The Cog

Recently I had the opportunity to visit the other upper corner of the US.  See, I spend a lot of time in the Pacific NW, and I’ve been to precious few Eastern states.  This year, however, I got to see the Fall Foliage in New England first-hand.

The image above is The Cog Railway.  It chugs up Mt. Washington in New Hampshire at a grade of between 25% and 37%. That’s pretty steep.  We were in this part of New Hampshire, at the beginning of October 2014, specifically because the foliage was supposed to be near peak levels.  I didn’t know, before this trip, that the window of opportunity for peak foliage was so slim.  I didn’t know that it moved throughout New England with nary a regard for visitors (Leaf Peepers, we’re called) who have to fly across the country to see it.  Apparently we missed the absolute peak (in this exact spot) by a couple of days.  Over Dunkin’ Donuts coffee (Starbucks anyone?  Huh?), I would say something like, “Wow, that tree is really red.”  And our guide would respond with something like, “Yeah, but it was redder last week.”  And I would go, “Oh.”

Oh, well.  Here’s what The Cog train looks like when it’s parked at the top.

Here’s what you don’t see in the picture above:  People.  There were people all around, milling about, standing between me and scenic views for no reason, taking pictures with telephones and flashes.  Although I do like this image, I’m most proud of how long I was willing to squat in an about-to-take-a-picture stance while waiting (hoping) for all the other tourists to get the heck out of the frame.  I’m sure I looked super cool.

That’s a shot taken while we were ascending the mountain.  I had a few thousand dollars worth of camera gear stuck out the window, at arm’s length, while moving.  I had no idea what the auto-focus would grab on to; I was just hoping I didn’t drop anything.  The picture turned out pretty good, I think.  And look – foliage.

Here’s the view from the top – 6,289 feet.  That’s, like, a bunch of meters.  Most of the peaks are named after other US presidents, but I’m not sure if we’re seeing any of them in this image.  I’d love to tell you that you can see into another state (which you can), but I have no idea which direction we’re facing here.  Perhaps the geographically geeky among you would look at the shadows, understand that this was at 10:00 AM and say, “Dude, I totally recognize Maine out there.”  Maybe.

At this point I want to give one more picture from my excellent trip to the top of Mt. Washington.  I struggled with my choice, so I sincerely hope you visit the New Hampshire gallery on my SmugMug site.  After some deliberation, I’ve decide to go with the image that has a person in it.  Does that make it stronger for you?  I realize the overall image looks a lot like the previous one, but this one has a guy in it. What’s he thinking?  Why is he there?  Is he there with anyone else?

Am I looking into a different state when I look at this picture?

Hint:  Look at the shadows (the shadows know).

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One Response to The Cog

  1. Pingback: New Hampshire In Fall - Sumptuous Art

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