#149 Returning From ShoreSearch Maritimes ’15
It seems a long time since I’ve posted here. Well, that’s because it is…I’ve been focused for a very long time on preparing and doing a photosafari called ShoreSearch Maritimes. It’s a new sibling to previous expeditions to the north and south in previous years. It’s time to report in. First with just a few pictures of geography that makes my spirit feel at home.
This first update is a selection from B&W film scans. Why do I honor the B&W with primacy ? Well…it’s a long story.
The short version is that of four cameras I used on this two week 2600 mile trip, my 35 year old, $180 Nikkormat EL film camera performed the best. $1400 dollars worth of of “prosumer” Nikon D-80 digital body and lenses were a major pain in the butt. My second string backup digital camera, a $500 Canon G-12, barfed and may be a total write off. $360 repair bills. My Ukrainian Kiev, imitation Hasselbladski, should have died at Chernobyl.
While trail biking in this terrain, before and after the brand new boardwalk, a branch snagged on the exposure meter coupling of the Nikkormat ripping it completely off the camera and disabling all exposure measurement. I was able to keep shooting by making educated guesses, based on 35 years that this camera has been my favorite, my personal sidearm, about the light and settings. I wasn’t always dead on, but 86 frames made the “keepers” file.
These frames come from New River Beach provincial park in New Brunswick, on the trail to Barneby Head where, when the air is clear, you can make out the Annapolis Valley shore of Nova Scotia on the other side of Fundy Bay. The crevasse, frame left was just outboard of an historical settlers homestead, the Chittick farm, remembered today for the hardships the family endured through winters before they abandoned the site. The trip to Barneby Head appeared on the map to be an easy two kilometer afternoon, but I returned after dark, with body, bike and cameras traumatized by ten clicks of reality. None of us are getting younger.
I found much softer accommodations in and around Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, the town on other side of Halifax Harbor. I particularly enjoyed an eastern Dartmouth suburb call Eastern Passage…50% working harbor, 35% bedroom community and 15% tourist attraction. The town park left some lovely points of access to the natural beauty of the place. Even though the town is all around you can still feel what it was like before.
The town of Lunenburg is one of those places that reminds me always that tourist towns tend to grow up where it’s already beautiful. It’s possible, just possible, not to wreck the beauty in the process of exploiting the re$ource. Lunenburg compares with Woods Hole or Camden ME and emerges as queen.
I fell in love. This is Maud R.M. a 24 foot ( lol ) replica inshore fishing vessel with among the loveliest lines I’ve ever seen. She fed her family right well in the bygone years when economic fish stocks where close to home.
This last picture is a nearly pure fiction. Tourist signs in Lunenburg direct the motorist to a place called Blue Rocks. At first you think you’re there when you pass a venerable cemetery… are those headstones blue? About 5 klix further is a little harbor at Blue Rocks Island…a subject in itself…but just you go two more klix past where the tourists usually stop and you arrive at a village called…I kid you not...Pleasant Paddling. It might look like this for a few hours each August…to those who have never heard of Nova Scotia’s “August Breeze” of 1927 when, without warning, a cat 3 hurricane destroyed seven Nova Scotia vessels and near 50 of their crews. Imagine this place in a February gale out of the sou’east with the rollers breaking as high as the schooners main gaff. Imagine your dory three cable length downwind and ice growing on your oars.
Nuff for now: I’ve barely scratched the surface. Next Post: I’ll try to get to some of the color.