Fresh Tracks, Fresh Places

Golden hour in the snow; as seen from the New Jersey Pinelands' Pygmy Pine forest. Fresh tire tracks and stunted pitch pine trees are illuminated by sunlight and marked with snow in this landscape HDR photograph.
Fresh Tracks, Fresh Places — 14mm | f/8 | ISO 100 | 7 Bracketed Exposures

Hooray for change of venue. Particularly when said venue change is this good. Thanks for the suggestion, Ben Wurst!

For years—well over a decade—I’ve heard stories of the Top of the World. This so-called “high-point” ensconced amid the New Jersey Pinelands’ Pygmy Pine Forest. I use the term high-point loosely as there is essentially zero elevation here in Ocean County, New Jersey. Nevertheless, at this unique geographic confluence, dwarf pines—not much taller than my waist—sprawl toward the horizon in all directions from what amounts to a very gradual 30 or 40 foot high vantage point. Of course Sun Tzu has been teaching us the merits of having the high ground for thousands of years. If it works in war, why not photography?

Being this high up among trees so small forgot made for a surreal setting. Surreal in the best possible way. Seemingly perched as a giant atop a magical forest canopy, over the course of two hours I admired the sunlight as it did its golden hour into sunset and then blue hour thing. With each segment in time bringing a brand new vibe to my new surroundings.

You’ll see more of what I’m talking about tomorrow when I post my sunset shot from tonight. For now I leave you with an energized golden hour that worked its way down the trail from which I came. To execute this shot I had to get real small with my tripod off to the right corner so as not to cast my own shadow and compromise the shot. To give some perspective on just how small these trees are, that one in the foreground to the right, it stands at no more than seven feet tall. Towering over the rest, you can see the others struggle to make it merely half as high.

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2 responses to “Fresh Tracks, Fresh Places”

  1. […] I waxed poetic about this great new spot locals call Top of the World. New is of course in the relative sense insofar as it is new to me. […]

  2. […] already seen the golden hour and sunset renditions, so here is the third and final photograph from my first ever visit to the […]

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