Tuesday, December 6, 2011

(3) Colorado: Breakfast beauty... lunch, sunset, dinner

Yesterday was somewhat overcast and some really cold weather was blowing in by the time I took the picture of the mountain in the back yard - I mean chilly! I was all too grateful to be cosy inside with roast chicken and salads for dinner, a nice chunk of red velvet birthday cake for dessert and a hot shower! 

We certainly woke up to a beautiful morning! After an early breakfast we headed out to Mueller State Park, which we had stumbled across around sunset the previous day.

Standing here, breathing in the fresh morning air, I just wanted to reach for a thermos with hot coffee. I can't say I love coffee but I most certainly get caught up in the smell of coffee early in the morning. There is just something about the way it announces the break of day.
Standing here, if I closed my eyes I could imagine camping - people crawling out of tents, sleepy and bushy tailed, a tin kettle on the fire boiling water for morning coffee, getting the dish ready for bacon and eggs (cooked with gas), some sitting around the fire still wrapped in their sleeping bag, slowly thawing out to the tune of whispering voices and bird song. Those are some things that I smile about when I think of camping. OH! and an inflatable mattress!!

It is as if every living creature knows that sunrise is switching on the lights to a new day, giving you that warm feeling on your face which means it's time for breakfast.
Can you spot the deer, dear?
Imagine walking out of your front door, or crawling out of your tent in the morning and this is the first thing you see.
Here's looking at you, kid!
(From the movie Casablanca, 1942)
This gives you a really good idea of just how close to the deer you can come. The deer is wild but you are not allowed to hunt them inside the Park. I think they've become very used to people but it is clear that the instinct of a wild animal is still very much present - a good thing, I'd say. 

"Don't be fooled, I've got my eye on you, buddy." (In fact, Both eyes!)
I can't see for sure through the grass but it really looks to me like this deer is watching G the whole time while eating. He is not letting his guard down. I thought it was really cool watching his behavior. Animals are very clever. I think sometimes we lose sight of just how clever. The only way I have the heart to shoot an animal is with a camera.  

If I have to be honest I have to say that this picture idea was not my own but the picture is and, in my opinion, it is a b-e-a-u-t-i-ful picture indeed! I absolutely love the contrast of the yellow leaves against the blue sky. Since I've taken this picture I've seen a few breathtaking ones based on the same concept of looking up into the trees. 
Later in the afternoon we hiked one of the trails to see if we could photograph a good sunset. This was the view before sunset.
Can a dead tree consume so much of my attention span? I tried photographing this tree - wanting to make a photograph of a picture. I felt like I failed miserably as I tried different light settings, different angles and different auto settings on the camera.
Finally I settled my mind on this one; not the perfect one, but the best one of the lot... I thought. (Maybe more so for the person sitting there than the tree...)
A photographer's paradise
I don't want to overload you and dilute this wonderful experience, so I'm going to call it a day before the end of the day. Tomorrow we meet some more interesting characters: some two- and some four legged; some with fur, some with feathers and some with skin. You don't want to miss it!

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