Magical Minnesota Morn

Caught this early just outside Ely in north central Minnesota this morning. As you can see the autumn colours are fantastic, everywhere you go there's amazing trees everwhere, and today it was surprisingly warm, up around 80F. Tonite we had a late dessert on the balcony overlooking Lake Kabetogama as a spectacular full moon was rising....wait til you see those pics!
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First Day....First Picture

Been off the grid since Wednesday so have a lot of catching up to do....and this is the first image I took on the first day.....Gooseberry Falls on Lake Superior North Shore in Minnesota. A great start to the trip and I have some terrific images to show of the last few days from Isle Royale National Park in Michigan...look that up on google maps!
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Minneapolis at last

After 29 hours I'm sitting in a room in Elk River, on the banks of the Mississippi River...haven't seen the river yet, its nightime! But caught some nice sunset colour flying into Chicago. The real fun starts tomorrow...stay tuned!
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The Last Lake

....before we hit the road. This is from Sunday evening, some great skies moving in across Lake Wendouree.....thats all folks...tomorrow we head off to Minnesota, then Michigan, then Maine....so keep coming back to watch our travels unfold!
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The Canola Fields

I'm trying to fit in as much canola as I can before we leave on Monday morning...this one a bit different from the huge fields that are on display around the district. One more local post before we leave, then after that the next post should be from Minnesota!
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At the End of the Day

Out at Windermere on Friday evening, caught this group heading south just above the setting sun. They flew over me about 2 minutes earlier and I only realised after driving south myself that they were still travelling alongside so I jumped out of the car and fired off a few images.
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Loddon Falls

From Thursdays visit...a view of the main falls I missed on my last visit...seemed suited to black and white.
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The Big Sky II

I was out at Daylesford on Thursday so I thought I'd take the opportunity to visit Loddon Falls out at Glenlyon again. But this is not from that trip, those will have to wait! Later in the day here in Ballarat some great conditions developed over Lake Wendouree and here's a couple...more big skies...this makes  3 days in a row of big skies on 3 different lakes in the region. I wonder what today will bring!

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The Big Sky

Caught this out at Lake Learmonth late Tuesday afternoon. The still conditions saw the distant wind farm totally stopped, but you'd think with that streaky sky that there would have been a lot of wind around. Always a great place to stop on the way home when I'm out that way.
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Lake Burrumbeet II

....not to be forgotten....!
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Before the Fog

This is from dusk at Lake Burrumbeet....the pelicans are really helping my images there at the moment, and it was millpond smooth.
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Lydiard Street Fog

Something a bit different from Tuesday night here in Ballarat. I was out last night and caught this about 11pm in Lydiard Street, just outside the Art Gallery. The fog was no where to be seen earlier in the evening. and long gone in the morning. I did get some great images again from Lake Burrumbeet at sunset, I'll post those a bit later.
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A Range of Colours

I'm still chasing sunlight across the canola fields, but still no luck, but its challenging me to look for different approaches to what I usually do. This from Monday out at Windermere. We leave for our next USA trip next Monday so I'm determined to get some sunny canola before I go as it will most likely be finished by the time I get back.
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Looking for Canola

I went out again on Sunday afternoon hoping for some sunlight on the canola fields, but another grey day had me looking for other options, and I did manage to find another field of canola with quite a nice foreground element! On the west shores of Lake Burrumbeet.
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On the Yarrowee River

Here's another small falls I've come across on the Yarrowee River...this one I'm naming Chisholm Falls. Its at least a 2 foot drop so I think that counts as a waterfall, and the water action after it drops created some great textures. This is from Sunday morning - I did go out again later in the day and got some great, unique images from Lake Burrumbeet - coming soon!
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The Gong Gong Cascades

Its amazing to realise that you can find this sort of view less than 10km from home...this is out at the Gong Gong Reservoir, just downstream on the Yarrowee River. What I particularly like is the subtle blue reflection off the sky. I'm starting to name a few of these sites I've been visiting, I think they deserve it!
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The Canola House

Out to the Windermere Canola Fields again Friday - still grey and overcast but the colour is so strong. This old bluestone house sits in the middle of the paddock, I'm still trying to find out more about it and the name Nelson Springs refers to the spring that runs just in front of it. Must have a great history that I'm determined to discover.
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Trentham Falls II

The plan at Trentham Falls was to get down low as I showed in the previous post, however when I arrived and was making my way along the top trail, there was some great light through the trees, helped even further by the rising mist off the falls catching the sunbeams through the trees. As you can imagine I was pretty happy with this, and was tempted to just turn around and head home!
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The Hailstorm

Before I went off to Trentham Falls on Thursday afternoon, I managed to fit in a run around Lake Wendouree, and managed to time it just as a big hailstorm came through. On the north side I came across this great sight...and luckily I had my small (waterproof) camera with me. I've seen a lot of cygnets but this is the first time I'd witnessed something like this, and there were a few other cygnets tucked under dad's wings you can just make out in the top. To tell you the truth, I'm not really sure how many there were!
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Trentham Falls - Colour or Black & White?

On Thursday afternoon I made the trip over to Trentham Falls, about 22kms from Daylesford. Water levels far higher than my previous visit here when it was just a trickle, and though I got some nice images from higher up I knew I wanted to get down low looking up the Coliban River. I liked the original colour version, but then I tried a black and white version, hard to choose - please let me know your opinion!

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The Canola is Back!

