|Peyto Lake in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada|
I've never been one for resolutions. Changes in my life tend to happen at the various times when the need for change becomes apparent and I try acting on them as a result. That being said, this is the closest thing I ever have to a resolution: this year, do something new and see a new place.
|Hurricane Ridge in Olympic National Park, Washington|
As I mentioned last year at this time, one of my favorite movies is the rarely seen Ollie Hopnoodle's Haven of Bliss. Never heard of it? That's a shame, because it was a gem of a movie, written by Jean Shepherd, who also wrote "Christmas Story", the classic tale of Ralphy and his quest to get hold of a Red Ryder BB Rifle ("You'll shoot your eye out!"). "Ollie Hopnoodle" follows the same characters a few years later as they take their family vacation. The thing is, they always went to the Haven of Bliss, a fishing lake up in Minnesota somewhere. Year after year. The story was great, but don't do that! Don't get caught up in sameness and habit!
|Nankoweap ruins in Grand Canyon National Park|
|The beginning of a river trip: Lees Ferry upstream of the Grand Canyon|
|Exploring the Grand Canyon and Colorado River, a defining experience in anyone's life|
At the last new year I had just begun to explore a whole new world just beyond my front porch. It started with a new camera that I used to take pictures of birds in the local pasture, but before long I had begun a new exploration of the natural heritage of the Great Valley: the millions and millions of migratory birds that call our valley home during the winter months. There are a series of wildlife refuges within a few minutes drive of my home where one can see huge flocks of geese, ducks, and cranes. The sight of so many majestic birds in flight is just stunning. I'm looking forward to finding new treasures this year.
|San Joaquin National Wildlife Refuge, near Modesto, California|
|Bald Eagle at Turlock Lake Recreational Area, just a few miles from my house. It's the closest I've ever been to one of these creatures (mind you, with a big zoom lens).|