Monday, July 07, 2014

The Williston 4th of July

There is magic in small town July 4th festivities.  Williston has a lot of that magic and this year's 4th of July Parade and Frog Jumping contest were great fun for all.  Its been fun over the years to watch our boys grow up from being the little guys on the side of the road snatching candy to carrying the American Flag in the Boy Scout Color Guard this year.

These are my favorite shots from the day.  To see a lot more photos from this year, click here.

Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade photo by Dave Schmidt Boy Scout Troop 692 l
Boy Scout Troop 692 leads the parade.  I think I know that kid holding the American Flag. 
Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade photo by Dave Schmidt
Doggy Day Care's customers get in on the parade.
 
Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade photo by Dave Schmidt
US Representative Peter Welch

Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade photo by Dave Schmidt
He bought it new.

Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade photo by Dave Schmidt
A lot of excitement for a free water bottle.

Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade photo by Dave Schmidt
The Imported Car Center's copilot.
Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade photo by Dave Schmidt
Former US Marines.

Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade photo by Dave Schmidt
Risking life and limb for candy.

Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade

Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade

Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade
Candy Crush

Williston, Vermont 4th of July Parade
In need of more candy.

Williston 4th of July Parade
Williston fire chief's personal ride.

Williston 4th of July Parade
Chief


Williston 4th of July frog jumping contest willie the jumping frog bill skiff
The wonderful Bill Skiff, hosting the frog jumping contest for more than 20 years, now has his own children's book starring Willie the Jumping Frog.  More on Willie here and here

Williston 4th of July frog jumping contest
Brayden's prize frog

Williston 4th of July frog jumping contest
Zoe gets her frog flying

Williston 4th of July frog jumping contest
Javier, (far right) an exchange student from Spain, definitely enjoyed his frog jumping experience, as did Joe, Doug and Ian.

Williston 4th of July frog jumping contest
Asa

Williston 4th of July frog jumping contest
By the time I took this, the crowd had dropped from the throngs at the start of the contest

frogs
Before being released back into the wild, we did a little frog photo shoot.  This was shot with an extension tube on the lens to allow for extreme close-up.

Faces and frogs from years past.  You can get a print of this here.
To see a lot more photos from this year, click here.

Click a year to see more images:  2013, 2012, 2011 and more...

Prints of any image always available.  Contact me dsphoto(at)comcast.net


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Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Balancing Stones of the Bolton Potholes

Bolton Potholes is one of the most popular swimming holes in Vermont.  It's an amazing place and to watch kids throw back flips into the potholes carved out of the stone over centuries is a lot of fun on a hot summer day.  On this day I headed just above the Pots where those not looking to risk their lives for the crowds might retreat to, but on this day there was no one to be found, including those that had built these balancing stones.  As it is still only late spring and the warmest weather is yet to come, there were not as many balancing stones as one would find late in the year. 

bolton balancing stones

bolton balancing stones

bolton vermont balancing stones


bolton vermont mountain stream

bolton vermont balancing stones


bolton vermont balancing stones

Bolton Pots swimming hole Vermont


Prints of any image always available.  Contact me dsphoto(at)comcast.net


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Monday, June 02, 2014

Kayaking the LaPlatte River

Spring is always the best time to paddle the LaPlatte River in Shelburne, VT.  With Lake Champlain still swollen from spring runoff, you can paddle into usually unreachable places and cut corners in the normally meandering river.  The green ash, silver maple and black willow trees that love the annual flooding create an endless sea of reflections in every direction.  The trees that arch over the river make a kaleidoscopic tunnel to paddle down.

This 225 acre marsh near the mouth of river into Lake Champlain is a protected area with some help from The Nature Conservancy who has a little writeup about it here.  Access is easy by using the boat launch at the mouth of the river on Lake Champlain right on Bay Road.  Once launched, turn right and paddle under the Bay Rd. bridge.  Once your round the first corner, the rest of civilization disappears quickly and the sounds of birds and a thousand frogs take over.  There is at least one beaver family in the area that will usually let you know it's their turf with a good slap of a tail.

For photos, the challenge is to keep the kayak still enough while still moving forward so the glassy smooth surface is not disturbed in the direction of the camera.  These photos were all taken with a small Sony NEX6 camera in a high contrast black-n-white mode then post processed in Adobe Lightroom to pull up the shadows and add some sharpening.  Most had some localize dodging and burning as well.

There are duck eggs for anyone that makes it to the end.  Photos from a couple years back can be seen here.

The tunnel of bent trees over the main channel of the river



Silver maple tree bark




The view looking west very near the mouth of the riven into Lake Champlain
Here are your duck eggs, nestled into the crook of an old tree



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Friday, May 30, 2014

Kayaking Lewis Creek





This was my first visit to Lewis Creek near Ferrisburgh, VT.  There is a fishing access off of Long Point Road near the mouth of the creek in Lake Champlain.  With the water level in the lake still higher than normal due to spring runoff, there is little current in the creek and paddling upstream is not an issue.  With much of the low lying areas still flooded and incredibly calm water it made for some beautiful reflections.  Once again, I couldn't choose between color or black and white so some of these appear both ways.   


  
















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