February 23, 2018

Man Working

When I was at Shenandoah River State Park yesterday, almost nobody was there. I did see a few people working though, clearing away an area for something.

February 22, 2018

Fish Trap River Access, Shenandoah River

Shenandoah River State Park

This morning I had an appointment in Front Royal, and afterward I bought a salad at Martins and took it to the state park for a quiet lunch. Almost no one was there, as it was a chilly and cloudy day. I ate in the car and then walked through a picnic area down to the river.

I found steps leading to the river at the "Fish Trap River Access." I've read about the fish traps in a guide for boaters on the Shenandoah. These traps are rock dams utilized by Native Americans who built fish weirs of rocks and branches, which slowed the movement of fish so that they could be easily speared, or even scooped up into a basket.

Archaeological evidence has shown that Paleo-Indians excavated jasper and crafted arrowheads in this area over 10,000 years ago! They probably returned to the river every spring to fish.

Most fish traps were partially removed to facilitate commerce back when the Shenandoah was used as a highway for moving goods, which was seasonal because often the river is too low for even a flat boat.

Shenandoah River State Park is open year-round, even when Skyline Drive in the mountains above it is closed. There is a small entrance fee, worth paying even if all you do is look at the view from Cullers Overlook. But come down to the river too!

February 21, 2018

Backyard Birds, Warren County, VA

We are in the midst of an unseasonably warm spell. If it doesn't cool down soon, I need to consider whether to keep feeding the birds. The seed and suet can attract bears, and they will destroy the feeders and perhaps tear into the trash.

For now I am still seeing plenty of birds, especially around the feeders. Here we see some sparrows, a gold finch, a red-bellied woodpecker, a male cardinal, and Canada geese. The geese would be around even if I don't feed them because people do so on the other side of the lake.

Sharing with Not So Wordless and Wild Bird Wednesday,

February 20, 2018

Historic Winchester and Starry Flash.


The Good: There's a monument to Major General Daniel Morgan in Winchester, VA. Morgan settled near Winchester in 1753 and went on to become a hero in the American Revolution.

There are several plaques at the base of the statue, which is at the corner of Piccadilly Street and East Lane.

Sharing with Tuesday Treasures and Our World Tuesday
The Epitaph on Daniel Morgan's original grave marker at this site:
 Major General Daniel Morgan
On July 6th, 1802 in the 67th year of his age. Patriotism and valor were the prominent features of his character and the honorable services he rendered to his country during the Revolutionary War crowned him with glory and will remain in the hearts of his countrymen a perpetual monument to his memory.
Congressional Gold Medal awarded to Brigadier General Daniel Morgan March 9, 1781 for his victory at the battle of Cowpens, South Carolina January 17, 1781.

You can read more on HMDB (Historical Marker Database).  

The Random: Across the street from the Daniel Morgan Monument is a tabletop-style sign entitled "Jacob Baker Lot And Virginia City Addition." It tells how a booming textile industry provided housing for workers over a century ago. "The Jacob Baker and Virginia City tracts are a time capsule of early twentieth-century housing styles, including late Folk Victorian homes along National Avenue, boxy American Foursquares on East Piccadilly Street, and modest Colonial Revival single family and townhouses in Virginia City."

Again, you can read more on the Historical Marker Database.

The Fun: It is National Love Your Pet Day! I tried to dress Flash up just a little for the occasion but he did not think it was a hot idea, so I dressed up his picture using a starry effect. 

It's now been a full year since Flash was diagnosed with congestive heart failure. He's been on medication and is doing pretty well, although there are times when he spits out his pills and I have to re-hide them in tasty treats, sometimes over and over. About 10 days ago we had to increase the Lasix to help his breathing, but it has worked well and now he has more pep.

February 19, 2018

The View from Tannery Road.

Luray, Virginia.

These pictures have been languishing in my files for a year. I am bringing them out in order to participate in Monday Murals, now hosted by Sami. This long mural is on the side of a steel building that's part of an auto body shop. Let's move in a little closer. 

The building is near an old factory that was converted to an antiques store. From that side of the complex there's a lane that passes a pretty farm and old manor house.

Sharing with Mosaic Monday and the Barn Collective.

February 18, 2018

First Baptist Church in Front Royal.

The First Baptist Church was constructed in 1913 and 1914. It's at 32 North Royal Avenue.

Reflected in the larger window is the Weaver Building, built around the same time. It is currently home to a law office.

February 17, 2018

Birds and Animals, Mid-February

Birds in trees are normal, but getting pictures of them there can be tricky. When I get one without a branch covering his face, I feel pleased. I'm glad this blue jay posed for a few seconds.

The mockingbird was perched on a neighbor's mailbox. I took his picture from the car.

The next picture tells a little story. A woman is picking up trash at the school bus stop. Who knocked over that trash can? Oh, there he is, peeking out from behind her car!

She called animal control. An officer showed up promptly and located the dog's owner at a nearby farm. This is not the first time his dogs have caused problems.

Once in a while his other animals wander into our neighborhood. Here are a couple of sheep I saw a few days ago. The farmer really needs to fix his fences!

Did you know sheep and deer belong to the same family, Artiodactyla? That means even-toed ungulates. (I didn't know that word; I just looked it up.)

I saw this herd of deer on Dickey Ridge in Shenandoah National Park. They blend in well, don't they? You can drive right past them without seeing them.

This afternoon we had a little snow. The grey geese don't seem to mind.

February 16, 2018

Mid-February Views

Willy Nilly Friday

Posting five random things gives me a chance to catch up on items I wanted to share and at the same time, join a few linkups. 

1. Yesterday afternoon temperatures were warm so I walked out to the lake. This is a zoomed-in picture of ripples on the water. 
Black and White Weekend.
2. This view is from a house on Nature's Way near Strasburg that's for sale. They have a nice view of Massanutten Mountain.

Weekend Greens
3. A 15-acre solar field has been completed in Front Royal. American Municipal Power (AMP) constructed the facility on former farmland. On a sunny day it can power over 300 homes. In this picture, the solar collectors are barely visible beyond the tree line, but they are quietly working away, collecting energy.

4. We live between Dulles Airport and the mountains that all the west-bound flights pass over. Under certain conditions, the jets leave vapor trails in their wake. These reminded me of tic-tac-toe, but 15 minutes later they were gone.
Skywatch Friday
5. I added a watercolor filter to this flower picture.
Sharing with Floral Friday and Orange You Glad It's Friday? 
Have a good weekend!

February 15, 2018

Post and Rail Fences

And ponies!

This one has a dog.

Sharing with Fences Around the World.

February 14, 2018

Rose Imperfect

When I took pictures this morning of my flowers, I intended to wish everyone a Happy Valentine's Day. But it rings hollow now. Another school shooting ... so much tragedy. So sad and so senseless.

Once upon a time I believed we were on an upward path, becoming a little more civilized as years went by. But I am disillusioned. The veneer of civilization is not only thin; it is cracked and dented and falling off in big chunks. God help us.