Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Cats Love Christmas Also...

Sorry today's post was a little late, I got on this morning at work to find no photographs, I was sure I had something ready and uploaded last night. After getting home this morning I found out I did have the post ready but never uploaded it for a scheduled time.

These are our three cats Kyle, Cappy and Alex in order of the photos. They have all been on the site before but never at the same time. They love Christmas also mostly jumping into the open boxes or hiding under the wrapping paper. They also love to sleep under the trees, but they never get into trouble or break anything. I guess we got lucky there. They are all family members but they each gravitate to a certain person, Cappy is all Linda's kitty, Kyle is Shane's and Alex is my little girl.

This being the last post for the year I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and a safe and Happy New Year. See you all next year.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

New Harrisburg Tower 1...

Harrisburg received their new tower truck right before Thanksgiving, it is scheduled to go in service tomorrow morning so I thought I would introduce to the kids and adults that are still children at heart and like fire trucks, plus I didn't know what else to post.

The rig is a 2008 Pierce Arrow XT with a 75 foot aerialscope boom remounted from our old 1989 CF Mack tower. I was spending the morning out doing driver training when I realized that a great place to photograph it would be in front of the old Reily Station 10 now used as our fire museum. The weather was gloomy but it is not my rig so I may not get another chance to photograph it in this spot. The city is also getting a new engine with the same cab that will run out of my firehouse, you can expect to see it soon.

Monday, December 29, 2008

The Vigilant Hose Company, Shippensburg, Pa...

The Vigilant Hose Company has been decorating their fire station for many decades. The past few years I have not had the opportunity to get to Shippensburg to photograph the building for one reason or another. This Christmas Eve I finally had the chance. The conditions were not the best as it was raining all evening, but when it turned to a drizzle I set up the tripod to get some photos. My luck ran out three photos into the shoot, one of their young guys pulled up and parked on the street along the yellow line right in front of the building, I waited but he never returned to his car so this is the best I got. Maybe I will try again next year.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Stupid Is As Stupid Does...

It is amazing the stupid things you see people do at National Parks. I guess they forget the first part of wild animal is WILD. These are some of the most unpredictable and dangerous animals you can run into and they just walk right up to him and spoiled photo opportunities for those of us that respect the wildlife and play by the rules. This incident was even worse than the photo shows, but I will not go into that right now. I am sure there are plenty of you out there that look at this site that have run into similar events.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas Everyone...

Good morning everyone and Merry Christmas. I thought I would change things up a bit today and post someone else's photograph. I can only assume that my mother took this picture with a Kodak camera. This is from a Christmas past, 1965 that is. I know by looking at my profile photo you all thought I was maybe mid twenties at the most, I get that all the time, I look very young for my age. Remember it is Christmas so be nice.

During this Christmas we lived in an apartment on Burd Street in Shippensburg. The girl behind me is my sister Elizabeth, I could not tell you what she got that year but you can see Santa was very good to me. By the way I still have the pedal fire truck, it is in my office in excellent condition. Funny thing is 43 years later and I am still playing on fire trucks, they are just a little larger now.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Maybe This Year I Can Pull The Sleigh...

This is not the same Elk as Friday's post and it was shot in a different area of Yellowstone. Had I paid attention to the weather I would have switched these two post around as cold as it is this morning, Brrrrrrrrrr!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Camp Charlie...

Does anyone else out their that does a daily photo blog ever get tired of doing it? Well I am, sometimes I tire of looking for a photo to work up because I have not shot anything new for awhile, I tire of working on the photo and I just become blank with what to say. Maybe it is the time of the year, maybe it is just one of the times I get down on my work, I really don't know but lately it has been getting harder and harder to do this.

I don't have a huge audience but I do have a decent following so I would really hate to take a break now and loose what I have worked the last year to get. With that said I will post a photo everyday this week but I plan on doing so without much if any text.

Camp Charlie is located on the Lower Horse Valley Road in Franklin County Pennsylvania. It was built in 1965 by my father and grandfather. After my grandfathers passing my uncle purchased his half of the cabin. This was once a thriving hunting camp, now it is more a get away and relaxation place than a hunting camp. I posted this today since we are starting the second week a deer season here in Pa. and also because it is the only thing I had ready and handy at the moment. With any luck I will get the opportunity to keep this cabin in the family for many more decades to come between my son and I. Of course it would not be for hunting, but for fishing and photography.

Friday, December 5, 2008

A Little Late For Picking Corn...

