Minneapolis had so many surprises for me– not the least of which was the Mighty Mississippi creating this breathtaking scene at sunset. The sun set slowly and gently as a light, cool breeze blew over the Stone Arch Bridge where I stood. The distant roar of St. Anthony Falls was little more than a whisper, but it was enough to drown out all of my thoughts while I sat in awe at the beauty of this midwest metropolis that I have somehow missed out on for so long. With the day’s last light the city tightened its grip on my heart and made it certain that I will be returning here whenever I get the chance.
On the precipice of this lake the water dances in the sunset. The beauty hides the darkness beneath that can’t be seen until you cross the threshold. The two exist in such close proximity that the very edge of light is indistinguishable from that of the edge of darkness. You would never know if someone is on either side until they are fully submerged and gone from sight. It would be so easy to slip under, stop treading, and exhale. The last sight is that setting sun coming down with you.
Throughout all the traveling I’ve done, Philadelphia remains one of my favorite cities; probably number one overall. I assume that comes from all of the time I’ve spent with it. So many shows, meals, beers, walks, drives, bike rides, and jobs. It feels like home when nothing else does. As much as I do enjoy the city, there’s not a lot surrounding it that fulfills my appetite for adventure quite the way I want it to. It’s time to leave my favorite city in the rearview mirror and head into the sunset.
It’s amazing how serenity can be found in places built out of perpetual chaos. The waves at Portland Head pounded continuously as I perched on the edge of slippery rocks at sunset. The deafening crashes surrounded me and allowed me to bask in a moment where nothing else existed except the waves, the sky, and myself. Some places surprise you with their beauty, and some places let you down; Maine is exactly as you expect it to be. The ocean meets the rocky shoreline like a 19th century maritime painting, and you are transported to another world in which your problems don’t exist.
There’s a reason I always go out around sunset just to see what I can see. Especially when I’m in new places I like to be out around sunset to watch the sky change. Sometimes I get really lucky and come across beautiful little places like this river in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania where the sun dropped behind the many arched bridges along the water. It was a silent and peaceful evening along the banks, where steps dropped down so I could sit and enjoy the beauty of central PA. I’m going back this weekend, and I can only hope for something nearly as nice.
Due to my being very sick over the past weekend and having to travel for work, I haven’t been able to post any new photos and I’ve been slow getting this one posted. I actually haven’t had any desire to take new photos with how I’ve felt, so I went back into the archives and pulled out this one from the roof of the Divine Lorraine in Philadelphia. This was one of the most beautiful sunset I’ve ever seen, partially because of the colors and clouds but also because I was sitting on top of this gorgeous old relic of a building in center city Philly looking west over the whole town along with a handful of other adventurers who found their way up there on a warm autumn night. Perfection.
The landscape of southern Utah is so varied that it’s hard to identify at times. This shot is from somewhere near Buckskin Gulch near the Arizona border. Watching the road curve ahead into the distance is always exciting, especially with views like this. We took several dirt roads to get where we were going as you often have to in the backcountry of this area. They are often washboarded or covered with soft sand so travel becomes a gamble. We made it in and out of every one without incident somehow.
There are so often random amazing spots in places you aren’t looking for it. One of the best parts about being in a new place every day is discovering these little spots and feeling somehow comforted by the ubiquitous beauty that exists everywhere if you can appreciate it. This one happened to be on a disc golf course in South Carolina. As the sun was going down, the well-designed and fun course was challenging us, but I was holding my own. Can’t get mad at a missed putt with these surroundings.
Eastern Texas is flat. It’s so flat that any little bit of rain seems to fill up the slightest dips in the ground and turn city parks into marshes. It has made it a challenge to find things to do outdoors even though we haven’t been hampered by the falling rain itself. Camping has been tricky as well, but the reflections in the flooded streets had us in the way of a few cars while we shot. All they gave us was a few honks and dirty looks though. Sorry, Texas motorists, we’re just trying to capture the beauty of your state.
Hiking in Utah has plenty of rewarding views, and they’re often mixed with amazingly fun climbs. In Capitol Reef National Park we did what we could with the short time we had there, but that was a good amount. We hiked up to a wide canyon between two high walls that allowed us to explore several side canyons to climb up into. It was enough fun just playing in those, but the climb back out to the main trail was this great silhouette of rocks in front of the colorful sunset sky. We are so lucky to get to see these things regularly.
It’s been a fun week spent in Park City, Utah skiing, hanging out with friends, and sitting in hot tubs. It was a resort experience without having to stay at a resort. Sort of. Either way, this place is full of fun stuff to do and there is beauty in all directions. There is a hill in the middle of town called PC Hill, named for the big “PC” letters that adorn the side of it, visible from most anywhere you are in the city. We hiked to the top of the hill last night to watch the sun go down on this great place one last time before we leave. This paints a nice pictures of a very Utah kind of city.
