Whether it's kayaking, hiking, or photography, my love for the Adirondacks grows with every trip I take. I dream of one day getting paid to explore and take pictures. I feel like this journey for me is just in its infancy and cannot wait to see what the future brings.
It's 4pm. I clock out of work. The kayak is already loaded on top of my VW. I hop in and go.
Windows down, radio up, I cruise up Route 12 toward the Blue Line. I'm heading to a lake I've been to many times before. It's one of my favorites because it's off the beaten path and just close enough to drive to after work.
I cross the Black River and eventually come to a dirt road. Only 12 miles to go. Halfway down the road I lose cell phone reception. Now I am feeling good. No phone calls. No emails. No stress. Just me and the woods.
Coming up to the intersection of Reeds Pond, I stop to take a look. It's very calm with nice reflections of the surrounding landscape. I snap a couple of pictures enjoy the scenery for a minute, hop in the car and keep moving.
Soon, a large painted rock looms close on the left side of the road. I have arrived. Here I am. Mountains in the distance, still water, amazing reflections. I couldn't ask for a more beautiful day.
Today, I have a little more time than usual, so I decide to explore farther up the lake. I grab my camera and take some shots of the reflections of the islands, rocks and clouds. I keep paddling up the lake and eventually find a campsite with a lean-to. I knew it was here, but always wondered where it was located. There are two kayaks on shore – I'm not the only one who was trying to find it I guess.
It's unreal how perfectly calm and flat the water is, like a shimmering mirror. My photography has progressed drastically ever since I bought a DSLR camera, and I'm able to capture incredible details like multi-hued sunsets and star trails.
I explore various coves and small waterway that drain into the lake. Eventually, the sun begins to set, and I paddle as hard as I can for about two miles across the lake. The sky is a dazzling shade of pink and the reflection on the water is breathtaking. I snap a few more pictures, and then enjoy the rest of the sunset until I can barely see the shore, where I know my car is parked even if I can't see it. Time to pack up and head home.
The night is gorgeous and clear – and I think to myself that the conditions are perfect for taking pictures of the stars. But someone has to work in the morning, so I head home instead.
Driving back down the dirt road I see a doe and her fawn standing not far from my car, just looking at me. They're so innocent. 'Enjoy the woods' I whisper, I'll be back again soon.
It's 4pm. I clock out of work. The kayak is already loaded on top of my VW
My Passion for the Adirondacks
I grew up close to Oneida Lake, and my family had a camp right on the water, plus another on the Three Rivers in Phoenix, NY. I always loved the water and fished like crazy. In every photo of me as a child, I have a fishing pole in my hands, my latest prized catch on display.
Even though we had a couple boats over the years, I never really canoed or kayaked. In 2011, my parents brought me to the Adirondacks for my birthday where we participated in the One Square Mile of Hope, and I got to be one of the 1,902 canoes and kayaks that broke the Guinness Book of World Records for the "Largest Raft of Canoes and Kayaks."
After that, I was hooked. Now, I'm passionate about kayaking in the Adirondacks and have gone on lots of kayak trips. Slowly, I got into hiking as well. I hiked my first firetower, Mount Arab, in August of 2012, and just completed my fifth firetower hike. Eventually, I want to complete the Firetower Challenge.
Just recently I actually accomplished the single thing I've wanted to capture since getting a DSLR: I captured a photo of the Milky Way over Owls Head Mountain after a day of kayaking Lake Eaton. Does it get more perfect than that?
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