Thursday, February 16, 2017

Forest and Frost

My most memorable hikes can be classified as 'Shortcuts that Backfired'.
~ Edward Abbey

Early in January, my friend, Susan suggested a hike through the trails of Northumberland County Forest - about forty-five minutes from home. Below are my photos from that day, along with a few frosty window images as they appeared over the course of that week.

frosty morning
The day started off sunny and very cold. The frost on my window seemed eager to greet the morning sun.

cloud mountain4
As we headed south, we wondered if we were in for some interesting weather. A huge wall of clouds appeared like a small mountain range, silently punching its way into the sky. It was a pretty cold day (-14C/7F) with an even colder windchill. You can see how icy the fields were.

xcountry trail2
We weren't sure exactly where we were going to end up and once we arrived, we had difficulty finding the hiking trails anywhere near a logical place to park. So we kind of broke the rules and walked along the cross-country paths instead. The snow was very hard - icy, even and so we we knew we weren't going to be ruining any smooth skiing trails for anyone who came behind us.

frost and droplets
The sun was strong but lacked the power to coax the frost from my windows at home. A January deep freeze is undaunted by the vague, warming rays of a faraway spring.

xcountry trail susan
Susan led the way and when faced with a fork in the road, wisely avoided the path less taken. And yet - that didn't stop us from getting a little lost.

xcountry trail3
Trails were not as clearly or logically marked as we thought and so we found ourselves zigging instead of zagging a time or two. One of those zig brought us up a steady incline overlooking much of the forest. You can see what we assumed was Lake Ontario in the distance.

beech tree backlit2
The sun shone brightly from behind the hardy leaves of a beech tree.

frosty blue
Meanwhile, back at home, fairies celebrated their alone time by dancing and flying across my window panes.

pine cone marker
A little pine cone branch set in the snow suggested that someone else might have thought it wise to mark their path.

xcountry trail
After a couple of head-scratching decisions, we finally felt certain we were on our last stretch of the hike and headed back to the parking spot. One day, I'll have to tell you how my friend Carol Anne and I managed to get lost in a paddleboat...

Drive by shooting-
Heading back home, Susan was driving so I took the opportunity to snap a few "drive-by shootings." There's something about an old barn that tends to catch my eye.

frosty tips
While we motored along and explored the Ontario countryside, icy feathers teetered and swayed while exploring the terrain of a frosted window.

drive by shooting
A brief sighting of an old tree and aging structure will live on in a digital capture as we zoomed by.

drive by shooting3
There's a lot going on in this image despite my having noticed very little of it when I clicked the shutter. The body of water is Rice Lake. I'm thinking that this place had a dock or two to dismantle and pile up for the winter, and probably a few boats to move to storage. Aside from some trailers, I see a barbecue, several propane tanks, a wheelbarrow, a bench looking out over the water, a bird feeder hanging near the bench, a weather vane on the small shed and a faux owl just to the right of the permanent section of the dock. The sign tells me that this place is part of the cottage and boat rental spot called Adventure Bay in Gore's Landing.

night window view
Nightfall also offers a moody view through my third floor window, though this one was taken back in December as you can tell by the Christmas tree lights.

I will be back before too long with more snowy pics, as our winter persists.


William Kendall said...

Beautiful wintery shots! It's amazing what frost can do on windows.

joeh said...

You should have left bread crumbs along the way.

Marie Smith said...

Lovely window pane designs by nature.

Love your adventures through the woods and countryside. The last photo is gorgeous.

Linda aka Crafty Gardener said...

Good for both of you for venturing out on a cold day. Your frosty window photos are fantastic.

Susan Kane said...

Your photo journey was exquisite!

messymimi said...

Such a pretty walk! Even though i don't much like cold, i'm not sure i could resist tagging along if i were given the chance.

Birdie said...

It was only a few years back that I saw my windows frost up like that. It doesn't get cold enough. When I saw it I was baffled at what had happened! It took me a bit to figure it out. I am pretty sure I took a picture. I might have even posted a picture on my blog at the time.
I'm glad your not still lost. xo

stephen Hayes said...

Your pictures are beautiful, even though they make me want to pull on a coat.

Red said...

I wish I'd been able to walk with you. I walk through our native parks here.

L. D. said...

Your photos of winter are wonderful. I like the drive by shots idea. I usually blur them though but it is fun to take a shot at it as you pass by. Frost is fascinating.

Linda at To Behold The Beauty said...

Your images of the frosty windows are absolutely stunning. You have my abiding admiration for venturing out on a snowy hike on such a cold winter day. The reference to Carol Anne and getting lost in a paddle boat has me smiling. I love Carol Anne stories. And, ah, if you only knew how many times I've made Doug turn the car around so I could go back for a shot of an owl, only to realize after sneaking up on it that it was a "faux" owl.

Ruth Hiebert said...

WOW! You have shown us so much beauty. I cannot decide which ones I like better, the outdoor scenes or the frosty ones.Stunning images.

Out on the prairie said...

Real pretty, you have treasures

Lady Fi said...

Gorgeous winter scenes. Love that last golden shot.

DJan said...

Those feathery ice pictures are simply mesmerizing. And the rest of your adventure was fun, too, although that temperature seems really cold to me! :-)

Anvilcloud said...

Nice little trip for you and us. The last pic has great light.

Karen said...

I love getting out and about in Northumberland County! Sometimes when I drive southwest on 115, I come over a rise and there will be a big cloud bank dead ahead. I know the next bend in the road will reveal the lake.

Daryl said...

i keep wishing i could capture frost on our windows but then i realize its got to be a lot colder for that to happen .. so i will enjoy your photos instead

Barbara said...

BRRR! But so beautiful, especially your frosty windows. Now I'm wondering how you can find your way through a snowy forest that looks the same in every direction, but got lost in paddle boats!!!

Linda said...

Yes, that was definitely the time and situation to NOT take the path less traveled. I would have been a bit distressed at not knowing for sure how to get back to the parking lot. I've had a "been there/done that" experience, but it was less cold and no snow.

I love the frosty window panes. Mother Nature and Jack Frost combine to make some pretty artwork.

Shammickite said...

You need new windows!!!!!
There are lots of trails like that near here but recently I've avoided walking in the forest as the trails are so icy and I'm scared of falling. I'll be back hiking the trails when the ice has all melted. But then I'll have to navigate mud. Oh well, at least if I slip it will be a soft landing.

ellen abbott said...

love the frost photos, well, all of them really. especially the pine cone trail marker.

Polly said...

Stunning beautiful pictures.

Unknown said...

Love the outdoor shots but am again totally blown away by the frost pictures! Would ALMOST make me want to live somewhere where it got that cold! But thanks to you I don't have to.

Mage said...


yaya said...

Thanks for taking me on your walk! Your pics are amazing as always. I love the sunny, blue skies but it still looked very cold! You captured a lovely winter's day!

The Furry Gnome said...

Love the frost pictures!

Jenn Jilks said...

Whoops! Not fun being lost. I was lost in the wetland in January. I didn't tell JB!!!
The thing about walking on the snow, though, is you can always retrace you steps. I loathe doing that, though. I want new sights!