Regular Life

Regular Life

In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on. – Robert Frost

Not Mere Woods

Nope, it’s Muir Woods. Pronounced the same, but spelled diffurnt.

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Click pic to enlarge and sharpen. Download wallpaper here.

Named after naturalist and conservationist John Muir, this forest just outside San Francisco is beset with the most majestic trees I could hope to see. They’re so tall and so dense (in most areas) that their canopy allows no more light than required by the smallest undergrowth. Everywhere I looked, I got the feeling I was in nature’s cathedral.

It’s easy to feel that way when I read, “the tallest tree in the Muir Woods is 258 feet (79 m). The average age of the redwoods in the Monument are between 500 and 800 years old with the oldest being at least 1,100 years old.”

It still blows my mind to think of a tourist who ambled about 50 yards from his group’s packed charter bus and said, “It’s just gonna be more trees, right? I’m going back to my seat.”

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Click pic to enlarge and sharpen. Download wallpaper here.

This shot is a photo “sandwich” of two pictures I took — one with a blown out background, the other with a silhouette foreground. Even though I shot them from exactly the same tripod position, I couldn’t quite make everything match up precisely after I scanned them from transparency (slide) film.

Which, I think, made a nice effect. The needles are affected more because there was a slight breeze that day, and I couldn’t coax them to get back in the same place for all my exposures.

For those interested, Muir was born in Scotland and moved to the U.S., where he dedicated his life to saving natural places, most notably California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains (he founded the Sierra Club).

Many more of my San Francisco trip pictures are available for viewing in my album on pbase.com. Pictures from other events and locales are there as well using the links near the top of the album page, to the right of my name. If you look at them now, however, just be forewarned — you may see them here at some point.

8 Responses to Not Mere Woods

  1. What an interesting post and these photos are amazing Mark. Those darn needles…and that breeze! They never cooperate! :) Despite all that, these are wonderful to look at….nice job!

    BTW, in answer to your question….we are in London until the end of the summer.

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  2. Very nice pictures….. hopefully, I’ll get there someday…

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  3. Very cool pics! I haven’t tried the “sandwich” trick yet, but I want to…

    BTW, in reference to your post way back about music and stuff. I was wondering if your wife was familiar with Eric Whitacre and Morten Lauridsen – two wonderful choral composers…

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  4. Both cool pictures…but I think I like your sandwich best. Gives it a dream-like feeling that goes well with the enormity of the trees out there. The top one, however, just makes me wanna jump on my speder bike.

    And a do so many things in life…these shots make me think of Hyperion. The World Tree, the Templars of Muir, etc.

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  5. Places like those are sadly disappearing – thank goodness for those with enough foresight to save them; may the next generation have such individuals.

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  6. Very very nice pictures. The mere mention, though, of food and I make my apologies. Must go. Make sandwich.
    Ta ta.

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  7. Many of us who spend too much time working in our cubicles appreciate the improved perspective and spiritual renewal that we get from visiting places like Muir Woods National Monument. Its sad to hear about the tourist who would rather sit on the bus. One can only hope that he someday gains some appreciation for nature.
    Hiking Trip Inspirations at Muir Woods National Monument – BRT Insights.

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  8. BRT – Thanks for the comment. Nice post of your own, by the way. It’s a shame, for sure, but some folks just don’t get into the woods (literally or figuratively).

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