Panther Mountain Journey 9.25.20

Hello Friends! Tonight’s Feature Image is titled “Panther Mountain Journey 92520” and is available for purchase by clicking the thumbnail and reaching out to me on the contact page.

The big blue truck slowly climbs the county route up Panther Mountain. Lose gravel kicks out from under the tires as I gently feather the throttle up the steep curvy incline. In a few spots the overgrown branches sweep the fenders. But it’s not a problem. Instead I see it as the welcoming embrace of nature. The county has actually done a little work to the road over the summer. The new gravel filled in the ruts and open ditches that challenged even the big 4 wheel drive. I rounded the hairpin turn about 3/4 of the way to the top when a piece of road sprung to life and lifted itself vertically to the top of the embankment. It only took me a moment to realize that it was a grouse. The bird’s perfect camouflage quickly concealed its new position in a Rhododendron thicket. I hoped for a shot of the bird but dark underbrush against the highlight of sun was more than the sensor could deal with. My human eyes could see it as a shadow peaking out and bobbing it’s head from side to side in an effort to figure out what was moving inside the parked truck but it was a complete mystery to the lens of my camera. I decided to let him get away from me rather than attempting to track him to a point where I might force the shot and once more a few loose gravels are expelled as my ascent resumes. Finally I arrived at the gas well road. It’s wide enough to allow me park while being out of way of anyone making their way to the spot where the rafters and Kayakers go to launch in swollen Gauley River. I loaded up the bird song file in my tablet and sat still with the windows down hoping to draw in a curious forest resident such the big woodpecker I saw here a few days ago. The birds were a no show but I did manage to find a few interesting subjects to post at a later date. So I entered the main pass through the mountain again and made my way to a second wide spot above the valley. The view from the road is amazing.

The view from the cab of my truck on Panther Mountain. There’s only a few feet of road between the tire and the valley below.

With any luck I’ll be able to reach this spot when Fall Colors peak in a few weeks.

Stepping out of cab will my long lens I was able to spot a few Kayaks already on the river and playing with the rapids.

Even with the 300 mm lens Kayakers look like little dots on the water

The Kayaks bob and dodge through the current for a while and then continue the trip downstream.

And I too need to continue my journey to the next phase in order to get a few more photos. Until tomorrow night I wish you all a blessed day.

Hey Friends! Just a quick reminder that Lloyds Lens Photography is available for portraits!

To book me simply reach out using the Contact Page and we’ll set a date. If you’re within a 50 mile radius of Summersville West Virginia all travel fees are waived.

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251

Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer

Thank you again for your support of my page!

Into The Storm

Hello Friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Into The Storm” and is available for purchase by following the instructions at the bottom of the article.

Angry clouds gather above my head once again. The wind batters the abandoned strip mine in bursts as the songbirds huddle together in the thickest part of the underbrush as they seek shelter from nature’s wrath. Somewhere else in the forest a box tortoise closes his shell as tightly as he can and the deer bed down on the leeward side of the mountain. The instinct to avoid a storm is one of the strongest forces in nature.

But there are those who have a different mindset. Some people run into the storm. For those people the raw power that God placed in elements of nature is irresistible, for some it’s scientific curiosity, and for others it’s the knowledge that after the storm passes someone will need help. I’ve found that the majority of the people who run into the storm do so because they themselves were touched by the aftermath of a storm in some way.

There’s definitely a Superman complex to one degree or another going on in the minds of most people. That’s okay as long as it comes with an equal measure humility. As humans we have a drive to make a difference and there’s a sense of fulfillment that comes with helping a stranger that will never see or hear from you again. But I think that there’s more than social instincts happening. I think that helping to set things right makes us feel like we’ve got some measure of power over the storm. We may not be able to stop the storms but the storms can’t stop us either. The scientists who chase storms do so to provide earlier warnings and stronger shelters. The rescuers do so to bring as many people to safety as possible. The rebuilders take up where the rescuers and scientists left off. Everyone does their part and the whole benefits.

But this phenomenon isn’t limited to weather. We extend this behavior into all aspects of life. A person who is terrified of a natural storm may not think twice about rushing in to aid someone who is in the middle of emotional distress. I’d be willing to bet that a lot of those who would take on the natural storm will steer clear of the emotional storm. We all have a purpose and a place in such things. In fact for a lot of people the “storm” comes in the form of loneliness and what’s called for is a person who is just willing to ask them about their day.

As the storm moves in closer to my position I can see the thick bands of rain cascading down and a second wave of thunder begins the countdown to when I need to have my camera and myself someplace warm and dry. Fortunately the big blue truck is just a few steps away from where I’m set up. This particular storm isn’t really expected to cause damage. Sometimes all it turns out to be is a few gusts of wind, an isolated shower and a lot of noise. That’s great for a dramatic photograph but not really dangerous enough to warrant sticking around long enough to get wet.

With my lens tucked away safely in its dry case the big blue truck rolls back onto the pavement and I move on to the next opportunity.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Click here to visithttps://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Did you know that I also do portraits by appointment? If you’re interested in a portrait session either message me on Facebook or Use the Contact form. The YouTube link below takes you one of my slideshows.

https://youtu.be/FDcrY6w8oY8

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simply message me on Facebook oruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251

Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer.

