Weak day of shooting, nice day of outings

April 1, 2009

Tuesday was a bust photographically in not one, but two different sites.

In the early afternoon I hit Lake Shenandoah and little besides a few small birds seemed to be in the area. The loon I had photographed previously was still out and about but not its older counterparts. I also bumped into another nature lover and reader of this site (hello!). After a single loop of the lake route, I headed out without many results.

During the afternoon, I met up with David, another photographer, and we headed out to Shenandoah National Park. I was still riding high on the previous encounter with a bobcat so I was hoping for some more magic. Repeating the same route in the Central District, we noticed little wildlife until nearing Big Meadows when the deer began popping out of the woodwork. We did also notice one hawk, but it swooped in front of the car and didn’t stick around to be photographed or definitively identified.

Shortly below Tanner’s Ridge Overlook, a few turkey vultures caught our eye including a few on the ground off the roadway. They were spooked as we approached, but they had been visiting a roadkill bear. I hate to see an animal like that, but it was interesting to be able to see the paws and texture of the hair at close range.

For a few minutes, we set up a stakeout on the other side of the road to see if the vultures would return. They did not.

In Big Meadows, we parked near the campsite and walked some of the trails down toward Byrd Visitor Center before heading back up. I’ve had a lot of luck in that area in the past but alas, nothing besides deer on this outing.

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Hoping to improve my chances on the way out of the park, I headed into a South District for a few minutes, but even that was a bust.

Some days I’ll be inundated with great opportunities and then on others I won’t be able to aim my camera once. That’s just another part of this tricky project. But I’m still glad I went out. You never know unless you try.

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