This little bird, a yellow rumped warbler, made these cedar tree berries seem like a pretty big meal. I was a little surprised that it was able to swallow the berries. It did seem to take it’s time, especially compared to the waxwing birds that were also feeding. This little, aloof warbler, waited until the right moment, before attempting to swallow the berry. It seemed to make sure it was balanced and secure on a branch, then check for any signs of danger, and finally…NOM!
Right around Thanksgiving, a large group of Cedar Waxwings, and a few other birds, decided the berries on this tree were ripe and ready. There were plenty of berries to go around, but not enough space for all the birds at once. They would take turns visiting the cedar tree for a meal, with the bulk of the flock waiting in a nearby oak tree.
Then there was that time someone shot a big-budget movie scene, at this isolated beach in Mexico. This little beach pueblo, nestled at the base of the gnar mountains of Michoacan, was once a secret spot for risk-taking surfers. But after a couple decades, as the sport rose in popularity, the crowds eventually hit hard and the once sleepy pueblo started popping. So much so, that watching a crew set up to shoot a scene here seemed sadly normal for the times.
It’s been 8 years since I traveled and surfed mainland Mexico. Back then, I took so many photos and concentrated on getting those pics to the surfers, as well as Surfermag.com, that I wound up with a ton of outtakes. I always pushed forward and just stashed them all on back up discs. Now, after all those years, I’ve decided to spend some time weaving those old pics onto this site. I don’t have much of an outline, so I’m just gonna blog it out!
I might as well start with my favorite wave and place. The vibe and local crew here was never anything but pure surf and love.
Here’s a gallery of images from a monarch habitat in Santa Cruz. Located within a small forest of eucalyptus trees, on the edge of the Pacific Ocean, this city park is a treasure for the butterflies and their admirers. Also in this gallery, is a rare event of crows having a feast on the lofty suntanning insects.
Predators usually leave the monarch off their menu. Because of the insect’s diet on milkweed, which is toxic to birds, it gets an edge on survival and is typically left alone. But for some reason, not on this day. Either this group of crow has not had the pleasure of getting sick from eating monarchs, or these monarchs didn’t get enough milkweed in their early stages of life.
When the swells come crashing into the cliffs at Santa Cruz, the spectacle is best observed from a safe distance. If there’s bits of kelp, and the area is soaking wet, then it’s not a good place to be standing!
Lily and I were on an afternoon walk along West Cliff, and we stumbled across a girl performing aerial silk. She was winding down from her workout and routine, and I was tethered to an anxious dog, but I was captivated. I spoke with her about collaborating and we set a date for a shoot.
I’ve seen aerial silk before, but it wasn’t nearly as scenic as this location. A big tree, on a cliff, on the edge of the Pacific Ocean! I guess I could hope for dolphins to jump in the distance, but I was already confident that this was going to be a great session. Even fog couldn’t spoil this setting.
Sara rode her bike up, right on time and we both began setting up our gear. We hadn’t worked out too much in advance, so the whole thing was still rather spontaneous. She had the hardest part, and continued climbing and falling along the fabric as the light slowly turned golden hour. All I had to do was keep from stepping off the cliff as I moved around.
Wind generated power in Texas is something most Texans hear and read about, but don’t actually see. Most of the generators are far out of sight of major cities, nestled deep in cattle country. If you travel across the state, you’ll likely see hundreds of them.
I was driving through west Texas on my way to New Mexico, and I spotted a train loaded with blades for these generators. Each blade was the size of a rail car. A nice fit, actually! I thought it was interesting that the train’s history of pushing development to the west is still in use today. Even with greener long term goals of energy, the train is there to help us accomplish this. That, and it just looked cool!
After 2 1/2 days of cold rain and dark skies, a dry line passed over Austin friday afternoon. Saturday morning snapped open like a crisp, sunny Texas winter day. With blue skies and temps quickly climbing through the 50’s. The weekend was off to a great start and people were getting out, after being rained in for a few days. Continue reading Winter Rain and Bull Creek