South Mountain Reservation

South Mountain Reservation is a large area of preserved land, one small area of it is home to a sculpture garden, dog park, and a wildflower garden. The Wildflower area is a fenced in section of the preserve that is taken care of by volunteers.  One side of it was quite overgrown so I tried the other entrance which brought me directly to the wildflowers, they weren’t fully in bloom yet which just means I will have to go back. As I ventured deeper back I encountered a more swamp-like area with more sculptures aside from the ones at the front gate.  The area was rich with Multiflora Roses, Ferns, and Skunk Cabbage. I had to look up the Eastern Columbine and the purple flower I still am unsure of it looks to me to be in the rose family?

You can see more of my work on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter

Lenape Park

Lenape Park is a small stretch of a paved pathway in the middle of a swamp or marsh area. It follows along the Rahway River and it actually is in the middle of a path that connects four parks total. Black Brook Park, Nomahegan Park, and Echo Lake Park are the other three that you can access from it. Lenape Park had a lot of activity from pedestrians. In fact, the other parks do as well. This was somewhat disappointing for me because it made it difficult for me to try to stop to look and watch for wildlife.  At one point I spotted a cottontail rabbit, I stopped to try and take some photos but if I stopped dead I would be a hazard to the cyclists whizzing past or the power walkers. Before I could even get my camera up to snap away someone on a very noisy bike scared it off. They do have protected area for migrating birds so next time I go I will try and get there early enough to do some bird watching.  The Stretch of the park that I did walk was utterly taken over by the multi-floral rose which is an invasive species.

Muttontown Preserve

Muttontown Preserve is a combination of three land plots in Muttontown, N.Y. The land itself is the combination of the former estates and farmland.  Some of the images are of all that is left of King Zog the last monarch of Alabania. The other images are from what was left of the Duryea Farm as well as outer buildings and playhouses in the wooded areas close to the Chelsea Mansion. I grew up near this part of Long Island and there is so much history in your backyard that is taken for granted. I do miss hiking the forgotten about wonders of the past.

Great Swamp

This image is from my 2nd and most recent trip to Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge is in Morris County. This refuse has a lot to offer on its 7800 acres. The Friends of Great Swamp NWR has an amazing visitors center as well as easy access trails. This particular spot was from the overlook parking lot half way between the nature center and the bluebird field. We started our hike at the wildlife observation center parking area which has a boardwalk guiding you though the wooded part of the swamps to blinds overlooking an open field.  On the particular morning we ventured out there were a few reported sightings of Bald Eagles. Maybe we will get to see some next time when we hike a different trail.

 

Untitled_Panorama1.jpg

Rockefeller State Park

On Halloween we took an adventure to New York we started in Pleasantville making our way though Sleepy Hollow, Tarrytown, and Croton on the Hudson. In Pleasantville we started out with a lovely hike at the Rockefeller State Park Preserve, where you hike on the  carriage roads that John D. Rockefeller Jr. created for friends and family to enjoy the natural beauty of the land his family owned. On the hike we passed through Stone Barns Center for food and agriculture’s pastures where we were able to see cattle relaxing, sheep going for a walk and not to mention beautiful sights of Bluebirds. Be sure to check back for the Halloween fun we had in the most historic place to celebrate the holiday…..Sleepy Hollow!

Covered Bridges of Bucks County

Here are some of the images from my adventure through Bucks County. It was a fun trip but a lot of driving! Only factor that was disappointing was no fall foliage, if only we went a week or two later the colors would have been peaked. Now we know for when decide on our next fall adventure.

Willowwood

I recently have been investigating more of the Arboretums, Estates, and state parks in my area. This is Willowwwod Arboretum in Far Hills, NJ. Some of the images I used my wonderful Lensbaby for a beautiful creative effect !

 

Watchung Reservation

Watchung Reservation is a huge park that borders five towns in New Jersey. I am slowly working on hiking through it , it might take me awhile!  Spring was not quite in full bloom when I went but I was able to find some fiddle heads and cherry blossoms. In one section they have an “abandoned village”  of course I was disappointed to see that the houses were boarded up but the wood was is in very unsafe conditions, if parts of the floors were there at all. I was also surprised to see that out of the ten or eleven building left four are still lived in, kind of spooky! I hope to get back now that things are blooming!!

You can always see more on my Insatgram & Twitter @caraloio

Long Island Oceans

Long Island has a reputation for a lot of things, one of which is its amazing Beaches. Waterfront properties are one of the causes for the ridiculous housing price tags on the Island, its kind of gross. On the other hand just look at them for the most part they are beautiful to visit no matter what the season. These images are from late summer / Fall out east in the Hamptons. I had some major fun with my Lensbaby and with editing. I didn’t do anything major but I like the contrast of colors along with some of the whites being blown out. I need to get back the beach soon for a shoot I do love a salty sandy filled wander, Enjoy!

Prescribed Burn

On a recent hike at Oxbow Nature Preserve in Port St. Lucie my fiancé and I came across a section of the trail that recently was prescribed a burn.  You could still smell  the slightly sweet scent of burning wood but I loved the look of the ashes still in the formation of palm fronds were strewn about as if they were confetti.

Follow me on Instagram or Twitter @caraloio