Date Taken 6/27/06
Location: North Elba, NY
I'm am writing this blog post on my cell phone cruising at an altitude of 33,000ft. The destination is Albany, NY. Though I wish it was a happier occasion for my departure from Texas. My Aunt Becky ended her battle with cancer on 1/2/17. She fought boldly for two years and endured through and through. The last time I saw her was in 2014 when the whole family met up for a Family reunion in Elizabethtown, NY. This was before she knew about the cancer. It will be strange visiting her area without being there. I spent a few weeks with her back in 2005 and 2006. We went all around the Adirondacks photographing the local landscape and wildlife. It really is a beautiful place and I don't think I appreciated it as much as I should have. When I went those first times photography was still pretty new to me. I was used to walking around a small pond from my hometown for photography. It was sure different for this Texan to go into the wilderness that is the Adirondacks. But my guide couldn't have been better. Aunt Becky shared her love, passion, and extensive knowledge of the Adirondacks with me. And she helped me grow in passion for nature and photography. We'd start out our mornings waking before sunrise and driving to the lakes searching for Bald Eagles, Great Blue Herons, deer, and other wildlife. We watched the sunrise over Lake Champlain on a cold morning. She was a real trooper and she had the biggest smile on her face when she saw how happy I was with my photos. After the sunrise we moved on to photograph the amazing local waterfalls. Monument Falls, High Gorge Falls, Split Rock falls to name just a few. We also snapped photos of "The Grand Canyon of the East" Ausable Chasm. The Ausable river cuts through the sandstone rock and flows into Lake Champlain. This impressive gorge has spectacular views of the waterfalls and hydro electric mills on the cliffs. It's like something out of a postcard. After our waterfall shoot we explored some of the marshes and ponds in the area. There was one place in particular that really struck with me that wasn't a planned location. While driving towards Lake Placid we came across an open field and farmland. This was different from all the other landscape images I made. This one had an open wheat field and the Adirondack mountains in the background. A beautiful blue sky with thin cirrus clouds hung above the peaks. Algonquin peak was the most prominent mountain. The late afternoon light formed shadows along the mountain showing off the craggy summits. I snapped a few frames and got a decent result. I heard Becky come up behind me and she spoke, "South Meadow." That was all she said. I drank in the scenery in front of me and once I was satisfied we moved on to our next destination. I chose this image for the Pic of the Week in honor of my Aunt Becky. She was a wonderful woman and an excellent guide. It will be hard to let her go, but I now know she's in a much better place and I will be reunited with her in Heaven. I'm going to try to visit some of our old locations during this short trip and re-recorded with my newer equipment and finer photography skills. I'm hoping to immortalize her and our bond through these images. I love you Aunt Becky and may you rest in peace.