As I’m heading west for a while I’ll be trying to post a snapshot of the previous day. The plan is to be up for sunrise daily and try to catch sunset in some amazing places. I always make note of the last New Jersey sunset I see before a trip. In this case as I was driving north to begin the trip the sun was setting over the highway I just came from. While things don’t always go as planned and riding off into the sunset seems like a fairy tale at times, I’m trying my best to look forward to the sunrises.
The last few hours have been hectic as I’ve been packing for a lengthy road trip to some of my favorite places. At times none of it seems real and my mind is struggling to put all the pieces together to form cohesive thoughts. Ideas come at me from all different directions in varying levels of formation while I try to make sense of it all and make sure I have everything done that I need to. I have finally reached the end of that process and now all that’s left is the waiting to hit the road. Looking forward to new sunrises, sunsets, and everything in between. All that from a window.
During our ski trip to Vermont we stayed in the small town of Rutland. It’s a cute, surprisingly bustling little city with a nice Main Street full of local businesses. I’d recommend the Yellow Deli for food and the Hop’n Moose for a local craft beer. I found my way to the roof of the parking garage for this fantastic view of the city just after sunset. I was glad I took the questionable elevator to the roof to experience a gorgeous blue hour from above.
Whenever I’m in a new place I like to find a nice spot to watch the sun set. It’s nice to have the chance to sit somewhere for a while and reflect on the day while watching the sky change colors. In Harrisburg, Pennsylvania I sat on these steps for a good hour or more just thinking and watching birds play along the water. It was incredibly calming and a good way to reset my mind after a day of working and stress.
Back before everything was covered under snow we were having a somewhat mild winter. At Brooklyn Bridge Park we climbed out over some rocks past the sign that said not to climb on the rocks. We assumed that was just a suggestion anyway. I liked the silhouettes of sunken detritus around small rock island. Birds were everywhere and people were scarce. It was a nice way to experience the sunset.
I was feeling like a basic image today; something that didn’t involve snow or too much analysis. The sunsets over Union Lake in Millville are often breathtaking and colorful. I live just around the corner, but I still don’t seem to get there often enough. By the time I notice the sky lighting up out my window it’s almost too late. I’m looking forward to seeing so many sunsets in new places in the coming months, but I will always love this one spot in my hometown.
While trying to find the “perfect” shot of these smoke stacks, we took a wide route around the nearby blocks looking for any clearings to see them as the sun was rapidly setting behind. This is one of several shots I snapped from across Naval Square. It isn’t precisely what I was looking for, but some of the unintended elements in the foreground ended up working for me. The problem with having a specific idea of what you want a photo to look like is that it almost never turns out that way. You just have to make the best out of what you can get.
Going back to last month in D.C., I got this shot at the Jefferson Memorial, which is photogenic in many ways. I love the warmth of this shot as the sun was going down, and the temperature was dropping with it. It’s funny how photos can evoke a warm feeling even when the memory associated with that place is one of bitter cold. I just really enjoyed the light here and the way the columns open up to the sky as it curves.
Some days while skiing you can get really lucky with the weather. On clear afternoons in Vermont the mountains stretch out beautifully across the landscape while you glide down wide lanes of white. The state doesn’t seem quite as frozen from this view, and the rolling hills seem to go on forever out to the horizon from the top of Killington peak. As I’ll be heading back to Vermont this weekend for some skiing I was looking back at some of the old photos. This will not be a view I’ll see since Killington is so often overwhelmed by people. Hoping I have more time skiing and less in lines!
Yes, another photo from Washington, D.C. The Washington Monument isn’t the easiest thing to photograph in an interesting way, but the curves along the tidal basin as we returned to our car at sunset just caught my eye leading up to the stone obelisk bathed in golden light. The water is that choppy because it was very windy and blowing icy cold air across the water at my fingers while I took this shot.
When we were in D.C. we spent a good amount of time at the Jefferson Memorial exploring the angles and seeing how the light changed as the sun went down. I really love this image of TJ looking out hopefully over the country he helped build while the sun sets peacefully over the nation’s capital. Even though it was pretty bitter cold, there were still busloads of people coming out to visit these landmarks, and the monument lit up beautifully inside with the late-day sunlight.
I think the Jefferson Memorial is one of the more overlooked of the major monuments in Washington, D.C. It sits a little farther away from the Mall, but the area around the tidal basin is gorgeous (even when there are no cherry blossoms in bloom.) It was freezing with the wind coming across the water, but the sunset was great and I caught this image as we hurried back to the car for warmth. The sky lit up perfectly after the sun dropped below the horizon and let these trees makes some really amazing dancing silhouettes.
Even just over a month ago things still had some color to them. In the recent, color-free days of snow and frost, I wanted to add a photo with some color to it, even if it’s mostly leaves that are on their way to death. This little area is always a nice place to get off the main trail and away from the other people at the park for a short time on the trail around South Vineland Park. You might have to hop over the water to get through, but it’s worth it as a scenic detour.