With Spring comes the canola crops in the local Ballarat district, and on a grey evening out at WIndermere this lone palm tree sits amongst the new crop. I've photographed this palm quite regularly and its always nice to catch it in a new way.
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Spring Evening

Its been the warmest, sunniest start to spring for quite some time here in Ballarat. This was a nice reflection I captured off the jetty near Macarthur Street just after sunset on Tuesday.
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Upper Loddon Falls

As I mentioned in the previous post, there are some pretty nice smaller falls a few hundred metres upstream from the main Falls - this is one of them. Surely this deserves it own recognition....?!
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The Loddon Falls

On Monday I ventured a bit further afield to visit the Loddon Falls at Glenlyon - this location has been on my list for a very long time and I thought that whilst the water levels are up it was a good time to visit, especially as we are heading back to the USA in 2 weeks and by the time we get back things may have changed a lot. These falls on the Loddon River are only about 11km past Daylesford, so only about 57km from Ballarat, and just another example of the great scenic sights we have close at hand. The falls were much bigger and grander than I expected from my research, and are in 3 distinct levels. This is the top, and biggest level, but further downstream from this I got down to water level and I'll post some of those later. I actually found some really nice spots upstream as well, probably un-named, but I almost classify them as a waterfalls as they were over 30cm in height and quite wide - I must look up the official classification of a waterfall! And click on this for a larger look, too.
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Lake Sunset

After the field of colour in the afternoon, there was a pretty nice sunset at the Lake on Sunday.....
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The Field of Colour

On my run around Lake Wendouree on Sunday afternoon I noticed this great spread of daisies on the lawn on the west side near Fairyland, so I thought I'd better get back there before it all gets mowed away. 
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Granite Falls, again

After the visit to Millbrook Falls we then went down Granite Falls. Even in the 2 days since I was last there the water levels were up considerably, and the constant drizzle had saturated everything to really lift the colours......like I said previously, this location is something very special!
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Saturday's Expedition - Millbrook Falls

....was to find the the waterfall referred to as "Borumbeeta, Moorabool River, Victoria.  Sketched by Emma von Stieglitz in 1854." A friend and I had done some research based on an old 1857 County Plan that was marked "Small Cascades" on the Moorabool River near Millbrook. I had visited this spot a few weeks ago and only came across a few rocks in the river, but further downstream you can hear a tremendous roar behind the massive wall of blackberries, and Damian did a tremendous job slashing his way through, and down, to water level to a very impressive series of cascades. Very difficult to get a decent image with all the mess and overgrown trees, and the rain over the last 2 days had the water level surging, but once again a great feeling to be standing in a spot that probably hasn't seen anyone there for many, many years. And after all that, we have come to the conclusion that this wasn't the Borumbeeta Falls, the lie of the land just didn't seem to match up, now the search is on to track those falls down. On the way back to the car we were lucky to meet the owners of the land and they have told us of some great scenery further down the river that we hope to explore soon. 
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Fleeting Friday

I only managed 5 images on Friday, even with 2 trips up to Lake Wendouree. This is the only one that showed any real life, on the west side of the Lake. By the time I'd jumped out of the car I just managed to grab this, then it was gone......
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Granite Falls on the West Moorabool River

Here's another image from Thursday afternoon....I've seen a lot of great sights in my trips around the Ballarat district, but I'm hard pressed to find anything better than this.......some great late evening light was reflected off the clouds into the water making it even more special. This has to be my favourite for a long, long time.
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Upstream from Moorabool Falls

On Thursday afternoon I spent some time exploring the other side of the Moorabool River....and found some great views of the Falls, and further downstream some fantastic views of Granite Falls. But first, this very nice cascade is a few hundred metres upstream of the main Moorabool Falls. I'll get to the other images soon.....! And click on this for a larger look!
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Wonder at Windermere

On Wednesday afternoon I headed out west as the clouds looked the most interesting that way....and as I was driving out the Freeway toward Burrumbeet the clouds were looking great and it looked like a rainbow might be on the cards. And there it was.....and I had time to play around with a few compositions, this was my favourite.
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The First Fire of the Season

I was on the side of Mt Warrenheip on Tuesday evening right at sunset, and the sunlight sneaking through the trees lit up these grasses as though they were on fire. Hopefully this is the only type of grass fires we'll get this year.
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Lake in Black and White

Another image from Monday night...this looked pretty nice in colour, but black and white made it even better. 
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The Grotto

Another from Monday at Lake Burrumbeet. I've photographed this spot a number of times, this is the first time I've felt it was worth showing. The constantly changing water levels always make it worth while when wondering around the shore looking for new compositions.
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On The Rocks

Monday at Lake Burrumbeet. The day started very sunny again, its been an amazing start to spring, and luckily mid afternoon the clouds moved and presented really good conditions at the lake, and then a late burst of colour breaking through really added that extra element to this image.
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After Dusk

Lake Burrumbeet late on Sunday, well after sunset. No clouds again today, spring really has sprung here locally, but always nice to see what you can find with the rocks and shoreline.
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Spring has sprung

Spring has sprung,
The grass has rizz
I wonder where
the birdies izz.
First day of spring, I was out and about around the Botanical Gardens looking for new spring colour, but ended up catching the setting sun at Lake Wendouree, and this little guy really gave me the stare, and a big welcome to spring on a really lovely sunny day. And hi to Lyn from the Ballarat Camera Club, that I had a chat to as she was there catching the great conditions as well!
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Extraordinary.......

Extraordinary....... that's the only word I can use to describe Tuesdays sunrise. I was up early looking for the forecast fog on my way ...