Sunset Home

We had a good night last night. Dinner was ready when I got home, and we ate quickly. After we donned hiking gear, and headed up the mountain. Recently I moved out of Manchester, back to the country where I belong. One are my days trying to dodge heroin needles, and angry glances of people in the supermarket. No more sirens in the middle in the night.

Whenever we get a chance, we hike the mountain. It is not a big hill, but it is good for training. It also gives us a great view in most directions. It is a nice place to get away from the world. I wish I could spend more time up in the mountains. I feel total peace when I hiking, everything else fades away, and it is just me and the mountain.

White Mountains 544

We stood at the top last night, and I snapped a couple pictures. I then take some time to relax and enjoy the view. The Monadnock Region laid out like a blanket below us. It may not be the biggest mountains in the world, but its home.

By the Lakeside

I had the joy of hiking up to Lonesome Lake in Franconia Notch this weekend. It was an incredible day, and I took some amazing pictures. Winter is nice because it is quiet, and it many ways you get to enjoy nature in more of an organic way. You all seem to enjoy my pictures so I wanted to share some with you this week. I hope you enjoy, and more will be coming.

 

lonsome lake 112.JPG

Photo By Colleen Ann.

The Little Things On North Pack.

Yesterday was a beautiful day in the Monadnock Region, and we finally got out on a hike. We chose to hike North Pack Monadnock, a mountain that is located close to our home. We left shortly before noon taking Teds Trail to Carolyn Trail. I have been up the mountain numerous times, but this route was new to me. It is a place that few people know about, and because of this it has remained a special place. The entire time we were hiking we saw two people. Its one of the main reasons why we like staying close to home. The crowds are absent, and you get the same type of incredible scenery. Sometimes it is nice to get out into a quiet place that has been not been discovered.

Wapack. Peterborough NH. Photo By Colleen Ann.

Wapack.
Peterborough NH.
Photo By Colleen Ann.

The Monadnock Region is lucky to be blessed with many great hiking trails. Home to several large tracts of conservation land, the region has many trails and places for contemplation. Many of these smaller peaks are tucked away, and do not become overused.  It is so quiet that you can hear the rhythmic ringing of the bell at the sheep farmers place down the hill. Yet in places you can see the stone walls that hold the secrets of our past.  In many places we could only see where the trail went by the Yellow Blazes.

Yellow Blazes. Peterborough NH. Photo By Colleen Ann.

Yellow Blazes.
Peterborough NH.
Photo By Colleen Ann.

It was a beautiful afternoon. It was warm, yet the humidity that had hung in the air for much of the Summer was absent. The sun streamed down, hitting the forest floor in splotches. It was a great day to be alive. It is these simple things that you will remember years from now when everything else has faded.

Lone Blueberry. Peterborough NH. Photo By Colleen Ann.

Lone Blueberry.
Peterborough NH.
Photo By Colleen Ann.

Old Stump. Peterborough NH. Photo By Colleen Ann.

Old Stump.
Peterborough NH.
Photo By Colleen Ann.

These quiet untouched places have always called to me. We followed the trail through the woods until we passed into the Wapack National Wildlife Refuge. The woods are so incredibly quiet up there. The trees grow tall, and there is a special quality about the place. Frequent stops were made to gaze at the trees, or interesting features along the way. Here and there we would see signs of Moose, or smaller game. You could hear birds signing, or squirrels calling out. Tiny frogs would cross our path, disappearing as soon as we saw them.

The Journey. Peterborough NH. Photo By Colleen Ann.

The Journey.
Peterborough NH.
Photo By Colleen Ann.

It just reminded me, it is all about the journey.

A Bit of Travel Advice.

Most people flock to the big destinations. To theme parks and bustling cities and national parks. Yet very few people spend the time to really enjoy a place. Slow down, and leave the schedule open. Give yourself the opportunity to wander. So many people rush their vacations, and this has always seemed wrong to me. While I was hiking in Acadia I saw people looking around, but not really seeing.

Lamoine. Photo By Colleen Ann.

Lamoine.
Photo By Colleen Ann.

You need time to get to know a place. You need to give your undivided attention to this place, to let your senses take it in. People have always asked me how I get the ideas for my photos. I look at the smaller details. Many people see the large scene, but overlook the tiny details. To me it has always been the tiny details that make the large scene what it is.

