Thursday, April 21, 2011

Spring Takes a Break

Over the last couple of weeks the weather in Central Wisconsin has swung wildly from one extreme to the other. Regardless, spring is coming and will not be denied. Last weekend we had freezing rain.

Tuesday morning the same tree had shed the ice but some snow had found its way to many of its branches.

For years many photographers use a technique of coloring portions of a black and white photo to put emphasis on a certain aspect of an image. Photoshop and the digital age has made this easy to do to the point it has become gimicky. Several factors came into play with this image, the least of which, Photoshop.


One day a couple of weeks ago that taste of spring led to temperatures in the seventies and the sky filled with thunderheads in the distance.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Snow Tunnel

I had made a trail in the back yard this winter so I could easily access firewood. I used our snow-blower to keep this trail open and large enough to get a wheel barrow to and from the wood pile.  The wood trail  ran almost like a maze through the backyard.  The trail had a couple of inches of snow on it, while everything else was covered by drifts and accumulated snow. One day, a couple of months ago, while sitting at the computer next to a window that looks out onto the backyard, I saw a couple of ground squirrels running back and forth along the trail. They played in and around the firs in the backyard chasing one another. As they ran down the trail, I watched them disappear into a small hole in the snow along the trail. Today, as I did some work in the yard removing dead limbs and raking leaves where the snow has receded. This is what I found.

The opening is about three to four inches across and about the same in height. There are a couple of other tunnels that I am sure connect in the remaining snow. Sad to see all of their hard work melt but I am sure they are ready for spring too.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


Yesterday, I was invited to Maplewood Gardens in Elderon, Wisconsin where owner, David Peterson was making maple syrup. It was a great to watch and learn as Peterson made, the best maple syrup I have ever tasted.

Buckets hang on tapped maple trees gathering sap in a small stand of woods located on Peterson's property.

Sap is collected, then put into a larger holding tank.

Sap is then pumped into another holding tank, where gravity can allow the sap flow easier into the boiler inside the shack.

Maplewood Garden Owner, David Peterson prepares to take a sample of syrup to check to concentration of sugar in the syrup as it is boiled down from the sap.

 Peterson uses a hydrometer to check the sugar concentration level.


The aroma coming from the shack was intoxicating.