Tag Archives: Secord Forest

“Pink Hepaticas”

“Pink Hepaticas”

“It would seem from this fact, that man is naturally a wild animal, and that when taken from the woods, he is never happy in his natural state, ’till he returns to them again.” 
― Benjamin Rush

I am happy to be returning to the forest, which I’m never really away from for long. However, weather and work, have teamed up to make my brief forays into the local forest quite difficult. So, it was so pleasant to see life returning to the woods I so dearly love, this past weekend.

As I said in yesterday’s post, the forest seemed pretty much bereft of new life, as the carpet of dull brown detritus dominated the scene. And then, a small splash of pink, literally opened my eyes and I became ‘tuned’ into the subtle changes around me.

I was so pleased to see the Spring Beauties and then a few hearty Blue Cohosh along the trail. Then, I spotted what I thought, at first, were more spring beauties, which turned out to be Hepatica, also known, locally as Mayflowers. The same effect happened again. As I looked up from the first small clump that I saw, I noticed that the hillside was covered with many more, larger clusters, in wonderful bright whites and soft pinks. I chose the pinks for today’s image, since they are not quite as common.

It would seem spring has finally sprung here in Southern Ontario!

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm

1/250 sec, f/8.0, ISO 100

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

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“Merry Christmas 2017”

“Merry Christmas 2017”

“I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!” 
― Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas. Hoping this find everyone healthy and happy and enjoying this time of the year in whatever way brings you joy, even through this Christmas post from the Secord Forest trailhead.

 

“Red Cap”

“Red Cap”

“It is the dim haze of mystery that adds enchantment to pursuit.”
– Antoine Rivarol

I came across this mystery mushroom a few days ago, while hiking during our recent partial eclipse. I’m unsure of the species, but the red cap and ivory stem would indicate it to be a member of the Amanita family of mushrooms. The shape of the cap is not typical of this species though, so I’m stumped.

The image quality is not my best, as it was hastily made while trying to avoid the hoards of mosquitoes which were particularly active that day and were particularly voracious, despite my insect repellent, which is usually very effective. Despite the obstacles, at least I have an image I can review and figure out what this is called.

iPhone 7 back camera @ 4.0mm
1/15 sec; f/1.8; ISO 40

 

“Early April Polypore”

“Early April Polypore”

“It is strange how new and unexpected conditions bring out unguessed ability to meet them.”
― Edgar Rice Burroughs

Many-coloured Polypore, to be more precise.

Finally, after several weeks, waiting for the ice to come off the trails and for some of the muck to dry up, I hit the trails today. My goal was to find some sign of new life. I was let down on that front, much of the forest floor was littered with a solid mat of compressed leaves.

Let me explain that statement. Due to the nature of our snowfalls, here in southern Ontario, the leaves, which, in recent years, have been exposed to the air by mid-March, were completely flattened and compressed, something I have not seen in a few years. Also, many of the taller, stiffer stemmed weeds, like goldenrod, had also been flattened down by the snow load, with only a few singular stems remaining erect.

The landscape reminded me the land has been dormant and is slowly awakening from its long rest. It is taking its time. Yet, through the gray landscape, some surprising finds revealed themselves, such as this fungus, growing on a trailside log. Unlike much of the bleached, winter-worn trees and plants, this polypore showed signs of live and colour, despite pockets of ice within the fungus itself. Look into the ‘cups’ of the fungus, especially just right of centre, and you will see a small pocket of frozen water. The polypore’s ability to weather the winter and look fresh today really surprised me.

The colour is what caught me attention. Everything else was weather-worn and bleached, even the beech trees, which held onto many of their leaves through the winter in bright golds and oranges, had eventually faded to dull, ghostly yellows (more on that in my next post).

So, I was not disappointed, I did find signs of new life, just not in ways I expected.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1/50 sec, f/16.0, ISO 200

Hi Resolution image on 500px

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/EdLehming
or my website (some images available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

 

Thursday Doors – December 29, 2016

“Alternate Entrance”

This week’s submission to Norm 2.0‘s Thursday Doors.

Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favourite door photos from around the world.

A simple final submission for 2016, made today as I enjoyed the outdoors and much freshly fallen snow on the trail system near my home. This door is the side entrance to an old barn that sits near the trailhead at Secord Forest. The property was at one time an active farm but has been absorbed into the conservation area.

I’ve walked past this door many times, surprised that it has not been more significantly vandalized.

Happy New Year Door lovers, see you in 2017!

“Trailside Birch”

“Trailside Birch”

“You never know what’s around the corner. It could be everything. Or it could be nothing. You keep putting one foot in front of the other, and then one day you look back and you’ve climbed a mountain.”
― Tom Hiddleston

Ah, the weekend again and a nice time to get out and enjoy what autumn has to offer. As I went for a hike with my son we both noted that fall is a sensory banquet, filled with sights, sounds, smells and texture. We left taste to another time, though pumpkin pie did enter the conversation as a possibility.

I’ve hiked this train more times than I can remember, yet every time, it offers something new. At this point in the trail there is a small but wonderful grove of birch trees. Larger birches are spare in this area and usually not in well established groves. This one is right on the trail and grows on a gentle hillside, allowing ample sunlight to warm the roots. The rest of the forest in this section is largely maple and beech. It’s the beech leaves littering the forest floor that give it that beautiful coppery glow.

Something I have not tried here was a vertical pan, which I have been enjoying a lot lately. I made three images and chose this one as my favourite. There is a nice contrast between the greens and oranges against the bright blue sky, broken up by the white lines of the birches. To see another of this grove, please check my other image made here last year. Last year’s image offered a bit more leaf cover and more undergrowth.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD
 @ 75 mm
1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 200

High resolution image can be viewed on 500px

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/EdLehming
or my website (some images available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“Hawkweed Blossom” – Secord Forest

“Hawkweed Blossom” - Secord Forest

“Spring turns to summer and delicate pinks and whites, give way to bright reds, oranges, and yellows, as nature shifts her palette to match the temperature” – Ed Lehming

Today’s photo is another attempt to understand and enjoy the world of macro photography. The bright Orange Hawkweed (Pilosella aurantiaca) is a smallish meadow flower that is common in this area through June and July. It blooms a few weeks later than it’s yellow relative, Mouse Eared Hawkweed (Hieracium pilosella).

This image proved a bit challenging as I’m shooting with manual macro extension tubes and it was a bit windy, which made good focus at such a narrow depth of field very difficult and I’m still trying to get a ‘feel’ for this technique which is very new to me.

Despite the challenges, I’m still quite pleased with the results and am looking forward to other opportunities as they present themselves. I’m seeing great beauty in common things.

Nikon D800
Nikkor AF 28-70mm f/3.5~F/4.5D
@ 70mm (28mm extension)
1/500 sec, f/5.0, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/EdLehming
or my website (some images available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com