Welcome to Ken's Lens Blog
I've found that posting to a blog, just to be posting to a blog, is unsatisfying to the writer and more so the reader. So I don't post to this very often, only when there's something going on that I want to share. Since this site is place to show some of my photographs, the blog entries generally won't be earth-shaking life revelations or gob-smacking insights. They will relate the fun I'm having with my photography and talk about what it is that makes me want to raise the camera to my eye.
In late May, 2017, Anne and I spent a few days in Sequoia and Kings Canyon. It was the first time either of us had visited the Parks. Having spent time in the mountains over the years, we were familiar with that pint-forest vibe and much of the National Park is very similar to other mountainous areas. The big difference, and I do mean BIG, are the giants. We visited the General Grant and General Sherman groves which abound with other giants of lesser rank, some anonymous altogether. All were impressive beyond description. Imaging a tree nearly as tall as a 30 story building and almost 100 feet in circumference at its base. That's General Sherman!
Being accustomed to life at sea level, getting around at 7000 feet was a chore. We took things slowly and in small doses. Still, you feel it. Even after three days.
If you haven't been to the area, make plans. Be sure to include King's Canyon in your plans. It's uncrowded and the canyons, valleys and peaks are stunning. This is a nice time of year to go, just before the Memorial Day holiday and summer crush, and moderate temps. We had cool nights and hot days.
I've put a few images in a Sequoia National Park gallery for you to look at. Please enjoy!
In the fall of 2016 Anne and I traveled across the country to see an area we'd never been to, the New England states of Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. What a trip! We arrived a little before the best of the fall color but it didn't deter us from enjoying the rugged coastline - some of it made the Big Sur coast look like a sandy beach - the friendly natives and, of course, the lobster. I had no idea that lobster could be eaten in so many ways. It's fun to simply tear into the thing with your bare hands but my favorite meal of all back there was the lobster mac and cheese. This takes taste to the next level and the next level beyond that. Wow!
Anne and I spent three weeks in New England staying for extended periods in Portland, and Bar Harbor, Maine and in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Day trips and harbor and river excursions took us to so many gorgeous places. Acadia National Park is a feast for the senses and is both rugged and intimate. The little out-of-the-way lobster pounds as they're called let us taste the freshest of the fresh.
I've put up two galleries for this trip. One showing a few of the unique lighthouses we encountered and a larger gallery that shares some of the other surprises and memory treasures we found on our journey. Please enjoy.
Death Valley National Park experienced a phenomenal bloom in spring 2016, thanks to a little rain. We spent a few days there and discovered a variety of wildflowers that simply knocked our socks off. I'm sure we could easily have spent a full week exploring the valley and not seen half of what's there.
The weather was great, too, in the mid 90s. I know what you're thinking, but you have to be there to appreciate just how comfortable that temperature is in this environment.
A new gallery - Death Valley Super Bloom - has been added to show you some of the flowers we found. Non-flower shots taken this time will be added to the existing Death Valley gallery. Please enjoy!
We're staying a bit closer to home this year. In the fall, plans are in place to spend a few weeks exploring Vermont, New Hampshire and the Maine coast. We're hoping for some vivid color and major New England charm...if we can see any of it through the political campaign signs and the smoke from burning hair rising from frenzied mobs of the lobotomized electorate. We'll just concentrate on the natural scenery.
Still married to a surface-crawler, Anne will cheerfully endure another stimulating cross-country road trip aboard the PG GRUVN. The passengers are witty and urbane, the accommodations are quite comfortable, the audio books are interesting and the surroundings constantly diverse. Said it before... the only way to fly.
Neither Anne nor I have ever been to this particular neck of the woods. While living in Virginia, Anne and I, and Nora a babe in arms, spend several days in Cape Cod, but that's the extent of our north eastern travels. We're excited about discovering the area.
We will, as usual, end up in Philly for a week with Nora and the boys; always the icing on the cake for us. I'll be posting images here upon our return.
Note: This image is not from New England. It's a shot of a mill house along the Blue Ridge Parkway taken in 2011. I'll replace it with a real New England image when I have one.
We're home again and our 2015 "Spend it all" tour was a resounding success. We were away from home for ten weeks, four of which were spent on the North Atlantic and the North Sea, even venturing into the Arctic Circle on a couple of occasions. A grand time.
We spent a week in New York once we arrived on the east coast. Saw a few plays and enjoyed the hottest recorded June day in the history of Manhattan. Just lucky, I guess. After a smooth crossing on the QM2, we enjoyed a week in London. We spent a day at Wimbledon, which was incredible, and our luck held and we enjoyed the hottest recorded June day in London.
I've put up a small gallery of images from our time in Norway which was our last stop on the way back to Dover. I plan to add similar galleries for our stops in Iceland, The Shetland and Faroe Islands as well as Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight.
Needless to say, it's going to take a little time to edit down thousands of images. I'll post them as they come ready and say a little something here about the experiences behind the images. I hope you enjoy this little taste of the Norwegian coastal life.
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