The road into the northern tip of Shenandoah National Park was closed today because of yesterday’s storm, which glistened the upper elevations with ice and sleet. It made for a rare occasion of walking along Skyline Drive with no cars. The normally busy road and popular trails probably enjoyed their rest as the melting ice showered the park in slush, puddles and drips. Paired with the blue sky and cool temperatures, it was a spectacular combination. After walking south for a few miles and then returning to the car, the day got even better with a trip to Front Royal’s Apple House, and their magical apple butter and cinnamon-dusted doughnuts. All in all, an excellent escape from urban life.
I haven’t wanted to take photos of anything lately besides the dogs. But as I was walking Bonnie after work the other day I couldn’t help but notice the really loud birds and beautiful sunset. There seems to be a point of day around dusk when birds are overcome with energy and sound and flight. Flocks of birds were flying west towards a stand of trees across the street, where they took up residence on new branches. I love how they maximize the few minutes left before darkness settles. I guess I feel like that, too – especially when I’ve been inside all day long on an already short winter day and I know I only have 20 minutes left of natural light. So it’s a good thing that those last 20 minutes tend to be really beautiful and calming.