Blueberry barrens

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More from my recent drive down east. Maine is famous for its blueberry harvest… in fact, Maine’s 60,000 acres of blueberry fields produced 83.1 million pounds of berries in 2011. Much of the land near the coast of Maine is acidic and largely un-fertile, though indigenous blueberries seem to thrive in what can best be described as difficult growing and seasonal conditions. At this time of year, even before the berries start to show, the hardy barrens are a pretty striking sight, but when late summer and then the fall rolls around, the predominant color on the ground changes to a deep, deep red, and the view becomes absolutely stunning. Buzzing along the road, the winding dirt road leading through the blueberry barren caught my eye, and as always, I listened to the little voice in my head and turned the car around to stop and make a photograph. Not a Pulitzer prize winner, but I’m a big believer in taking every opportunity to practice whatever it is you enjoy doing. Getting better at anything isn’t easy, and you aren’t going to improve without doing… so I did.

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A triple play

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I recently made the drive to downeast Maine for a work event, and in doing so I used Route 9, a road known locally as the “airline”. I’m not entirely sure why it’s called the airline, but it probably has something to do with how much quicker people drive on it than other local routes. Fast-moving two way-traffic, winding up and downs, and around the corner twists and turns all the way, this stretch of road is notorious for accidents… both of the car-to-car, and car-to-wildlife variety. The road to Calais and/or Machias is one of the more rural parts of Maine, and it was no surprise that on this particular morning drive I spotted Moose hanging out near the side of the road on two separate occasions.

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About half way to my destination, as I was speeding past a primitive rest stop, a large grove of trees off to the side of the road caught my eye. There was a strange and eerie uniformity in how the trees were arranged, and although these were likely planted intentionally, there was still something quite unique about the scene they created. I turned the car around, parked in the lay by, and made a couple of photographs with my iPhone. I’m a sucker for trees, and even more so when there are large numbers of them grouped together like there were here. So… here’s the scene three ways… black and white, straight color,¬†and an in-camera movement shot… a triple play.

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