Thank you again for your support of my page!❤

To Go A Wandering

We’ll go a wandering, that’s what we’ll do.

We’ll find a path that’s straight, beneath a sky that’s blue.

We’ll take our time, we’ll do it right.

We’ll wander all day and into the night.

We’ll pass beyond the hills and into the dale. We’ll find everyday treasures and tales to tell.

We’ll have stars for diamonds and the moon for a pearl.

And the dawn will bring gold at the new day’s unfurl.

We’ll wander and wander and continue to roam, till path that we wander brings us home.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

Ring this bell for Facebook

Recently, I’ve been made aware that many of my posts on Facebook are being buried in the feed. So, if you don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website at the bottom of theWelcome Page

Tonight’s Feature Image is titled “Straight Into Morning” and is available for purchase by using the Contact Form on my website. (Note, I do not share or sell contact information. EVER)

4X6 is $5.00

5X7 is $10.00

8X10 is $15.00

Some cropping may be necessary for certain sizes.

Ring this bell to order prints or schedule portraits

I’m also available for portraits by appointment. Use the Contact Form or message me on Facebook for details.

The Primeval Adventures Of My Youth.

The deep forests are an easy place to get lost. You start out on a dirt road and you just keep walking when you run out of gravel. Eventually the mud transitions into leaf litter. The moss grows thick and the gnarled undergrowth fills every available space. Just beyond these trees are the cliffs I used to play on as a kid. There’s a rocky ledge with a large overhang that one can sit on and observe the forest floor below. I’m guessing that it’s only about twenty or maybe thirty feet in hight but to a young man in his early teens it may as well had been the edge of the world. I would get all garbed up to the point where it looked like I was going on a major expedition down the Amazon. I carried a large Bowie Knife on my belt for survival. The only thing I ever used it for was to mark trees by cutting out a patch of the outer bark and being careful not to damage the live bark underneath. (If done right it in no way harms the tree). I would sometimes take a slingshot along. ( called a catapult by many of my international friends). I would try to pick off individual leaves with a small stone. The stones are not nice and consistent like the fancy ammo in the stores today. That made hitting anything consistently quite a challenge. Sometimes I would pick up acorns or hickory nuts for slingshot ammo which was better for accuracy but didn’t really impart much impact to the target. I’d bet that if I made my way to the ledge today I’d find a pile of small stones in the back of ledge waiting to be used during the zombie apocalypse. Other days I would trek down into the valley below. I would pick out a sapling to craft into spear. There was a particular rotten stump below the cliff that was just the right consistency to allow the spear to stick. I was actually better at throwing the spear than I was with the slingshot.

The road in the feature image was one of my favorite childhood memories and a way of escape from the mundane world and a gateway to a primeval adventure.

The Silent Road part 4. The Fireweaver.

After learning the secret written in the stone. I began to make my calculations. The maiden was carefully observing my every action as I removed the jackknife from my pants pocket and started scraping small shavings from the log where she had been seated. Ever so cautiously I collected them in the tail of my shirt. Next I would need a large piece bark and dead twigs from a nearby elder bush. I cut a notch in the bark just like my grandfather had taught me as a child and began to spin a twig in the notch. In no time at all I had a hot coal and was able to sustain it with the shavings. I took the next twig which longer split it perfectly in half. The pithy center was easy to remove and once that was done I bound them together with strands of the tall grass in meadow. I studied the broken dulcimer and committed it’s outline to memory. As I worked I looked up and saw the maiden looking onward in amazement and the raven still circled me above the trees. I placed the first hot coal on the dry wood and began to kindle it with the elder blow tube. I occasionally stepped back to the stone and checked the mathematical formulas carved there by ancient hand that was long since gone. The legacy written was instructions for a new dulcimer. The precision burning of the wood and removal of the char would need to be perfect. I became so involved with the task at hand that time lost all meaning. There was only the fire and the wood and my breath. Periodically a large drop of sweat would fall into the coal and erupt with a long stream of steam. With the jackknife I would put the finishing touches on the piece. Hand carved dovetails to hold it together and keys for tuning the strings recovered from the old one. There it was. My dreamworld had a new voice. I turned to the maiden and offered my finished product along with the parchment entrusted to me by the raven. She spoke not a word but the newfound joy in her eyes was the most profound expression of gratitude I ever experienced. Her eyes danced over the open scroll as she read the music. Then, she tuned the instrument to perfect pitch and took a breath. As she played the first few notes that gray sky rolled back and the birds all began to sing with her. The newly awoken sun pushed back the remaining clouds. With my task completed I began to make the return journey back to the waking world. As I approached the iron gate a now familiar shadow passed overhead. As turned to cast one last gaze on my dreamworld the raven landed on the road. He spoke in a raspy voice. “There is more to see here. You are as much a part of this world as you part of the one beyond that gate. You are the Fireweaver and a prince of the dreamworld.”

The drone of the alarm clock grew more intense as I slowly rose from my bed. The sun was shining through the blinds and just outside my window I could hear a mockingbird singing a song that was oddly familiar…