Pure Nature

Bird’s Eye View

Early November trees, Taughannock Gorge, Finger Lakes Region, New York State walking the South Rim Trail we are among the upper reaches of trees clinging to the steep gorge walls.

Happy Birthday to my dear wife Pam.

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Two Views

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Distant View

I am fascinated by this vantage from the South Rim trail. It is possible because the gorge bends almost 90 degrees, the gorge walls fall away to reveal the 215 foot waterfall.

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Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Three Sisters

On viewing this photograph my wife, Pam, noticed the shapes eroded from the sedimentary rock of Taughannock gorge. These layers of shale, sandstone, siltstone formed at the bottom of a broad, shallow sea over 380 million years ago. Differential wearing of these rock layers, clearly visible in this photograph, resulted in these formations, including the three sisters and overhangs.

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Three Views from The Bend

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Zoom In

View from The Bend

Oaks are the last to release leaves, seen here on an early November afternoon.

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Views from The Bend

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

The Bend

Standing on the South Rim trail where the gorge bends almost 90 degrees, changing from a northern to eastern flow. The creek is flowing toward the camera, the falls out of view, upper left. Lower left two people walk the 3/4 mile trail of the falls.

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Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Distant Sapphire III

blue sky reflected in lake waters

Cayuga Lake from the south rim of Taughannock Gorge, seen through a veil of hemlock and oak. From a place of rest with a comfortable bench. The trail descends to the lake, here we are lower and closer to Cayuga Lake.

I stood in front of the bench, resting the camera body on the fence and braced with my fingers.

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A gallery of the three Cayuga Lake photographs for comparison.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Gorge Jewels

“J” trees and a charming weed

Friday last Pam and I joined a “James Potorti Memorial Gorge Walk” through Buttermilk Falls State Park where we learned interesting facts connected to one of my most successful photographs, “Summer Dream: Buttermilk Falls.” This is the fifth and final post of this series.

Final Photograph of my “Creek Views” post — not waterfall in distance

Upper Buttermilk Gorge Trail

Below is a photograph of that distant waterfall. Taken using a tripod mounted Canon EOS 1DS Mark III body with the Canon lens EF 24mm f/1.4L II USM w/a neutral density filter (0.6 as I recall) it is from an early morning solo walk, July 2018.

This photograph is one of a series from that day. Here is a link to my waterfall photographs on Getty IStock, including the series captured on that July 2018 morning.

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Natural steps

J Tree

A characteristic of Finger Lakes Gorges is a constant infall from fragile sedimentary walls. Tree roots hold the slopes in place until the inevitable slippage. Tree trunks bear the mark, as you can see from tree to the right of the steps. Slippage moves the trunk horizontal, subsequent growth toward the sun curves the trunk. In extreme cases the tree forms the shape of an umbrella handle.

More examples of this slippage are seen on the right creek bank in the following photograph from my post of this series, “Creek Views.”

More curved trees

Impatiens capensis

Emerging from the gorge, soil accumulates on narrow shelves where this Jewelweed plant grows. Here we leave the gorge for now.

(Impatiens capensis) growing along the upper portion of the Buttermilk Sate Park Gorge Trail in early September, just after Labor Day. This photograph shows the plant growth pattern and the surrounding environment.
(Impatiens capensis) growing along the upper portion of the Buttermilk Sate Park Gorge Trail in early September, just after Labor Day. This photograph shows the plant growth pattern and the surrounding environment.

In Memorium

James Potorti was a native of Ithaca who perished at 52 years of age in New York City on September 11, 2001 were he worked on the 96th floor of 1 World Trade Center.

Click me for the first post, “Finger Lakes Water Chemistry.”
Copyright 2019, Michael Stephen Wills All Rights Reserved