Moving away from the pond was wrenching, but the time had come. Keeping up the house and yard had become more and more difficult.

Just as important, I found myself photographing the same subjects over and over again. Now, I look forward to new challenges.

My apologies for the long hiatus, but I had so much to do, not least finding a new place to live, and coincidentally, learning to use some new equipment and software.

There will be more photos, either in this blog, or an entirely new one, or both. I haven’t decided yet.

Many thanks to all my friends and neighbors for their kind support and comments over the years.

All three of these dawn photos were recorded during the final week of November, 2014. They are among the last photos I took at the pond. Cursor over each for a description.

Related: Four Local Dawns*

 

Our City Council’s Public Works Committee met on Monday November 3, 2014, and among other topics, discussed the Hardy Pond outlet or “discharge” channel. As I’ve argued strenuously in this blog, the channel is dangerously silted, and does not have the surge capacity to relieve flood waters. Two engineering studies, eight years apart, have called for it to be cleaned out. The more recent, in 2010, recommended “restoration of the full channel cross section” (which is a euphemism for that dreaded word, dredging).

In attendance were the city engineer and public works director. The latter reported that his crew removed debris and stepping stones from the channel, this past summer.

Yes, you read that right! Stepping stones! That speaks to how high the silt has become. No doubt some teenagers had put the stepping stones in the shallow water so they could walk across the channel, giving themselves a shortcut home — one that had become well worn from much use.

The city engineer described his recent success in helping an abutter on the south side of the channel clean up a source of silt run-off. Yet to be addressed, he reported, is a second source of silt on the north bank. Both sites are at point (1) on the aerial view, above.

The aerial view was provided by the City Engineer. It documents his walking tour, this past summer, of the outlet channel and of Chester Brook that it drains into. The channel runs west to east across the top of the frame, while Chester Brook runs north to south, just west of, and parallel to, Lexington Street at the far right. Click the image for greater detail, and click the back arrow to return.

Neither official talked about dredging of the channel, a major project, and one that must be approved by the mayor. But the city engineer did promise to make a more thorough survey of conditions from point (1) on the channel down to point (6) on Chester Brook, with a view to possible action next spring. He promised to keep the Committee apprised of his progress.

Related: High Water*, High Water II*, High Water III.

 

A “local dawn” is my shorthand term for a dawn sky in which most of the clouds are nearby or overhead, rather than far away, over the horizon. As you can see, such local dawn displays can be lovely indeed.

Frankly, though, I’m partial to the “distant dawns,” which are often more dramatic. They are also more often seen in the cold months of November, December and January, when the sun rises in the southeast, at or near its lowest point in the sky.

The last dawn in the sequence, “Ominous” (at the top), fits neither description fully—it’s a little of both, a hybrid.

Although relatively near, “local” clouds are still high enough to catch the early rays of the sun before we earth-bound humans can see them.

When the rising sun first tops the distant horizon, its rays are nearly parallel—or more accurately, tangent—to the earth’s curved surface, thus hitting some clouds edgewise, producing the intense, illuminated colors we so often admire. The second dawn in the sequence, “Minimal,” demonstrates this effect.

All four photos were taken in October, 2014. All four look toward the east-southeast, almost directly across the pond from my window. Click an image to view it full screen, and click the back arrow to return. Cursor over each for a description.

Related: Cold Dawns 2013-14* (a post showing both local and distant dawns).

 

Early one morning, recently, I looked out an east-facing window and saw a large spider sitting dead center on a perfect web. I could clearly see the half-dollar-sized arachnid through the glass, but neither of my cameras would focus on it, homing in, instead, on the intervening window screen.

So, I went outside, stood on a patio chair, and took this closeup of its underside. The low, early sun lit the spider like a studio lamp. The next morning when I glanced out, it was gone, web and all.

I captured this bristling creature—digitally—on September 29, 2014, at 7:45 am. On my computer screen, it looks about three times actual size. I searched online, but was unable to find any identifying references.

Click the image to view it full screen, and click the back arrow to return.

Related: Spider on Strand*

 

After Peeping Dawn | October 8, 2014, 7:47 am

Peeping Dawn | October 8, 2014, 7:12 am

Astronomical sunrise occurred at 6:48 am. Twenty-four minutes later, at 7:12 am, the sun peeped above the high ridge along the eastern shore. That long delay for the sun to top the ridge will shorten with the passing weeks, as the sunrise moves southerly to a lower part of the ridge. This day, the sun rose directly opposite my window, at east-southeast. It was October 8, 2014.

Thirty-five minutes later, glancing out the window, I happened to catch this magnificent, post-dawn cloud formation – a cloud head devouring the sun. It was too good to pass up.

Click an image to view it full screen, and click the back arrow to return. Cursor over an image for a description.

Related: Cold Dawns 2013-14*.

 

Lava Dawn | September 29, 2014, 6:42 am

This richly colored, high-altitude display was the second, stunning dawn in two days, coming right after September Dawn*, a rapid repetition I hadn’t seen before in the warm month of September.

This vivid, fiery formation reminded me of flowing lava. Increasingly, I’ve had trouble finding names for these dawn spectacles. “Molten Dawn” I had already used, so I settled on simply, “Lava.”

The date was September 29, 2014, and the time, 6:42 am. The sun was still hidden behind the high ridge along the eastern shore. Astronomical sunrise had just occurred, three minutes earlier, at 6:39 am.

Click the image to view it full screen, and click the back arrow to return.

Related: Wildfire Dawn*, Orange Dawn, Fiery June Dawn*