bob had a salad with a cookie.  I had a beef ‘n cheddar sandwich with curly fries and a mint chocolate shake.  The shake is available only for a limited time each year.  It is a once-a-year treat for me.

We returned home around 7:30 pm.

Easter Vacation – Day 4 of 5

The fourth day of our vacation fell on Easter Sunday (April 20th).  After breakfast we checked out of the hotel and were on our way west by 7:00 am.

Wait a minute!  Weren’t we supposed to stay four nights at our hotel?  Our original plan was to stay four nights in Waynesboro VA.   We awakened early on Easter Sunday.  While waiting for the breakfast room to open, Bob mentioned wanting to go home a different way than the route we took coming to Waynesboro. He said the different route home would add about an hour to our travel time. When we made our vacation plans, we talked about driving Skyline Drive in addition to driving the Blue Ridge Parkway.  We had crossed off driving Skyline Drive soon after our vacation began.  As we didn’t have anything planned for Easter Sunday, I asked Bob if he would be interested in starting home a day early by way of the new route. I love spontaneity!

So, at 7:00 am, we departed Waynesboro VA.  We drove to the Best Western Grove City Inn in Grove City PA, where we spent the night.  Here is a map of our route.

The first part of our drive to Grove City was via U.S. Route 250.  This could be one of the best routes we have ever taken.  U.S. Route 250 takes you up and over two large mountains, with great scenery all around.    We followed U.S. Route 250 west through Staunton VA and the George Washington National Forest.   We made our first stop while in the George Washington National Forest.

According to the inscription on this marker I was standing in the middle of what was once Fort Edward Johnson, when I took this picture.  Confederate soldiers built this fort in 1862 under the command of Brigadier General Edward Johnson, a career officer from Virginia.

To the right of the interpretive marker was a 0.5 mile trail.

Confederate Breastworks Interpretive Trail

The trail led to what remains of the mile of trench and breastworks, which were built by Confederate soldiers to defend the Shenandoah Valley from an invasion by Union Troops marching from the west.

Confederate Breastworks Interpretive Trail

Returning to our car from the trail, we admired the view from what used to be Fort Edward Johnson.

Fort Edward Johnson Overlook

 

Leaving the George Washington National Forest, we passed through the town of Monterey.  Our second stop was just past Monterey.  We pulled off alongside the road, and I took several photographs of the Blue Grass Valley.

Blue Grass Valley

Blue Grass Valley

Blue Grass Valley

The Blue Grass Valley is beautiful.  We had to content ourselves with a bird’s eye view of the valley, as time constraints did not permit us to drive through the valley.  Oh, how I would have loved to meander the rural roads of the Blue Grass Valley!

Blue Grass Valley

Blue Grass Valley

While taking these photographs of the Blue Grass Valley, I enjoyed the song of birds singing, geese honking and the warm sunshine beating down on my head.

 

We made one last stop in Virginia, shortly before the West Virginia border.  The reason for the stop was not to photograph a scenic vista.  The reason for the stop was to photograph a deer alongside the road.

The deer was not skittish; it seemed curious about us.

Our next stop was in the town of Durbin WV, located in the heart of the Monogahela National Forest.  While traveling along U.S. Route 250 I kept finding reasons to return to this part of Virginia and West Virginia.  I found yet another reason for a return trip in the town of Durbin.

Durbin’s Main Street

Durbin Train Depot

Durbin Train Depot

Durbin Train Depot

The town of Durbin is home to a tourist train, the Durbin Rocket. I want to take a ride on this train!

Leaving Durbin we climbed Cheat Mountain.

At the top of Cheat Mountain, we enjoyed this view of the Allegheny Mountains.

Soon after leaving the Monogahela National Forest we turned north onto U.S. Route 219 and made our way to Interstate 79.

We were fairly certain that we would not drive all the way home in one day, even though it was quite possible to do so. It became a certainty that we would be making the trip home in two days at 1:00 pm, when I booked a room for us at the Best Western Grove City Inn in Grove City, PA.   Having the Internet on our mobile phones, while traveling, is a convenience that we both enjoy.

