Tuesday, November 15, 2011

orange red and gold walk through brookland's trees

small leaf linden gets yellow 

oaks in gold orange and scarlet red were in the square in front of Brooks Mansion 

the doorway in the distance is the Brooks family Mansion 

I believe the District of Columbia's emblem tree is this scarlet oak the color is so red for several days each autumn before they turn brown.  I wish we had more of them. 
All these trees in one little square area next to Metro parking lot and in front of the the Brooks Mansion that are slated to be cut down to make way for more housing in the not too distant future. It is a nice little square of urban parklike land that happens to belong to the Metro who can do as they please with it in the end. They even planted fruiting plum trees along one edge of the square of land which are picked each year by neighbors and visitors to the area who know when they are ripe. I was just passing by on my way to the post office and knew the colors were going to be pretty good so I took my camera along to see if I could capture some of it before it's history.

Monday, November 14, 2011

walk at the battlefield

jogger running up the to the Stonewall Jackson monument
This past Friday morning November 11th 20011, I was home in Manassas, the scene of one of the first major battles during the civil war 150 years ago and where there is a large national park on those battle grounds. I had an hour free on Veterans day and decided to go take a walk in the park. It's been a good while since I was up there and this time I discovered a new trail leading to a new section of the park I didn't know could be accessed by walking down this new trail through the woods! Perfect time of year if not the perfect day for a walk there. On the main ground site it was painfully windy and cold 36ºF wind chill they said as I was driving away at 11 in the morning after my walk! I had the small Kodak handy to make a few pictures and enjoyed a woodland and over field walk for 45 minutes by myself. There were a number of runners, joggers and dog walkers there too but I was one of the early birds at 10 AM.
cannon on the ridge overlooking Henry house and Manassas Mountain in the distance, beautiful woods ablaze with color between the field and the mountain.

cluster of oak trees looking kind of red orange stand against the intense wind which made the flags stand straight out this veterans day.

as I approached the woods this red grassy field and the colorful trees beyond built my excitement to see more leaves 

The entrance to the trail a wooded section of the park behind the visitors center.

Look carefully at the blow up to see the deer in the woods
It was a doe but about 100 feet further down the trail as a jogger came towards me a buck sauntered across the trail between us and seemed to be limping a bit. He had about 5 antlers on his head.

golden leaves of a young beech tree which may be as much as 15-20  years old they grow very slowly

at the edge of the forest were several more fields along the trail I followed
This reddish grass is one of my favorite things in the fall fields . 

The field beyond the trial's edge seen from the woods casting shadows in the foreground

Lots of colored leaves but they didn't photograph as well as they looked with the naked eye. 
I want to go back and try one of the long walks. They have one trail that is a full 5-6 miles long! Woods and fields and hills and valleys and Bull run the creek that surrounds one edge of the battlefield is another place to visit during the early spring. It has some great wild flowers that bloom just before the leaves come out on the trees. Next trip will be a winter walk. Maybe on Thanksgiving weekend? Or perhaps during Christmas holiday visits.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Yorktown Va

On one day during our trip to Williamsburg we decided to drive the short drive down to the third corner of the triangle of historic areas called Yorktown. This is where the American Revolution ended and English surrendered to George Washington and the Continental American army and French naval forces that brought them down.  After a visit two years ago Phyllis and Mildred said we would enjoy it and they would come with us. We had a lovely sunny day and the drive was nice and not too long. We arrived and found the area by the York River where they had visited with my sister and brother in law and his mom.
We decided to go check out the historic area on top of the hill and the Mom's just hung out and shopped by the river.
Before we went up we saw the tall ship which was at pier seeking riders for a two hour cruise ($30 per person) it was tempting but costly. Maybe on some future trip we can go for a ride on the tall ship Alliance. I have always wanted to see how it feels to be on a big sail boat like that after reading of all the harrowing crossings our ancestors took back and forth to Europe in these small wind powered vessels.
Keith and I enjoyed a cool local gallery full of crafts from local artists. Quilts pottery even some glass work and naturally lots of watercolor and prints of historic areas and views were in the gallery. Then we just walked around looking at what was there and the many buildings that had been restored and rebuilt. Soon it was time to get back to the river side and eat a great meal with the two ladies who brought us out there. We had a view of the river in the restaurant and saw the tall ship go sailing by during the 2 PM cruise!
We also saw the coast guard doing drills at the piers. They were pulling up to the pier attaching ropes to the piers then unhooking them and driving back out and in again over and over. Three or four boats were all doing this at the piers. I enjoyed the visit and had a very good walk up and down the hill that day. We all slept well that night.
This is the end of my Williamsburg photo essays. Hope to go back and next time with a better camera and even more time to explore all the nooks and corners and museums and historic houses and gardens that are so intriguing and interesting and always evolving with new discoveries and new stories of how the new world was in the 1700's in the colonial era.

Phyllis, Keith and Mildred seated at the river walk where there were plenty of benches to rest upon.  Notice they all wear dark glasses.

Keith working hard to get a close up of a moving target

Monarch butterflies love the nectar of lantana flowers 

One of my favorite butterflies on asters by the river walk

two of the coast guard ships pulling in and out of the piers 

Three coast guard boats drilling docking maneuvers under the massive bridge 

coast guard ties up the speed boat....

Two sail boats at the piers, the little one in front only had one mast. 

the tall ship up close from the pier

the back door to the corner house 

brick wall around a big formal garden nice to a very large colonial home 

up on the hill a few historic houses 

The first sail went up on the three masted tall ship as we were heading back to eat lunch 

Finally as we were waiting on our food the big tall ship went by with full display of it's sails! Really nice way to end the perfect touring afternoon. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Williamsburg II

There was a first day on our visit to Willamsburg when we toured the gardens and just enjoyed the beautiful light on all the old and reconstructed buildings. I get a kick out of looking and making photos of all these patterns colors textures and compositions.
Pomegranates ripe and ready

pomegranate flowering in a pot


beauty berry a native to Virginia 

cool porch design in a back yard view

lady in red riding sidesaddle 

gate with a hedge overhead 

fancy backyard 

Lady riding in a towncar

handsome out house 

another white mulberry leans over the street 

passing colonials 

lady with a hen

hen on a leash was with the lady in red

Orange leaves against the red wall

kitchen garden and out houses for smoking meats and keeping milk cold 

hen house 

Tavern kitchen garden 

white mulberry tree trunk cut back but not down

unusual fence design framing the lovely hedge and yellow leaves 

Love that blue sky against the red and orange 

The old courthouse under the cotton puff clouds