THE GREAT OUTDOORS, NEW ENGLAND VERSION – Marilyn Armstrong

A Photo a Week Challenge: The Great Outdoors

We live in rural Massachusetts, but it’s hard to think of it as “the great outdoors.”

There’s something a bit enclosed about New England. Trees and stone fences. No big open areas, but smaller sections. Fields, valleys, rivers, lakes … and an amazing Atlantic coast. We are less grand than the west but cozier. Greener.

Less grand than the west, but friendlier. And we get more than enough snow to make up the difference!

The cows in the meadow
The last of the woods, now bare
Vermont mountains
Roaring dam in Blackstone
Photo: Garry Armstrong
Photo: Garry Armstrong
River Bend in early winter
Photo: Garry Armstrong
Photo: Garry Armstrong –Winter at home

 

RAGTAG DAILY PROMPT- THE BRIDGE

RDP Tuesday: Bridge


There is a small stone bridge over the Blackstone River where it meets the canal and become two pieces. I photograph it frequently in pretty much every season except deep winter when it’s inaccessible due to snow.

I love that little bridge. Stone bridge. Actually, it’s Route 16 on its way to Milford then Boston then even further out towards Lynn. One long route.

It’s not just a road … a route. It consists of many roads and I don’t know what they call it here, but it’s definitely Route 16!

Bridge over the Blackstone
Photo: Garry Armstrong
Stone Bridge over the Blackstone

Stone bridge over the Blackstone River and Canal

A RIVER OF MAGICAL PLACES: WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE – Marilyn Armstrong

Weekly Photo Challenge: Magical Places


The Blackstone Valley Historical Corridor is a series of connected parks in and around the Blackstone River Valley. There are dozens of little, medium, and large parks.

The parks surround many dams, ponds, and lakes. There are bicycle paths, picnic tables, even a few areas where you can swim and many where you can kayak.

Everywhere there are benches, facing the falls, the lakes. My particular favorite place is on the Mumford River (a branch of the Blackstone) in the middle of Uxbridge.

October on the Mumford – 2013
October on the Mumford – 2018
On the Mumford – 2017

I love living in a town in which a river runs through the middle of town. Like Paris with the Seine, or London on the Thames.

Manchaug dam on the Blackstone – 2018
Roaring Dam – Blackstone on the Blackstone River – 2017
Blackstone Gorge – Photo: Garry Armstrong

I have a lot of pictures of the dams, many taken in the fall because it’s the best time for pictures. Maybe not this year, but most years.

WILDFLOWERS AND SOME AUTUMN LEAVES – Marilyn Armstrong

FOTD – November 4, 2018


Photos: Garry & Marilyn Armstrong

We had a serious wind and rain storm last night and this morning. Big limbs all over the driveway. Watching the oaks wave in the wind … which is actually kind of eerie.

Those oaks are big (tall!) trees. When they fall, they take down a lot of stuff with them. Watching them move with the wind is a bit scary.

Wild asters and a big bee

But so far, so good. We just lost a lot of branches which Garry tossed into the woods. The driveway was effectively blocked.

Women by the river – Photo: Garry Armstrong
Photo: Garry Armstrong

In the course of events, most of the trees are bare. Tomorrow is supposed to be nice, but Monday and thereafter? Who knows? More wind, more rain, and the rivers are beginning to crest. It was bound to happen.

The last branch

And Garry’s best shot of October, introducing THE SQUIRREL!

Photo: Garry Armstrong – Gray squirrel by the Blackstone

WATERLILIES ON THE RIVER – Marilyn Armstrong

We may not have had much in the way of an autumn, but the water lilies have been blooming like crazy. Everywhere. All different kinds of lilies.

Water lilies along the Blackstone
Wide lily pads
In the bend of the river
At the pond in Whitinsville
Autumn lily pads
Flowering lily pads
Flowers in the water.

WHICH WAY DOWN BY THE RIVER – Garry and Marilyn Armstrong

Which Way Challenge: October 4, 2018

And finally, it stopped raining. The sun came out, the sky was a rich, bright blue and I can see the tree changing. If the weather holds, by the middle of next week, we should be a marvel of autumnal splendor.

Walk to the Blackstone Canal
The path along the canal and the little bridge to River Bend
Little bridge and dock

Right now, it’s the maples that are brilliant. They are always the first. More will come. The majority of the color is along waterways which is also where you most typically find batches of maple trees.

Country road, autumn trees
Maple on the lawn in October

We went out today and took a lot of pictures. There are so many, I’m not even sure where to start working on them, so I guess it will be a few at a time for various photo challenges.

Resting by the river

Now I’ll go see what I can find for Which Way!

RIGHT TIME, RIGHT PLACE WITH GREAT LIGHT! – Marilyn Armstrong

Weekly Photo Challenge: Right Place, Right Time!


Right place, right time is the name of the photography game. That and the right light. Most of my best photographs were a combination of having a camera when I needed it and being where something happened worth commemorating.

From sunsets to laughter, it’s always about being there and having a camera ready. I always keep a camera with me and even though it weighs down my bag, you just never know what out of nowhere, suddenly, there’s a great picture.

Herons are pretty good about standing still while you take their picture. Unless you startle them.

Waiting for me in the river, one Great Blue Heron

The thing was, I didn’t have a long lens on the camera or even with me, so instead of zooming, I had to creep up on him.

More heron!

The ground was mucky and muddy, but I decided I could cope with mud because I wanted that bird. Except I was wearing open-back shoes and when I tried to clamber up from the bank of the river, my shoes stuck in the mud. My feet moved on, but my shoes stayed put. That was when I discovered I could not climb up the hill without my shoes. So I sat down to wait. I figured eventually, Garry would wander by and we’d work it out.

Which we did.

Don’t wear open back shoes in the mud by the river. And it’s always good to have a long lens with you.