January 5, 2013
Winter Rambles in York County
Despite the cold and wind and weak slanting sunshine, or perhaps to glory in it, we ventured out lately just across the Susquehanna River to explore some trails in York County, PA. The treacherous dusting of snow and ice precluded clambering about on rocky overlooks as is our usual practice, but we found much to admire and appreciate on the tamer terrain. These cattails were surrounded by a thin sheen of ice, and were captured perfectly by my trusty fisheye lens.
Above are some saplings, again surrounded by diaphanous ice, along a path in Rocky Ridge Park. Below, a view of the trail that beckoned.
Portions of the park were seasonally decorated and lit, to be toured at night for a fundraiser. I loved the surreal look of these gingerbread men cutouts:
Another day found us at the Heritage Rail Trail. This well maintained trail borders a set of tracks that still sees occasional traffic. A highlight for architectural aficionados is the Howard Tunnel, completed in 1840, and the oldest railroad tunnel in continuous use in the U.S. It’s listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. Here I am, all happy about discovering it:
The interior of the tunnel is a textural marvel, with the patina of old bricks and patches of repair:
A bit further along the trail is a footbridge that crosses the Codorus Creek.
It’s been damaged by recent high water.
Discretion being the better part of valor, I didn’t attempt a crossing.
As much as I’m enjoying photographically exploring form and line, and the contrasts and textures of this mostly monochromatic world, I am starting to hunger for color. I was glad to spot of bit of green in a patch of mulleins growing on a cliff face.
Mullein is a biennial, forming these big fuzzy rosettes of leaves in its first year from seed. Next summer they will send up seed stalks, as high as 6 feet, covered in small yellow flowers.
I hope that wherever find yourself in the world, and whatever the weather, you have a chance to go outside and explore.
As always, thanks for reading and commenting.