THE SHIMMERING MAITLAND RIVER OFFERS A BACKGROUND TO AUTUMN'S COLORFUL SPLENDOR
When I have to shove my hands into my pockets to keep them warm on our morning walks I know Autumn is slowly making it's way towards winter. Frost advisories will soon be in the weather forecasts & I just made a note to myself to put an ice scraper in the Jeep for scraping that early morning frost off the windshield. The season is marching on.
I AM HEADED FOR THAT RAILWAY BRIDGE IN THE BACKGROUND...I will then turn left into that forest of trees & make my way along the north shore of the Maitland River ending up at that Salt Mine complex by the lake.
IT WAS A DARK, COLORFUL FOREST
I have been aware for some time that the muscles in my legs have been getting soft from not being used or exercised this past summer so with that thought in mind I threw the cameras in the Jeep & headed off to Goderich for a hike along the Maitland River. A cool sunny morning lent itself to a fine Autumn day for photos. But, I made a classic photography error. I always carry a polarizing filter in my bag but seldom use it because I normally forget I have it. This morning, I remembered that filter & new it would be a good day to use it for color saturation. It simply screws onto the front of my lens & it was here that my absent mind made it's mistake. I forgot I already had a filter on the lens. It's standard practice to use UV (ultra violet) filters on lenses. Helps cut down on haze but more important than that, it protects the front element glass lens from scratches or being broken. Much cheaper & easier to replace a $20 filter than a three or four hundred dollar lens.
OVERHEAD, A TALL CANOPY OF TREES
By screwing my polarizing filter on top of my UV filter it extended the filters out too far. When shooting at an 18mm wide angle setting, vignetting occurs & you can see the result of that in some of today's photos. The wide angle setting actually catches the rim of the filter & that is the dark round corners you see in the photographs. Same result can happen with an ill sized lens hood as well. I should have caught the double filter error in the view finder.......but I didn't!!
FIERY SUMAC'S ALONG THE TRAIL
My hike took me across an old railroad bridge high above the Maitland River which enters into Lake Huron alongside Goderich's Sifto Salt Mine complex. The bridge has been completely refurbished & connected in with the Maitland trail on it's north side. Wooden planking has been laid down along with railings on both sides of the bridge.
From high atop the trestle one has a scenic view of a nearby golf course below, fishermen in the river to the east & the Goderich Salt Mine complex backgrounded by Lake Huron. To the south are the Church spires in the town of Goderich & to the north lay the early changing colors of Maple & Oak trees lining the river banks & rising a hundred feet up a sloping densely forested hill.
GODERICH'S SIFTO SALT MINE COMPLEX AT THE MOUTH OF THE MAITLAND RIVER
With camera's in hand I sauntered across the bridge taking a few photos & enjoying the brisk wind coming in off the lake about two thirds of a mile down river to the west. Made a left turn onto a forested trail at the north end of the bridge & headed in the direction of the lake. I was immediately aware of the comforting hard wood forest smells. Forest leaves in the Autumn have a smell all their own which is just as pleasing to the senses as the visual aspect of the colored leaves overhead.
THIS WOODEN WALK WAY IS BUILT ALONG THE RAIL BED WHERE TRAINS USED TO RUN
A LONE FISHERMAN IN THE MAITLAND RIVER
The hard packed earthen trail led through dark stands of Cedar trees, tall Oaks, Maples & Beachwood trees. Occasional glimpses of the Maitland River below to the left gave me an opportunity for a few creative photos. No people on the trail so that made for a most enjoyably quiet walk.
Upon reaching the lake I was surprised to see a complete inland Marina area for docking boats. Just hadn't been aware of boat docking facilities on that side of the river before. I just love coming across things I have never seen before.
A SAFE & SNUG HARBOR FOR SMALL CRAFT
While taking some photos of landing flocks of Geese I could hear men shouting on the other side of the river at the Salt Mine complex. Couldn't figure out where the voices were coming from until I looked up along the roof line of a very large building. Workman were on some kind of platform putting on what appeared to be a vinyl or rubber roofing material on a very, very, steep roof. It was the men shouting back & forth to the ground crew I had heard. Sure takes some kind of special person to do a dangerous job like that.
LOOK CLOSELY ALONG THE ROOF LINE
NOPE, NOT MY KINDA JOB!!!!
Took me about 40 minutes to get my tired legs back to the Jeep but what a great feeling it was to be out along a new forest trail again. I am so glad the heat of summer is gone & outdoor activities are once again back in the realm of feasibility:))
SIFTO'S SALT MINE ABOVE GROUND COMPLEX.....Kelly & I were actually fortunate enough to tour this underground salt mine back in the mid 90's & it is actually bigger underground than it is above ground. This Sifto salt mine is the largest in the world.
Salt mine links...
GROANER'S CORNER:(( And a few words about aging.............
- I'm retired....I was tired yesterday & I'm tired again today!!
- Senility aint' bad....I wrap my own Christmas presents & never watch re-runs. I can hide my own Easter eggs & I get to meet new people every day.
- I am young at heart.....& slightly older in other places.
- Goodbye tension.....hello pension!!
Tourists see the world, travelers experience it.
Until one has loved an Animal, part of their soul remains un-awakened.
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The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right now...... AL.