Seep

Visible Groundwater

The fascinating walls above the 224 steps of the Cliff Stairs are a constant wonder in all seasons.

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These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

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Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Gathered Light

Each wall is support for the next flight of stairs

I walked the Rim Trail after a sudden April frost.

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These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

Click for macro slideshow.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

224 Steps

Each wall is support for the next flight of stairs

The stairs are cut into a cliff, using switchbacks with landings and strategically placed benches.

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This work was accomplished by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930’s, during the Great Depression.

These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

Click for macro slideshow.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

So Like A Christmas Tree

Icicles Catch The Light

Approaching the Cliff Stair after a sudden April frost.

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Lucifer Falls in spring flood is a constant roar.

These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

Click for macro slideshow.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Through a Veil

A Hemlock Curtain

Early April the Gorge Trail along Lucifer Falls is closed, here we look up to the falls in flood from a safe distance.

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The Rim Trail gate to the Cliff Stairs is open. We are headed that way.

These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

Click for macro slideshow.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Ascent

Andrew Wyeth effect

Here the Rim Trail climbs out of the flats beneath the Cliff Stairs, away from Enfield Creek, onto the upper slopes of the gorge.

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Early spring snow highlights the path, threading between hemlocks. The American realistic painter Andrew Wyeth comes to mind with I see the mottled texture of this light snow. He captured some of this in landscape paintings such as “Snow Flurries.”

Here is more of this effect……

These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

Click for a slideshow of this Fertile Flats sequence.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Periwinkle

Source of life-saving drug

A broad, fertile flat between gorge walls supports a dense growth of invasive creeping myrtle. Springtime there is a sprinkling of small blue flowers, this may be the source of another name, periwinkle, or lesser periwinkle.

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Periwinkle is an evergreen and in early times vinca vine (another name we call it, from the scientific name Vinca Minor) was planted in graveyards and cemeteries. The isolated growth of vinca vine in this section of the gorge maybe from such a planting on a lost grave.

Today, the park practices leaving fallen trees in place, here they are covered in years of moss, a memory of headstones. Lesser Perriwinkle is significant for the living as the source of vincamine, from the leaves. A synthetic form of this compound is a potent vasodilator, a therapeutic treatment for stroke and other brain disorders.

These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

Source: Wikipedia, “Vinca Minor.”

Click for a slideshow of this Fertile Flats sequence.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Ephemeral

Amphibian haven, breeding place

Melting snow, spring rains, gather in hollows of the forest floor to form ephemeral pools important for the development of amphibian life.

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Also named vernal pools, from the Latin word for spring or the time of the equinox. The pools are ephemeral in the sense of being temporary, disappearing in the warmer, dryer late spring and summer months, a characteristic important for amphibian live in being devoid of predatory fish.

Here the pool forms on a flat beneath the walls of Enfield Gorge. Here is another photograph featuring the ephemeral winter theme, “The Cave.”

These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

Sources: Wikipedia, “Vernal Pool” and Merriam Webster online.

Click for a slideshow of a few photographs published recently.

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Sense of Scale

Humans dwarfed by the eons

Lack of reference leads to a confused impression of this torrent of water. An adult human, standing on the lower rock ledges, will be dwarfed by the surroundings.

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Lucifer Falls at moderate spring flood. The Gorge Trail is closed for the winter due to the danger of falling rock. The water volume can sweep an unwary hiker quickly over the brink.

The potential for fatalities is increased by black ice on the smooth slate walkways along the torrent. Can you spot the barrier blocking access to the path? I am at a secure perch at the falls overlook on the Rim Trail, opened at this season.

These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

Click for a slideshow of this Waterfall of the Old Mill sequence

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills

Gully vs. Ravine

I love the early spring light filtering through the hemlocks.

Rim trail traverses gullies. These creases in the gorge walls were formed by small streams flowing to Enfield Creek.

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Some passages require a wade, others have elaborate walkways with bridges. I initially wanted to call these ravines. Upon researching the term discovered while ravines are formed by erosion, the scale here is much smaller. I could rename Enfield Gorge, to Enfield Ravine.

These shots were hand held. I used a Sony Alpha 700 dslr with a variable “zoom” lens, great for framing compositions.

Robert H. Treman New York State Park.

Click for a slideshow of this Waterfall of the Old Mill sequence

Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved Michael Stephen Wills