We reached our hotel in Grove City around 4:00 pm.    We checked in, and then went in search of a restaurant. Hoss’s Steak and Sea House was closed. Kings Family Restaurant had been open but closed early, as was the case for the Eat ‘n Park Restaurant.   We finally found an open restaurant.  Primanti Brothers was open.  It was the first time either of us ate at Primanti Brothers.  We each ordered fish ‘n chips for dinner, a far cry from the baked ham dinner that I had hoped to have for Easter dinner.  After dinner, we retired to our room for the night.

Oh, we did make another stop before arriving at our hotel in Grove City.  We stopped at McConnells Mill State Park, which is located about 20 miles from Grove City.  I will share photographs from McConnells Mill State Park in my next blog post.

Easter Vacation – Day 3 of 5: Blue Ridge Parkway (Bearwallow Gap to James River)

Bob and I spent three nights (April 17-20) in Waynesboro, Virginia. Waynesboro is located near where the Skyline Drive ends and the Blue Ridge Parkway begins. Our original plan was to stay in Waynesboro for four nights, but we departed a day early. I will explain why we left Waynesboro a day early in a future blog post.

The highlights on Day 3 (April 19) of our Easter vacation included a visit to Natural Bridge, walking on a swinging bridge in Buchanan and driving the Blue Ridge Parkway. Thursday’s blog post provided photographs and details about our visit to Natural Bridge. Friday’s blog post was about our brief stop in Buchanan VA.  From Buchanan we took Route 43 to the Blue Ridge Parkway. We entered the Parkway at Milepost 90.9, Bearwallow Gap, and exited at Milepost 0, Rockfish Gap.   Our 90-mile drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway yielded many photographs.  I will share those photographs via four separate blog posts.  In this blog post I will share photographs from Milepost 90.9, Bearwallow Gap, to just before Milepost 63.8, James River Visitor Center.

The Onion Mountain Overlook is located at Milepost 80.

A short trail guides you through rhododendron and mountain laurel.

This trail would be much more pretty in early June,
when the rhododendron and mountain laurel are in bloom.

Onion Mountain Overlook (Elevation 3,195 feet)

The Blue Ridge Parkway reaches its highest point in Virginia on Apple Orchard Mountain at Milepost 76.5.

High Point on the Parkway in Virginia

Apple Orchard Mountain, elevation 3,950 feet

Apple Orchard Mountain, elevation 3,950 feet

At Milepost 76 is the View Arnold Valley Overlook.  The elevation here is 3,700 feet.  Arnold Valley is 2,900 feet below.

The Alleghenies are seen in the distance, with Arnold’s Valley at the foot of the mountains.

There is a second Arnold Valley Overlook a little farther north on the Parkway.

The elevation at this overlook is 3,510 feet, with Arnold Valley lying 2,710 feet below.

Peek-a-Boo, Bob!  I see you!

Bob took the next two pictures of me with his phone camera.

Arnold Valley Overlook

Arnold Valley Overlook

We saw a deer, while driving along the Blue Ridge Parkway.

The deer was kind enough to pose for me!

We began our approach to Milepost 63.8, James River Visitor Center, at approximately noon.  It took us about 1 1/2 hours to travel 27.2 miles.

The redbud trees are beautiful!

Easter Vacation – Day 2 of 5: Blue Ridge Parkway

Bob and I spent three nights (April 17-20) in Waynesboro, Virginia.  Waynesboro is located near where the Skyline Drive ends and the Blue Ridge Parkway begins.  Our original plan was to stay in Waynesboro for four nights, but we departed a day early.  I will explain why we left Waynesboro a day early in a future blog post.

The highlights on Day 2 (April 18) of our Easter vacation included seeing two waterfalls and driving the Blue Ridge Parkway.  Yesterday’s blog post provided photographs and details about Crabtree Falls, the first waterfall that we saw.  This blog post provides photographs and details about the second waterfall that we saw, as well as our drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

From Crabtree Falls we made our way back up Route 56 to the Blue Ridge Parkway. We entered the Parkway at Milepost 27 ( Tye River Gap) and headed south.   We were on the Blue Ridge Parkway for a few miles today (from milepost 27 to milepost 63.7). The views from the overlooks were good but would have been better had it been a less hazy, less overcast day.

We saw five deer, while driving the Blue Ridge Parkway.