Another one of those days when I can think of nothing to say. This photograph was taken this past Sunday at a farm behind my house. I was coming home from work on this dreary morning when I spotted these sitting close to the road they just looked like they were screaming for me to photograph them. Pressed for time since I was picking up my son and heading to a toy and train show I grabbed him and my camera and headed off. A couple of quick shots from the truck window and away we went. Every year I say I am going to go out and photograph the fall colors and the farmers out working but in never seems to happen. Maybe one of these years I will follow through with it.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

More Hershey Bears...

I really didn't want to do three days in a row of the Hershey Bears but I had these ready so, I am anyways. The Bears and Caps just keep winning. Last week the Bears sent four players up to the Caps because of injuries but they are still winning. This is a scheduled post but at the time that I am typing it the Bears have more wins, more points and 26 more goals than the next closest AHL team. All this with seven kids just 20 years old, I might have underwear that old. The Caps also keep winning with the Bears filling in their lines this just may be my year. A Stanley and Calder Cup, that would be great.

The top photo was taken a few days before these guys got called up to the Caps. The #21 Graham Mink and #17 Chris Bourque were both called up last week, #26 Quintin Laing spent the last third of last season playing for the Caps and helping them reach the playoff by blocking shot after shot. The second photo is a close of of Mink. The video was taken October 26 at the Giant center it last 27 seconds and shows Laing scoring a goal after the face off.

No hockey on Friday, I am hoping to post something recently photographed.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Hockey Family...

As I said yesterday we are a hockey family, so I thought I would put up some of my family at a Bears game. The first photograph is of the scoreboard in the Giant Center, home of the Bears. Each game for the last two seasons they put this photo up called the nut of the game. People get up and act like nuts while the camera men pan the crowd and put some up on this screen. The reason I post it here is because it is my son on the left and his friend Dillon on the right. The photo was taken a few years ago when the Bears were playing a playoff game. Last season when the Caps made it to the playoffs it was a photo on their home page.

The other photo was taken two Saturday's ago at a home game, that is my wife Linda and son Shane during a stop in play, we set in the fourth row close the Bears bench. With the team we have this year it looks like we will be watching hockey into June again this year. GO BEARS.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Let's Go Bears, Let's Go Bears!!

After all the wildlife photographs it is time to slip some hockey photos into the mix. For those that have followed this blog for sometime now you know my family is a big hockey family. We have season tickets to the AHL Hershey Bears and travel to Washington to see our NHL team the Capitols. The Bears and Caps are in first place at the time I am posting this, I do scheduled post to make life easier. The Bears have also been a scoring machine already out scoring the next closest team by 26 goals. The other week we watched them blow out Binghampton 9-0and just this past Saturday they did it again in a 9-0 rout of the Phantoms. The photo is of Greg Amadio, Greg is playing his first season with the Bears coming over from Binghampton this year, Saturday he scored two goals, one short handed for his first prefessional multi goal game. Greg bring toughness to the team and also plays good hard hockey. The video was taken with my phone at the November 15TH game against the Philadelphia Phantoms. Hershey was losing the game 3-2 in the third period before scoring five goals to take the win. The video last 1 minute and 13 seconds and is Grant McNeil dishing out some punishment. Unfortunately Grant fractured his wrist and will be out for awhile.

Monday, December 1, 2008

A Firehouse Thanksgiving...

Being a fireman means spending time away from home during the holidays. We are not alone in working the holidays many others like police officers, ambulance workers, Doctors, nurses and military personnel also work holidays. After working a few you get used to it, except for Christmas. This Thanksgiving my platoon worked the daylight shift. It ended up being a busy day running eight calls during our daylight, all oven fires or cooking related.

Starting the Thanksgiving after the September 11, 2001 attacks on US soil a tradition began in the Fire Bureau. The Kesher Israel Congregation began cooking a Thanksgiving meal for the on duty shifts. The congregation shows up shortly before noon to feed the on duty platoon leaving enough food to feed the night shift when they come on at 4:00 p.m.

Part of the contingent is the Rosenberg family. Some of us have gotten to know them and watch their boys grow each year. A few years ago the middle son earned his Eagle Scout and my truck partner and I attended his Eagle court of honor. This year I learned that the youngest son is awaiting his board of review for Eagle. As an Eagle Scout myself I enjoy attending the ceremony, knowing the commitment it takes to earn the rank and plan on attending his court of honor when it takes place. We greatly appreciate the effort the congregation puts forth for us on this day and know that it comes from their hearts.

