Wednesday, September 30, 2009

"backpacking" 5: final images

Ok, so I have done way to many posts on this “backpacking” trip that Sarah and I went on to Pattison State Park. So here are the more artistic, beginning of fall, colors, and detail images that are left to be posted. If you are still wanting more you can view all the images I have posted and several more here.

Monday, September 28, 2009

"backpacking" 4: chocolate water

One of the draws to Pasttison State Park is that it has one of the largest waterfalls in Wisconsin…wait, hold on, Matt is doing a little research…the largest waterfall in Wisconsin and the 4th highest east of the rocky mountains; that is 165 feet. (Now, it is a little stretch because it is a cascading fall, meaning it has a couple levels but all next to each other, but still it is big.) It has really interesting Geology that I will not bore you with here, but the jist is that there was a shelf created by an earthquake that allowed such a drop. The other interesting Geological fact is that the topsoil (deposited a long time ago under an ocean) has minerals in it that make the water run red. So in effect it is like looking at Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’s sea of Chocolate! Kinda cool. We camped right alongside the river and heard it all night…and best of all, no mosquitoes!!! Do they not like chocolate?

We also drove just a little ways up to see Lake Superior. Now that is a big lake! Can’t see the other side and actually felt like an ocean! In true Great Lakes Fashion, Sarah and I found a lighthouse and walked out to it.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

birthday with 7 women

It was Sarah’s idea that I spend my birthday with 7 other women…well kinda. A Harry Potter exhibit was/is/about-to-not-be showing at the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry and we got a group of 8 of us together to go down to see it. The funny thing was that only these 7 ladies and I could make it, so despite the fact that I know there were guys out there that wanted to but couldn’t, I spent my birthday with a group of ladies. Anyway, the Museum was more than we could see but we pursued the Transportation wing before our Harry Potter entry time. After the exhibit we also wondered around trying to see as much as we could, which included this awesome German Sup from WWII. (I just love how it was lit, like it was actually underwater! In fact, the entire Museum was well lit, even for low light photography, amazing!) If you have seen the movie U-571, I think it was based on this U-505 German Sub that was capture.

Unfortunately the Harry Potter Exhibit didn’t allow photography, but it was still…neat… mostly a lot of costumes. A friend did photos and a video for USA Today that you could check out if you want images. After we went and had dinner in China town, great food and fun all around; and in my mind better photography opportunities. (click on the last one for a larger view and a great expression.) I think we will be doing this again sometime, we didn’t get our fill.

Monday, September 21, 2009

"backpacking" 3: a shortcut to mushrooms

On the first hike in to camp we ran into mushrooms. Now, not just any mushrooms, but the most colorful types that we had only seen in cartoons like the Smurfs. This first one just made us laugh because we had no idea they could actually look like this. Sarah challenged me to do a very informal photo shoot of different mushrooms just for kicks, she really likes her mushrooms. And for those that also love mushrooms (you reading this Erin?) Wisconsin has just another quirky thing to offer you that Cali doesn’t.

Extra points to anyone who got the Lord of the Rings reference in the title…

Saturday, September 19, 2009

"backpacking" 2: campsite

I grew up camping for several weeks at a time every summer. We would drive Grandpa’s fully loaded Suburban pulling a trailer full of gear (and many times another car or two) all day out to our remote family campsite…so I was eager to try camping out of just what we could carry, mind you it was 4 days, and not 4 weeks. We didn’t go out and get a lot of gear like I wanted to (well, except my new sleeping bag, I hate mummy bags but I finally found a stretchy MontBell bag I like…oops sorry, I digress) instead, we tried to use the stuff we had, but one thing we didn’t have at all was a backpacking stove, we got this slick little alcohol burning stove! Yah, you just burn denatured alcohol, or for those that know what it is, we burned HEET to boil water for our dehydrated food, morning coffee and evening hot chocolate. It was nice to have a very simple campsite…I was even a little disappointed thought that they provided not just one but two benches.