Raptors

Raptors are larger birds, such as Hawk, Eagles, Falcons, Owls, and Kites etc. the so-called Birds of Prey. They have strong talons and beaks to hunt their prey in a flash. It’s a photographer’s joy to capture them in action. I am an incidental photographer. Every once a while, I got lucky. If not, I am content with a clear shot.

American Kestrels are everywhere, but most of the time, way up there on the electric wires. This guy was not too far from me and the light is good, but he was just not looking in my direction. Out of desperation, I yelled and made all sorts of noise. Finally, he turned his head.

Usually, I either saw hawks hovering in the sky or perching on the fence by the road while I was driving. On this route recommended by my birding group, I saw at least 6 of Red-Tailed Hawks walking on the field. To most hawk shooters, this is nothing new, but it’s new to me.

Bald Eagle is the emblem of America. They have that distinctive and majestic outlook.  

Raptors themselves are beautiful creatures as long as I don’t witness how they tear their preys apart and demonstrate the nature of predators.

Blackbirds are nobody’s favorite, but in this instant, I appreciate their presence.

Winter Birds

It’s cold outside. Stepping out of the comfort zone isn’t always easy. I have been waiting for frost or (better) ice to be coated on the tree, rocks or anything, but up to this point, the lonely birdie is all I have:

Was thinking to spice it with some interesting background, but I decided to leave it alone. This is exactly what it looks like outdoors. Interesting that my winter faithful visitors are often the more common ones, such as junco and sparrows. Perhaps they have a larger community and have to work harder.

Early Holiday Greetings

Haven’t out much lately, I was thrilled to see these egrets. They perched themselves nicely and decorated the tree. Imagine the snowflakes are dancing in the background and the white Christamas ornaments come alive…

Sending holiday greetings to YOU ALL !!!

 

 

Morning Inspiration

It’s a hint of rainbow colors, a subtle highlight of the background,  a natural phenomenon, a God’s covenant, a divine promise… whatever on your mind is whatever it should be. How you see it is most important.

It’s a bright early morning on a chilly day. With Sun included, nobody was anxious to rise and shine. This party of Mother and Boy inspired me to pull my head out of the stocking cap, and hands from the gloves.

Looking at either of the pictures, I feel energized and relaxed at the same time.

It’s all about Kingfisher

It was 34 degree. The wind was blowing. A complete furnishing set of coat, scarf, stocking cap and glove is still not sufficient. I wondered where to find birds in this bleak weather and environment at first.

One red-tail Hawk perched on a distant tree and one Northern Harrier were digging something on the ground, but they were so distant that my longest lens could not do justice. On the way out, we spotted this Kingfisher on the limb (if you can find it in the picture) and Great Blue Heron down below. Apparently, they were aiming at the same target – fish. Far as it appears, this is probably the closest encounter I ever had with a Kingfisher. Closer but still not close enough. Considerable details are lost after cropping and zooming. Still, this is so far the best Kingfish picture I have. The quest for a BETTER bird picture continues…

However, if not for this picture, I would never notice the interesting white spots circled around its wing. And, do you know he raised his tail when he calls? (see the image below)

The weather was not encouraging. I expected nothing to begin, but now I have a closer look at my favorite bird, back, front and sides. How cool is that? I am a true believer of JUST DO IT and EXPECT UNEXPECTED.

Barely Fall Colors

Out chasing fall colors, but nothing but yellow and occasional orange and red.  Waterfalls are not one of my favorite subjects, but it is now my only option. Rarely I used my tripod but I did it this time except that the wind kept blowing and the dancing leaves appeared blurry…

Wanting some fall colors in the scene, but the gushing water was overpowering.

Not exactly what I came here for, but I accomplished one thing – took my tripod out of the trunk.

Early Fall In Montana

Ten years ago when I visited Montana, I was impressed by its majestic mountains and bold scenery. On the recent second visit, I found I am so in love of it.

The road to Logan Pass (from Avalanche to Jackson Glacier) was closed due to the freshly covered snow, we were just one day late. Fall colors inside the park have begun to pop on a big scale, beautiful, but not dramatic enough, a bit too early.  We missed out the drama, but no disappointment. It was misty and somewhat bleak; however, the view is no second to a sunshine and glorious day.

Due to weather condition, we decided not to hike any of the trails where I originally expected better photography opportunities. Particularly after my fall, I could manage to walk, but hiking was impossible.

The recent fire has taken away quite a bit of shine from MacDonald Lake. Without getting to the top viewpoints, this is the best I can get from the highway. The burn makes you sigh.

There are slight orange and red colors mixed in with the majority Yellow. Snow changed our itinerary; meanwhile, it provided us with stunning contrast colors. Nature simply knows how to present at its best in the different season and under various circumstances. Oh, Yellow, I have never been so attracted to the color, and so refreshed with its purity.

My dream shots around Lake Mcdonald cannot be fulfilled, instead, I snapped the one below that I love. Mountain, lake, cloud, snow, all colors, and reflection. In addition, this picture marks where I slipped and fell on the ice. I paid a fair price to take this picture. The outcome of my injury prevents me from sitting, but I am still anxious to share, at least some of them.

 

 

Joseph – a Jewel of Oregon

Walking down the street, I thought this fair lady is waiting to cross the street. I waited and waited, but she did not move…

I am afraid of mice since I was little. However, I cannot help not to photograph this cute guy. I have seen blackbirds and egrets on the back of a cow, but a mouse on the nose of a moose seems new. Their little chitchat is intimate and friendly.

Two simple traditional horseshoes plus a small coil of wire are turned into a cowboy roper who is furnished with a cowboy hat and bandana. A small piece of whimsical art like this makes me smile.

Joseph, one of my favorite destination, is located in northeastern Oregon, on the foot of Wallowa Mountains – the ‘Swiss Alps’ of Oregon. Aside from her picturesque landscape, this town is full of sculpture artisans who produce amazing copper sculptures.  No place is like Joseph where you are surrounded by beautiful copperworks and gorgeous landscape.