Saturday, December 5, 2015

Grapevine Lake: December 5, 2015

I was surprised and pleased to see that fall had arrived in full force in North Texas while we were in Europe over Thanksgiving. Foliage was turning everywhere you looked. Unfortunately, fall weather had also arrived -- chilly, damp weather that was no fun to shoot in.

Good news came this weekend, with warm temperatures and clear skies in the forecast. So I made plans to nose around the northeast shore of Grapevine Lake with a buddy to see what shots we could find.

Grapevine Lake Sunrise
The skies were so clear that the sunrise didn't necessarily have the drama it could have. But the colors before the sun crested the horizon were still nice.

Grapevine Lake Sunrise
I realized that where I initially set up I wouldn't actually have a clear view of the sun.  So I quickly moved and recomposed just in time to catch the first golden rays over the trees.

Grapevine Lake Sunrise
Radiant side light bathed the trees on the shore in a warm glow.

Grapevine Lake Flooding
The wet weather over Thanksgiving week had once again resulted in some flooding.  Trails were not completely passable in many spots.  But the high water did result in some rare reflections, and even a bit of mist that gave this area the appearance of a bayou.

Grapevine Lake Foliage
Red leaves were more rare to see than yellows and browns, and always called attention to themselves when they did show up.

Grapevine Lake Foliage
The cottonwoods seemed to be the staunchest holdouts, still fully leafed out and only just beginning to change from green to gold.

Grapevine Lake Foliage
I spent a fair amount of time working my way through thorny vines to find a spot with an unobstructed view of this tree and its vivid reflection.

Grapevine Lake
I shot these golden mushrooms with both my zoom and wide angle lenses, fully expecting that I'd prefer what I got using the wide angle lens with a polarizing filter on a tripod.  Instead, I ended up liking this one that I took handheld without a filter better.  Go figure.

Grapevine Lake Flooding
Our little hike came to an abrupt end at a section of trail that seemed to run right into a small lake.  At least the water once again provided some striking reflections, couple with some foreground rocks that add a leading line into the scene.

Cedar Waxwings, Grapevine Lake
My friend recognized the call of Cedar Waxwings, so we looked around trying to find them.  Lo and behold, a small flock was greedily devouring all the berries on a tree on the other side of the temporary lake.  That unfortunately meant I couldn't get as close as I would have liked to shoot them.  But honestly, I can never get quite as close as I'd like. :)

We spent three hours wandering around, seeing plenty of signs of deer, coyote, and armadillo activity but sadly not the animals themselves.  Still, it was good to get a taste of fall before the leaves are all of the trees and winter is officially upon us!


Tree Care NY said...

Incredibly beautiful photos! Thank you for sharing.
If you find that your trees are beginning to look frail, look into tree trimming queens.

SteveHarbula said...

Thank you so much for the kind words! We actually live in Texas, so if we have frail trees I don't think you'll be able to be of much help. :)