Part of doing this is seeing the press show up at the firehouse, some of us because we have been around awhile are able to avoid them, but we do not mind sacrificing others for the camera. In the top photo Leon Cliatt (Wagon 3) does an interview from the drivers seat of the tower for channel 21 news. Not wanting this to go unnoticed I had to snap a few photos. The second photo is channel 8 interviewing El Shakkur (Tower 3) about his hot sauce. We have another tradition in the Fire Bureau, when a firefighter gets their photo in the paper or show up on the news they owe a us a beer. I hope to reap the rewards later this month after the local meeting, so bring money guys.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Yes I know Three Days In A Row..

Yes I know I posted these critters three days in a row, but I had the photos ready and didn't know witch ones to use so I thought I would use them all. I promise no more muskrats, unless I go shoot them again and get something better. I said everything already so I really don't know what else to say except look at those claws. I hope you enjoyed them and I promised something different on Monday.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

More Muskrats...

I guess I should start today's post wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. I am working today so lets hope no one burns their turkey in the city this year.

As I said yesterday more muskrats photographs were coming along some information on this small mammal. The muskrat is a large rodent with a long skinny tail and dark brown or blackish fur.

Muskrats lead a semi-aquatic life like a beaver but do not build dams. Their houses are either cone-shaped piles of mud and vegetation or burrows in the bank. These guys lived in the bank. They are most active at night and during the dark time periods or rainy days. They eat aquatic vegetation and roots, especially cattails. I did not see any cattails in the area but they were eating plenty of the greens along the water.

An interesting note about the muskrat is that they can close their lips behind their front teeth so they can gnaw underwater.

No sky watch for me this Thursday, I have to work daylight and since it is Thanksgiving I am having family over so I would not have the time to visit other sites.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Pleasant Surprise...

I set out Sunday morning on a road trip on the country roads in my area looking for wildlife or anything interesting to shoot. As usual nothing creative was coming out of me and I was finding no wildlife to photograph. I was traveling along a small stream that I have shot in the past when I noticed a pleasant surprise, muskrats. When I first spotted them it was the one in the first photo. Only seeing a muskrat for the second time in my life I was not really sure what I was seeing at first. It wasn't until I noticed the tail that I realized they were muskrats (thanks to Salty's muskrat post earlier this year). There was four of them in a small area eating and swimming around. I spent about a half an hour there firing away before they tired of me and retreated to their den. Stay tuned for more muskrat photos this week including a little about this small mammal.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

More Bison Tuesday...

I hope you noticed that I stayed close to the original title I came up with yesterday. Hey if I couldn't come up with anything then what would make you think I could come up with something now. Speaking of coming up with something, a few months after I started the blog I realized it would not be easy to keep come up with photos all the time to post on here. What I am starting to realize now is that it is even harder to come up with something to say all the time. See if I ramble on enough like this I don't need to say much more.

These two photographs were taken the same day as the ones in yesterday's post. This was after they exited the water and climbed the hill forcing us back and across the road to a safer area. Once out in the field the younger bison decided it was time to play. They are fun to watch when they start doing this as the do not just run but seem to jump around more. The second photo is of a very large bison that didn't follow the group, he chose the same path we took. Taking his good old time he just slowly walked towards us like the world was his (and I wasn't going to tell him any different). As he crossed the road it became obvious he planned to walk right where I stood shooting away. Needless to say I quickly moved to the other side of the large vehicle parked next to me and looked for my next hiding spot before turning my attention back to him. He walked right past and into the field watching his herd and grazing.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Bison Monday...

Like the title? Yes I know real original, but I really didn't know what to type in today. That seems to be happening more and more these days. The photo and video were taken on October 2, 2008 in Yellowstone. These buffalo were crossing the Yellowstone river and it is always great to capture any of the animals in the water. Like the other videos this was shot with my cell phone, it only last 17 seconds, but if you have never seen the bison in the water take a look.

The sad thing about uploading the videos onto blogger is they always come out this size. After I download them from my phone to the computer and watch them they are much larger, making for a better picture. The other bad part is I can only make them load to the left and not centered like the photos.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Something To Shoot...

I really didn't know what title to use for today's photographs so I settled on "Something to shoot". These were taken the other Sunday when I was out searching for whitetail deer in rut. I only found the two deer that I posted on November 12TH, but I was out to enjoy the Pennsylvania countryside and shoot some photos and that is just what I did.

