Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Posts Tagged ‘rock

Seeping cliff

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On June 12th I spent time at the cliff on the west side of Capital of Texas Highway
a little north of the bridge over the Colorado River.

You can see that as water seeps through the cliff it slowly deposits minerals.

Most of the cliff doesn’t seep. In some places the contrast between wet and dry calls attention to itself.

Might these be time- and weather-worn Mayan glyphs?

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 23, 2019 at 4:22 AM

Posted in nature photography

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More from nature on December 25, 2018

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Here are more things I encountered west of Morado Circle on the morning of December 25, 2018.
It’s not unusual to find a hole in the pad of a prickly pear cactus (Opuntia engelmannii).

Look at the complexity in the dense branches of a dead Ashe juniper tree (Juniperus ashei).
Some seed-capsule-bearing limbs of a Mexican buckeye tree (Ungnadia speciosa) reached in from behind.

Why this patch on the top surface of an otherwise dark rock was so light, I don’t know.

The bright fruits of a yaupon tree (Ilex vomitoria) in front of
an Ashe juniper may strike you as appropriate for the date.

And look at the wireweed that had sprouted in the power lines overhead.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

January 28, 2019 at 4:57 AM

Erratic

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You can decide for yourself whether this longtime correspondent of yours is erratic. What’s indisputable is that the Big Rock isolated near Okotoks, Alberta, is an example of a glacial erratic. That phrase tells you that during the last ice age glaciers carried this boulder southward and then dropped it in its current location when the ice melted. There it had stood conspicuously for millennia, unlike anything on the prairie around it, when we visited it a year ago today.

Contrasting with the weighty boulder was a small white feather caught in a spiderweb at the base of the rock.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 28, 2018 at 4:28 AM

More of the world below

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More visual notes from the underground in New Mexico’s Carlsbad Caverns National Park on June 14th.

It took aeons for an inorganic process, dripping water, to deposit the minerals that built up these intricate formations. Nevertheless, don’t their tops remind you of the branching growth patterns seen in a living organism like broccoli?

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 24, 2017 at 4:40 AM

Some colorful geology on a small scale

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Nothing in Austin is going to compare to the Badlands of South Dakota. Sorry, Austin, that’s just how it is. Still, we have some much smaller geological formations here that warrant a look. One is a long limestone slab that arches up and then out over a creek in my Great Hills neighborhood. Historically, of course, aeons of water flowing through the creek eroded the limestone to create the overhang. The back wall, which I don’t think ever gets direct sunlight, stays rather dark even during the brightest part of the day. When I went there on June 29th, I stood facing the wall and used flash to reveal the colors and patterns of the always damp and sometimes wet stone.

No more than a hundred feet to the right of the formations shown here are the mud dauber wasp tubes some of you may remember from five years ago. Two years after that, I showed something that wasn’t a tuft of hair on the underside of the overhang.

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 9, 2017 at 4:54 AM

Nebraska like Antarctica

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Okay, there are times when Nebraska gets really cold, but not that cold. No, it’s not temperature I have in mind: don’t you think that the outline of these lichens is like that of Antarctica? Following in the footsteps of Amundsen, I strode to the top of Scott’s Bluff National Monument on May 28th and metaphorically planted my photographic flag there.

If you’d like a much closer look at a portion of these lichens, click to expand this excerpt:

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 21, 2017 at 5:00 AM

Another unconventional view of a national monument

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On the morning of May 30th, two days before bedeviling Devil’s Tower, we’d rushed to Mt. Rushmore, where along with more-conventional pictures I took this one looking up at a portion of the famous monument from a cleft between boulders.

But this is a nature photography blog, so here, likewise from Mt. Rushmore, is the different yet somehow similar white of a truncated trunk sculpted by nature rather than people.

Standing Tree Trunk Remains White and Broken 2538B

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 13, 2017 at 5:00 AM

“Did you get any closer to the Tower?”

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Yesterday Gallivanta asked in a comment whether we got any closer during our June 1st visit to Devil’s Tower than the place where I took the atypical and rather distant view that appeared last time. I put together today’s post to answer her question.

Below is a photograph taken from a different spot that zooms in on the polygonal columns of rock near the top of Devil’s Tower.

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 12, 2017 at 4:55 AM

Close encounters of the northeastern Wyoming kind

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On June 1st I finally made it to a place I’d been wanting to see even before another Steven S. turned it into the setting for the finale of a popular 1977 science fiction movie. The place I’m referring to, of course, is Devil’s Tower.* This geological landmark stands alone of its kind, towering more than 800 ft. above the land for tens of miles around it in northeastern Wyoming.

You can find a zillion pictures on the Internet showing this looming structure. I took close to 200 myself. I’ve chosen to give you an unconventional view that plays up the orange-brown rocks and earth in parts of the park, while ponderosa pine trees and wispy clouds add their share.

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* As you recently read in these pages, some government agencies have decided to throw away apostrophes in geographic names. Not I.

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

July 11, 2017 at 4:49 AM

Alibates flint

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I’d be remiss if I mentioned the Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument, as I did last time, without showing you a piece of that flint.

And below is a different take on orange and brown at that same site in the northern reaches of the Texas Panhandle.

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

June 22, 2017 at 4:43 AM

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