Tag: Nikon Z6ii

Pine Trees

We are staying at the edge of the Riverside National Forest, just outside of Spokane, WA. The Spokane River runs through it. Tall pine trees and other plants – flowers, bushes – line the banks of the river. Some people have houses along the shoreline. In high summer, the dusty, dry smell of pine needles fills the air. So do a few bugs – I got a nasty bite from some kind of fly and it hurt! Despite the bugs, it is always a pleasure to walk through a forest and be in the countryside.

Grain Elevator

Grain Elevator Along the Columbia

As we wend our way to Wisconsin by car, we are seeing a lot of the West – the non-burning part so far – and this is a grain elevator (I think) taken as we drove by it. To one side we had barren hills, an occasional tree, the freeway in front of us, and to the other side, the broad expanses of the Columbia River in Oregon. A building was rare in this barren, beautiful land.

Over the Fence

Hanging Fruit
I went out for a walk shortly before the sunset, camera in hand, to catch the first of the spring flowers and to get the flowering pears in bloom before they fade. This lemon tree lives a few houses away, down the hill, and always hangs some fruit over the fence. I find it rather charming and cheerful – and luckily our neighbor provides us with lemons so I don’t feel any temptation to swipe . . .

Just After the Rains

After the Rains

Most of December 2021 saw rain and cold weather – at last! It doesn’t change the drought situation here in California, but it does help. I hope the bits of green here will soon spread over the hills, which have been dead and brown for far too long. Rain in the single-digit percentage points shows up on the weather forecast, but with the climate situation it is impossible to predict anything.

This is from the Chumash Trial area near my house. It is the same area where I spotted the Acorn Woodpecker in yesterday’s photo. I love this area because of the wonderful oak trees down this trail. Sadly, many were lost in the Woolley Fire (I think that is the one) from a few years ago that swept through this area.

One of the fun things about digital images, or digitized film images, is the playing around in post and creating presets. This one I rather like – it gives a sense of the softness that new growth brings to the world. Spring is coming, early of course in my neck of the woods, and the rains are the reason for the rainy season.

Etc.

Acorn Woodpecker

Acorn Woodpecker

Finally a day that is freezing (for SoCal!) or pouring cats and dogs . . . I managed to get out for a hike today down Chumash Trail nearby. It is filled with old-growth oak trees, and it has been a bit since I have been there as the plague and other things limited some of my activities. It felt so good to be outdoors at last!

The trail itself is easy, mostly flat. The problem is that you really cannot go scrambling around the hills as poison oak is not your friend. This can limit where you decide to wander.

As it is midweek, no one was out. But birds and bees and gnats were – and so were a small herd of deer that went bounding through the wood. Sadly, I wasn’t quick enough to catch them on my camera. But, I was lucky to catch this woodpecker, high up in a telephone pole full of acorns cached there by the local acorn woodpeckers!

Woodpeckers are pretty hard to miss – tat, tat, tat! I had no idea what kind this one was at all, so I followed this ink to learn a bit more. I didn’t know there are 15 kinds in my neighborhood. What made this particular one interesting was there was no red to be easily found on his head. His position hid the top of his head, which is where the small bit of red is to be found on the bird. Most woodpeckers have a very noticeable red top or breast or throat, but this one was not at all the usual ones I have been able to see. I had my Nikon z6ii with the excellent 24-200 lens attached, and I had to be quick to catch this guy – even though I was far below, he was canny enough to realize 2 legs, human, time to flee!

I may be wrong. but I am pretty sure this guy is an Acorn Woodpecker . . . he just wasn’t inclined to show me who he really is.