East Clear Creek

With all the rain we just got, we hoped to get some low hanging clouds and fog hanging in the trees along East Clear Creek.

The bridge across the FR 95 / 96 Road had lifting fog as the sun tried to break through, and didn’t disappoint.

Fog streamed down through the trees to unveil East Clear Creek below. It was a memorable sight, and one I was happy to capture the terrific moment I found myself in.

Mingus Mountain

It’s always fun exploring new areas. We had never been to Mingus Mountain, so decided with weather coming in… it was a good time.

The campground is pretty developed, and was fairly full. But it was quiet and had a series of trails behind each campsite offering terrific views of Camp Verde and Cottonwood below.

We recall our friend Gary waxing poetic about Mingus Mountain when he used to hang glide from Mingus. Following massive rain and winds that we endured through the night and into the morning, we encountered a complete white out of low hanging clouds and fog.

We checked out Gary’s Mingus launch site and considered the courage it took to jump off this cliff into the great blue below. Ah, but I must take pause. Gary would admonish me as the ‘uninitiated’ for using such a word. A hang glider pilot does not ‘jump’ off a cliff, he flies. In fact, an experienced pilot approaches it with eagerness and exhilaration.

When we were there it was nothing but clouds – not a good day for hang gliding, but eerie and fantastic nonetheless. It was a nice spot, with beautiful views. We enjoyed the weather and all the moody scenes it provided, making for interesting photographs.

Our trip definitely reminded me that it’s fun and exciting to try new places and new experiences. It’s easy to get stuck in our doldrums of same ‘ol, same ‘ol. We need to get out more to enjoy new and different experiences.

Nova Scotia

We just got back from a week trip to Nova Scotia.  Many people asked us before we left, Why Nova Scotia?  I found that to be an odd question.  I ask… Why Not?

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Why does anyone go to a particular place for vacation?  Perhaps it’s because they have been before and enjoyed it, or maybe they want to try someplace new.  For us, we don’t generally go to the same place twice, and are always trying to find new places to experience grand new adventures.  Every person has different things that make their ideal vacation.  I think it was my sister-in-law, Kate, who originally raved about Cape Breton (the northern most island of Nova Scotia).  For Kate, I think the allure has more to do with the quiet solitude, Celtic influence, and musical flavor.  Frankly, things that have little bearing for me personally.

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Vacation ‘buying factors’ for us include great food and great photographs.  We love seafood… so Nova Scotia seemed to us like as good a place as any.  We had gotten a couple recommendations from other friends that had been there.  It has been on our GO TO list for some time.  So it came up to the top of the list and we scheduled the trip.

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We broke the trip into 2 parts:  (1) Cape Breton, the northern most island of Nova Scotia, home to the scenic Cabot Trail, and (2) Peggy’s Cove / Lunenburg coastal area.

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Cape Breton in known for it’s Celtic origins.  Even the signs are in Gaelic.  It’s also home to the windy scenic Cabot Trail that winds between the forest and over the hills.  The views yield mountains of trees tapering off into the sea, the occasional lighthouse, and vast hiking areas.

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For our trip we were gifted with overcast skies, gray clouds, and drizzly rain.  It made for poor sunrise/ sunsets, but interesting fog pix.

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Lobstering is a big industry in Nova Scotia, as is all things sea related (no big surprise as it’s an island surrounded by the ocean and bays).    Since we were there during lobster season we witnessed the hard working lobstermen coming in from their early morning hauls, and enjoyed many fruits of their labors (i.e. – lots of lobster 🙂 ).

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In Baddeck we went on a puffin tour trip and I was thrilled to see many very small Atlantic puffins.  My practice of panning photographs paid off as I swept my inadequate telephoto lens across the water to capture the fleeing small awkward birds.  What fun!  I wanted to turn around and go again.  Worth the trip alone!

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Not only does Baddeck have puffins (actually on Bird Islands off of Englishtown), Baddeck is also home to the Alexander Graham Bell museum and Baddeck Lobster Suppers, which in addition to great lobsters had fantastic mussels fresh from Cape Breton.

We had a fabulous time in Cape Breton, and were off to Peggy’s Cove.  See post here.