Thursday, January 31, 2013


Not much to say about this one.  Just a nice shot of a couple of horses hanging out.  One of them checking out what's on the other side of the fence while the other checking out the goofy guy with the camera.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Shuffle off to......

And the answer is.....Buffalo.  There is a famous picture out there called Cranes in the Mist.  My version is Buffalo in the Rain and Fog. I've seen this guy before.  In fact I think I posted a shot of him in the past.  But he's always been laying down and pretty lethargic.  This time he was up and moving.  Not sure if it was the rain/sleet coming down or that another buffalo was with him.  Unfortunately, the picture doesn't do a real good job of showing just how big and powerful he looked when shooting shots.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The thrill of Victory

This last weekend was the 108th running of the Norge International Ski Jumping Championships, the oldest continueous ski jumping competition in the world.  It's held about 15 minutes from my house.  This is probably the single most anticipated event of the year for me and my camera.  It's totally family friendly, you see alot of crazy people, and you get to witness an incredible sport live.  It looks pretty cool on TV and even better in person.  These guys(and gals) are nuts.  The first day of the event is for the juniors, 4 years old and up to I'm not sure.  But, Sunday is for the big people, but even then, I swear the jumpers are only 14 years old or so.  I think most are in the early 20's.  I heard the announcer call one of the jumpers "the old man" and then he said his age was 28.  Of course, one of the big draws of the event is to witness the "beat down" in skiers terms.  This is went someone comes down but doesn't quite get their skis to land under them.  You always hope no one gets hurt and no one did, but there was a couple of  "beat downs".  Here's a few shots of some the activity. One is of, obviously, a winner.  Another is of, once again obviously, a beat down.  And another is of a guy enjoying his own kind of competition.  Check out the headgear for his sport.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Fire and ice

Unfortunately, the skies were unaccommodating on our ice fishing trip.  Pretty cloudy the whole time we were there.  But, once we crossed back over into Illinois, we saw sun.  I took some of the backroads home and I was lucky to catch the scene almost in my backyard.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Water everywhere and not a drop to drink

My cousin has never been shy about poking fun or practical jokes.  We had time for one last photo before heading out from our weekend excursion.  I was following my cousin into town when he stopped his car, ran back to mine, and says, "Let's take a shot that will make Laney(Derek's mother) cringe".  The day before we had stopped here and he wanted to see if he could make it out to the rock in the river without falling through.  His first attempt failed and he ended up with a wet foot.  He did eventually find a solid path out to the rock while there was moving/running water a few yards away.  He decided on this day to do it again, but with my son.  With a little trepidation, I let Derek follow him to the rock and they made sure they followed the foot tracks from the day before knowing this was the "safe" path.  It was only after the successful shot that we realized that Derek's mother had already let me take Derek for the weekend out onto a frozen lake with 40 degree plus temps and really, how much anxiety was this shot of two people standing on a rock going to create.  I'm still glad we did it.  It turned out to be a nice picture.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Ice, Ice Baby

We're talking ice fishing.  My son and I have spent the last couple of days on a frozen lake in Northern Wisconsin looking for that trophy fish lurking below the ice.  Or at least some small ones to cook up a good fish fry dinner.  Unfortunately,  neither happened.  What did happen was fulfilling my son's unstoppable desire to create a hole in 6" depth of ice and drop a minnow and line in the water and sit and wait for what could be hours, to catch some fish.  And that we did.  We did so with the help of my cousin Paul and his wife, Lacey, who graciously invited us to his cabin for the weekend where we slept at night and then head out in the day to fish from the comfort of his heated palace of a ice fishing shack/trailer/castle. We barbecued venison hamburgers, ate plenty of junk food, drank a beer or two, and took lots of pictures.  We did catch fish, just not as many nor the walleyes that we  wanted to.  For an 8 year old, it was a total success.  Just look at the fish he caught and in the one shot you see him out on a frozen lake, in January, with no boots or socks.  Whoops, maybe I shouldn't have posted that one.  Actually, socks and boots got wet and we were doing a quick dry on the heater.  He didn't care.  You can't do that at home. The biggest success of the trip, though, was proving to him that he can have fun with his old man on a trip. Or maybe that was a success for me.

Monday, January 7, 2013

New Year's Light

I figured what better way to start the new year, but with a sunrise picture.  I was out the other morning looking for shots and found this line of pines.  My goal was to get a shot of the string of trees with snow going up from the ground till about 3 feet up the tree.  Once I saw the big flaming sun through the viewfinder, though, I changed my angle and went for the sun poking through the trees.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Holidays are not over yet

Another New Year has past.  Another Holiday season over.  Yet, my house and yard are still covered with Christmas lights.  I had plans to start the fun project of removing the strands upon strands of lights, candy canes, and the Holiday Bear on the chimney, but my wife informs me that we have one last holiday get together this weekend and she wants them left up till then.  I get it. It happens once a year.  What difference does it make if I'm on the roof at 20 degrees or at 10 degrees which is what it will probably be when I'm doing it. Leaving them up a few days longer did give me the opportunity to make a quick video of the deal.  So enjoy and think about my neighbors while viewing.