That is what I hope to bring out when I share our Maine trip. I hope I was able to capture all of those tiny details that made this trip so special. I look forward to sharing them with you as well. Maine is such a special place, and i will never be able to fully convey the full experience. Yet I hope my words will inspire you to check out these wonderful places.

Small Details. Photo By Colleen Ann.

Small Details.
Photo By Colleen Ann.

Have you ever been to Maine? If so what parts, and what was your favorite part of your experience?

The Stubborn Nature of Fall Leaves

We enjoy the vivid colors as Fall passes us by. Yet as the colors fade, so does our attention. We move into winter and our attention is drawn away. Onto bigger and better things, onto the long cold nights, and the snow that piles up in drifts outside the door. Yet even with it’s harsh vengeance, Winter is never able to completely obliterate what came before.

Fall Leaves

Fall Leaves. Photo by Colleen Ann.

Every year there are yellow folded leaves still clinging the trees. They stubbornly hang on refusing to let go. They stand strong through the late fall rains. They hang on through the high winds, and the furious blowing snows. Ice clings to them on the coldest days, but still will not let go. They still stubbornly hang on as the days thaw and winters chill begin to ebb away. They hang on until winter finally breaks, only giving way when the new buds for spring start to open.

Beech Leaves. Photo  By Colleen Ann.

Beech Leaves.
Photo By Colleen Ann.

I have always had respect for them. In a tiny display, they show Natures strength. It shows that in even the smallest unobtrusive places nature is tenacious. So every year I look for them, and when I find them I smile. The yellowed leaves that hold on when everything else lets go.

The Outdoors and Life Musings

I was created to roam in wild open places.  As I grow older I find that my patience for staying inside all day grows thin. I cannot bear the thought of spending my life being walled in.

I think that’s why I love these places. Being in New Hampshire puts life into perspective.  I was lucky to grow up in a state that has a wealth of outdoor places, as well as historical sites. New Hampshire is full of lakes rivers and streams. With each passing season, we are given a new set of changes, and I think that is what makes this place so special.  New Hampshire is a place of natural diversity and history, and it has shaped who I have become.

Looking Out Photo By Colleen Ann.

Looking Out
Photo By Colleen Ann.

I have always had an issue with worrying. I let small insignificant things weigh me down. Being outside helps.  The outdoors brings balance into my life. Whether I am photographing rivers, skiing or hiking I feel centered when I am outside. I love examining my relationship with nature. I feel like so much of our daily stress comes form being cooped up constantly. We lead regimented structured lives. Yet there is no time to get out there and explore, and  I really think there is something sad about that.

In The River. Photo By Colleen Ann.

In The Rivers of The White Mountains.
Photo By Colleen Ann.

My goal in life is to spend more time in the mountains.  I have realized that while I am glad for the opportunity, office work is simply not for me. I am a creative personality who needs more to thrive. I  know its going to be a hard path to get to a place where I am successful on this non-traditional road, yet I want to try. I do not want to look back in forty years and wonder where my life went.  I want more than this path offer, all that lays in front of me now is what is next.

The Blue Pool

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It is Winter, and snow falls around us as we make our way back to the parking lot. We have made our way on snowshoes around The Basin. We slowly made our way out, with me trailing behind. I find it hard to leave places like this. I love going into nature, and it is incredibly hard for me to leave. There is always more to see. It is why I linger into the woods, its where I am the happiest. On this day, my boyfriend walks ahead. I look around taking it all in. The woods are silent and I surrounded by the inner peace that eludes me mid week. Stopping, I pause beside the river.

It is a wide open spot near the snowmobile trail. Here the water has managed to stay open in a wide pool. I find myself drawn to it, yet I am careful as I approach. Falling into this water can turn a fun day into an terrible one. There is something different about this pool, and as I draw closer.

In the center of the churning water is a wide spot of deep blue. Growing up around these rivers, I am accustomed to the deep brown of unsettled water. I am used to the clear calm water where you can see all the way to the rocky bottom. Yet this is different. The spot is a bright blue that sits to the top left hand corner. It is a beautiful splash of color on this pale winter day. I sit there and taking it in before turning back to the trail and joining my Boyfriend.

This is why I continue to come, because there is always something different. There is always something unique here. To me nature has her own little surprises, and I love going out to find them.