This is one of five deer that we saw, while driving on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Our first stop on the Blue Ridge Parkway was at Milepost 34.4 (Yankee Horse Ridge, elev. 3,140 feet).   I read on the Internet that Yankee Horse Ridge marks where, during the Civil War, a hard-riding Union man’s horse fell and had to be shot.  The two attractions at Yankee Horse Ridge are a reconstructed spur of an old logging railroad and Wigwam Falls.

Yankee Horse Ridge (Elevation: 3,140 feet) – Old Logging Railroad

The easy 0.2 mile Yankee Horse Trail includes a short stretch of reconstructed narrow-gauge railroad track once known as the Irish Creek Railway.  This railway was built in 1919 and completed in 1920.  It was 50 miles long.  The tracks were built to haul the lumber from the logging that was happening in the area prior to the construction of the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Old Logging Railroad

The trail also loops around a waterfall.

Bob and I at Wigwam Falls

Wigwam Falls

After leaving Yankee Horse Ridge we made a couple more stops at scenic overlooks, before exiting the Parkway at Milepost 63.7 (James River).

Second stop on Blue Ridge Parkway

Third Stop on Blue Ridge Parkway

By the time we reached the James River it was 1:00 pm, and we were hungry.  There were no dining facilities open on the Blue Ridge Parkway. We could have eaten lunch at one of the many overlooks had we thought to pack a picnic lunch! We exited the Parkway at James River and drove to Lynchburg, where we ate lunch at Applebee’s. It was around 3:00 pm and even more overcast when we finished lunch. We decided to return to our hotel, rather than continue our drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway. We told the GPS to take us back to our hotel in Waynesboro.  This map shows our route, after leaving Crabtree Falls.

 

Later in the evening, we went shopping at a nearby Kroger store.  We picked up cheese, meat and crackers for a light dinner, as well as for a picnic lunch for tomorrow.

We watched “The Following” on Hulu Plus (Yes, we packed the ROKU).  After watching “The Following”, I read for a short time.   I went to bed a little after 9:00 pm.

The Two T’s

Bob took off work Monday and Tuesday. I planned Monday’s activities; Bob was in charge of Tuesday’s activities. As one would expect, Monday was filled with photographic opportunities. I am sharing the fruit of those photographic opportunities with you throughout this week.

We departed home (Warren, PA) around 9:00 am. We didn’t return home until 9 hours later! We drove through several western Pennsylvania counties. Our first stop was in Clarion, PA.  Our second stop was at Brady’s Bend Overlook and East Brady.  Our third stop was in Parker.  We made a few photo stops while on the road between Parker and Cranberry.  We ate lunch at Bob Evans Restaurant, while in Cranberry.  After lunch, we drove to the Kennerdell Scenic Overlook.  From Kennerdell we drove to Oil City.  After leaving Oil City, we made two more stops along the Allegheny River — at Tionesta and Tidoute — before returning home.

This was our route back home from Oil City.

 

 

Tionesta Boat Access Area

Allegheny River, as viewed from Trek and Rec Trail
Tidioute, PA

We departed Route 62 in Tidioute, choosing to return home via Route 337.  We saw three deer and a few turkeys, while on this route.

Deer

Turkeys in a Field
You can see in the snow where the turkeys had been scratching.

This blog post concludes Monday’s activities.

Bob had Tuesday off work as well.  Bob was in charge of planning Tuesday’s activities.  On Tuesday morning Bob watched our granddaughters at their house for a short time, while Stacey ran to the store to pick up a few groceries.   Throughout the afternoon and evening we watched a variety of shows on TV.  Tuesday was mainly a lazy day.  It is good to have one of those types of days every now and then!

Happy Birthday to Me

Yesterday was my birthday, and I spent the day with my best friend — my husband, Bob.

We awakened early and watched a couple episodes of “House of Cards” before 9:00 am. “House of Cards” is an American political drama television series.  The entire first season, 13 episodes, premiered on February 1, 2013, on Netflix.  A second season of 13 episodes premiered on February 14, 2014.   Netflix announced on February 4, 2014 that the show had been renewed for a third season.  Both Bob and I enjoyed watching “House of Cards”.  We watched the last episode of Season 2 last night, after returning home from my birthday drive.  We look forward to Season 3.  It will be a long wait.

After watching a couple episodes of “House of Cards” yesterday morning, we went for a drive.  Our final destination was the Seneca Allegany Casino in Salamanca, NY; however, we made a few stops along the way.