Hawks have become a common site around our area, photographing them is a different story. Often they are to far away, bad lighting or just want no part of me getting close. This guy was sitting on a pole along the road, not best of settings for shooting but he was nice enough to hang around long enough for me to get a few shots. Now for those of you out there that are knowledgeable on these subjects, what type of hawk is this? I assumed it was not a red tail because I seen a red tail a little later in the day and his tail was red.

The second photo is something I really didn't expect to be shooting, a rainbow trout. I was walking the creek bank looking for birds when I noticed this trout swimming up stream looking for food. If you look close his head is coming out of the water about to bite into the white object just in front of him.

Not the photos I expected to come back with that day but it was a beautiful day in the country and I will take any kind of wildlife.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Shades Of Grey...

Welcome once again to Sky Watch Friday, for me this is my 13TH edition of sky watch. I would like to thank Klaus, Sandy, Ivar, Wren, Fishing Guy and Louise for the great site and wonderful time. Don't forget to click the sky watch link and visit many more great sky watch photographs from around the world.

Today's photo comes from the Grand Tetons, this was one of only a couple of days with clouds during my two plus weeks in the area. Funny thing is before I really got into photography I wanted sunny skies and no clouds when I was on vacation. Now I find myself begging for clouds or overcast weather. Don't forget to click on the photo to make it larger.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Random Elk Photos...

For today's wildlife photographs I decided to choose a couple of random elk photographs my my fall 2008 Yellowstone trip. These photographs were taken on different days but could be the same elk. The first one was taken very late in the evening as it was getting dark. We were heading north towards our camp when we spotted the traffic jam. For those of you that have been to Yellowstone you know I traffic jam can only mean one thing, wildlife. This bull was on top of this ridge with a herd of cows, but by the time we exited the truck and set up the tripods he dropped down the other side. It was already to dark to shoot anything else so we waited him out, hoping he would show up again. Just as we were about to give up he reappeared.

The second photo was shot eight days later and in the same general area but on the other side of the road after the rut had wound down. I really need time to get out and shoot some new wildlife. Like an addict I need a wildlife fix.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

My Attempt At Art...

This was my attempt at creating art with a photograph. It does not make a difference what you are photographing if you are not really into it. For those that shoot allot they will know what I mean when I say you have to feel it or you are just going through the motions and getting garbage.

Sometimes I am like that, I just can't feel it, like this particular day. Brian and I were in Montana and he wanted to stop and shoot some trees. We got out of the truck and he began firing right away. I looked around without releasing the shutter, I just wasn't into it at the time. But then I noticed this fence, I got down and looked at it closer along with the back ground. And I felt it, up came the camera and I started shooting. I was pleased with the results, I know that doesn't mean anyone else will like it.

I guess the moral of the story is don't just do something to do it. Do it because you like it, it strikes your fancy or what ever you want to call it. Nike isn't always right when they say "Just Do It".

Monday, November 17, 2008

More Mule Deer...

This is the same mule deer, but not one that I had previously posted. Unlike the others this buck really wasn't effected by our presence. He allowed us to photograph him all we wanted while he just kept eating berries. I don't recall exactly where we photographed him but I think it was just south of Tower Falls. In years past you would be looking at many Elk photographs from my trip but this year the Elk were scarce and the mule deer were plentiful. That being said expect more mule deer in the future.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Slough Creek...

I am getting to the point that I don't know what to say after uploading a photograph from Yellowstone. I guess the best I can do is tell you that if you have never been to Yellowstone you must find a way to get there in your lifetime. I think I mentioned it before but to people that love wildlife, natural wonders and beautiful landscape it would be the same thing to you as Disney is to small kids.

This photograph was taken along Slough Creek in the Lamar Valley section of Yellowstone the same time I took the photograph of the eagle I posted on Friday November 7. I noticed this lone bison under the tree and it was just what I picture in my head when I think of Yellowstone. Unfortunately I don't think the final product came out in the same beauty as I viewed it.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Montana Sky Watch...

Welcome to another great week of Sky Watch Friday, don't forget to go to the sky watch site and visit all the other great post today.

Today's photograph comes from Montana in the area of Glacier National Park. I would like to be able to tell you exactly where I took the photograph but I don't know. I just know we were very close and it was extremely windy and very cold. Some days I am at a loss for words an today is one of those, so that is all for now.