Another Photo Safari Report! This one was filled with surprises and adventures from top to bottom. Exciting!
I will begin at the beginning. Always a good place to start. (to paraphrase Mary Poppins) As everyone who reads this knows, my vision is now far-sided. I can see far away things just a clear as crystal but close up things are a blurry mess. That includes taking pictures. So whenever Joy and I are hiking, I have a pair of "readers" nearby. They might be perched on top of my head, on top of my hat (assuming I'm intelligent enough to be wearing one), tucked into the neck of my teeshirt, or just pulled forward on my nose so I can see overtop of them when not taking a photo. They are essential to photography for me. Or at least essential to halfway decent photography.
So now knowing that, picture this. As soon as we arrived at the preserve, we both get out of the car (of course). Joy goes into the backseat to get her camera and select her lens choice for the day. I stayed just outside the front seat carefully getting out my camera, cleaning the lenses, AND getting out my reader glasses. The readers are so important that I actually have a special zippy glasses case that hooks onto my camera bag that Tim bought for me. It's Awesome!
As I unzipped the glasses case, somehow I fumbled the actual glasses and they fell to the ground and broke. And I mean really broke. The frame broke on both sides, the lenses fell out and well damnit, that's that. Now I have no glasses for shooting that day. Crap.
When I stopped laughing I told Joy that I guessed I was going to be taking a lot of long shots that day! And we set out on the trails with that in mind. Joy would worry about the macro's and the detail shots. I would be responsible for landscapes and such. Things much harder to screw up. We had a plan.
And that's how we started out. And it was going pretty well actually.
Most of the long shots came out okay. I still couldn't see what I was snapping through the viewfinder of the camera, but luck was on my side. Of course it couldn't last. Eventually I felt compelled to try to capture other things. Smaller things. Adorable things. Those didn't come out nearly as well. As you can see:
The bigger surprise were the ones that DID turn out pretty good, even though I couldn't really see what I was doing!
So there was that unexpected issue. And then there was the next surprise part where so many trails were flooded. No idea why. Other than a brief, maybe 10 minute rainstorm the day before, we haven't had rain in a few weeks. So what the actual heck? It means we were back to hopping over narrow streams, slogging through wider ones, building frond bridges over even wider spots and a few times, doubling back and circling around. Dang!
And of course, because it was so wet, it was also buggy. Both buggy and boggy. The gnats are merely annoying, the mosquitos were viscious. Joy was nearly chewed to bits in spite of her long sleeves and industrial strength bug spray application!!! Poor thing.
We also saw a lot of hog sign. Never makes me happy to see hog sign. It looks like someone came through with a rototiller. It looks, in fact, like this:
So we watched and listened very carefully, ever alert for actual feral hogs. They are not nice! We want to avoid them entirely. And we managed to do so right up until we were about to leave. It was a small group of 3 ginger coloured oinkers:
Never fear. I'm not entirely stupid. I took this pictures from the safety of the INSIDE of the car.
So I guess that was pretty much it. Broke my glasses, took a lot of blurry photos , there was a lot of water to deal with, devil-spawned mosquitos, and feral hogs. It was a hike full of adventures! Oh yeah, and a few other photos.
Tomorrow we will hit the trails once again. It'll be much cooler out (we are having a cold snap, which for Florida means lows in the 40's and highs in the 60's) but hopefully drier, with fewer mosquitos and no broken spectacles!
A safari report, naturally, will eventually follow
Have a great day ya'll.
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.