Our first stop was at Kinzua Dam.

While at Kinzua Dam, we spotted a couple eagles standing way out on the ice.  I barely had time to get my camera from the back seat and exchange a 12-50mm lens for a 75-300mm lens, before the eagles flew off.  I need to learn how to capture good pictures of birds in flight. My pictures are grainy and blurry. Part of the problem is that I don’t have enough reach with my camera lens, even though my 75-300mm lens provides an equivalent focal length of 600mm. The other problem I have is focusing on a moving object, especially when I have only one opportunity to lock in that focus.

This is the best picture of an eagle in flight that I captured yesterday.

From Kinzua Dam we continued on Route 59 to McKean County, where we turned left onto Route 321.  This route was most picturesque, with the trees frosted with snow and the overcast sky giving way to blue skies.

Frosty Trees Along Route 321 in McKean County, PA

Frosty Trees Along Route 321 in McKean County, PA

Frosty Trees Along Route 321 in McKean County, PA

Frosty Trees Along Route 321 in McKean County, PA

Upon reaching the intersection of Routes 321 and 346, we turned right onto Route 346 (towards Bradford, PA).

Marilla Reservoir

After a quick photo stop at Marilla Reservoir, we continued on Route 346 to Bradford.  We turned left onto Route 4009, which we followed to Allegany State Park.

Our first stop was at Science Lake.

Quaker Lake

Bob, with Red House Administration Building in background

Bob took this photograph of me, with Red House Administration Building in background

Red House Administration Building

We started our drive outside the park from the Red House area.  We drove along ASP Route 1 to the park’s Salamanca, NY entrance.

We saw young deer grazing alongside ASP Route 1.

There is a scenic overlook just past the Salamanca entrance to Allegany State Park.  The overlook provides a spectacular view over the valley and to the hills in the distance.

The road seen in this photograph is Interstate 86.
In the distance there is a farm.
If you see yellow farm buildings, you have located the farm.

I have always wanted to photograph this farm. I admire it each time we pass it Interstate 86.  I never stopped to take a picture because of the fast-moving traffic. When I recognized the farm from the scenic overlook, I was so happy that I had my long lens with me.

Valent Dairy Farm, as seen from ASP 1 overlook

From the scenic overlook, it was only a few minutes’ drive to the Seneca Allegany Casino.  We arrived at the casino in the early afternoon. We ate lunch at Thunder Mountain Buffet.  The casino has a special promotion on every Sunday through Thursday through February 27–buy a buffet and get $15 free slot play.  Bob and I received $15 each. I received an extra $5 credit because it was my birthday (another promotion). Bob received an extra $10 credit on his card. We don’t know why, although I think it was because he had enough points on his card to qualify for $10 free slot play. According to the “Free Slot Day Every Day You Play” promotion, Bob should have received an email informing him of the $10 free slot play.  As far as I know, he didn’t receive that email (or he overlooked it).  We had a good luck at the casino!  I left the casino with $46 and change; Bob left with $19 and change. I didn’t spend a penny of my money. Bob did spend $33 for our lunches, which was my birthday present.   It was nice that he got back $19 of that expenditure.

It was a great day overall, one of my favorite birthday celebrations.

The Frog and PenguINN

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

Bicycling the beauty around us

This is a bicycling journal.

Forester (Farster) Ancestry

The Ancestry of My Grandpap Roy Wilson "Pete" Forester (1915-1989)

The World according to Dina

Notes on Seeing, Reading & Writing, Living & Loving in The North

Skid and Sandy On The Road

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

vivacioushoopster

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

Brown About

The Motorhome Adventures of Joan and Stephen

My Mommy's Place

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

Viewing nature with Eileen

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

Deep Thoughts

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

Rambling On

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

Talk and Chatter

Reviews, talk, and fun

Senior Moments

The random musings of a fairly active Tennessee retiree

Pics & Pieces

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

PHOTOJOURNAL OF CORKER2

TRYING TO DO THIS WITHOUT A DEGREE!

Pennsylvania Wildlife Photographer

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

MY QUALITY TIME

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

Linda's Peaceful Place

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

Life's Funny Like That

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

JOYFUL REFLECTIONS

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

I'll give you a piece of my mind

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

Hospitality Lane

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

Gretchen's Traveling

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

An English Girl Rambles from 2016 to ....

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