If a Tree Falls in the Forest…Tales of the Extraordinary
If a Tree Falls in the Forest, Ash Cave, Hocking Hills State Park, Logan, OH 2013
When you travel around natural wilderness enough, you are bound to see astonishing things every once in a while. When a baby Black Bear crossed in front of our car one night on a deserted North Carolina road it happened too quickly to photograph. Likewise with the thousand pound Moose I ran into at dusk in the woods of Colorado. That time I wasn’t even thinking about taking a picture, just how to get around him and get out of there in one piece.
So on those occasions that something wonderous occurs in nature and you do actually capture it photographically, that is something special. It’s not just a “Fisherman’s Tale,” there exists documented proof. Such was the case while shooting at Ash Cave in Hocking Hills State Park in Logan, Ohio. I was photographing the beautiful forest that surrounds the cave, alternating from Black and White to Color, in camera. Suddenly I heard a thunderous sound, as if a bolt of lightning had cracked to the ground right near me. First I ducked, a natural reaction, then, I lifted my camera in the direction of the sound and there, as it was happening, a huge tree, easily hundreds of years old, came crashing down…naturally. Now, it is unusual to be close enough to hear such a rare occurrence, let alone to see it. But to capture it as it happens, that is most likely a once in a lifetime event. I got off four shots as the tree came crashing down, the three consecutive images above were perfect, while the fourth, as it fell to the ground went out of focus. I created this Triptych to memorialize the wonderous moment.
Momentary Blizzard, Southeastern OH, 2013
Usually, I’m lucky if one memorable thing happens per shoot. During the same week in Ohio as the tree falling, we were driving down a rural road on a relatively clear, but cold winter day. Within minutes, the sky became dark and from nowhere came a Blizzard of snow so fierce that it caused a “whiteout” forcing me to pull over. We rolled down the window just enough to get off a few shots, and then, within less than a minute, it was over. The snow was gone and shortly thereafter the sky was clear again. That was the first time I had ever experienced a Momentary Blizzard.
The bottom line when it comes to Mother Nature, there is only one thing that is certain …she is absolutely unpredictable.