Photographs Along the Way

October 10, 2021  •  Leave a Comment

When I am not traveling, I typically have a plan before I leave the house with my camera. I know ahead of time where I plan to go and the route that I will take. Since so many areas around me are not familiar to me (I am a Midwestern gal), I almost always have to rely on the GPS to get me there.

Sometimes, the GPS steers me wrong and I end up in unfamiliar territory and never find what I was originally looking for. That is what happened last weekend when I was trying to find a small park in the Smith Mountain Lake area of Virginia. When I cannot find what I originally came for, I take advantage of the situation and make it into an adventure. And, oh my, the things that I see when I am not actually looking for them!

I’d never really spent a lot of time in the Smith Mountain Lake area of Virginia, so I headed out there before sunrise to see if I could find some pretty places to shoot the rising sun. I entered a destination into the GPS and made my way there, but it was closed to the public as it was the off-season (early October). I got back into the car and started driving and I caught a glimpse of this scene as I rounded a corner in Smith Mountain Lake. Dock FogDock FogThirty minutes after sunrise on Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia in October. Even better, a fisherman was just coming back in towards the shore, about 30 minutes after sunrise.
Sunrise FishermanSunrise FishermanA fisherman was headed back in to shore shortly after sunrise on Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia. From there, I went off in search of a couple public parks in Moneta, Virginia, which is a short distance away from Smith Mountain Lake. The GPS could not locate one of the parks that I was looking for, but while driving around with my eyes peeled, I wound up at the end of a dead end street. Actually, the sign at the end of the street said “road closed”, as if they were doing construction. No signs of construction, but there were two very old abandoned buildings. This was the major photographic find of the day for me!
WindowsWindowsAbandoned building windows.

Moneta Produce Building - black and whiteMoneta Produce Building - black and whiteMoneta Produce building in Moneta, Virginia

Abandoned Building - black & whiteAbandoned Building - black & whiteAn old abandoned building in Moneta, Virginia.

This last photograph made me think of the Hitchcock movie "Psycho" and how the main house at the Bates Motel might have looked a few years after the last scene of the movie took place. Someone that I know commented that it felt like Tennessee Williams territory and "A Streetcar Named Desire". Absolutely!

If I hadn't have been looking for something else and just happened to wander into this neighborhood, look at what I would have missed!

This past weekend, I got up very early and made the drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway to Mabry Mill. Rain and thunderstorms were in the forecast for the entire area, but in looking at the hourly forecast near the mill, I thought I might luck out and be able to get some shots in between rain showers. The entire time I was there, the rainfall was no more than a mist.

Mabry Mill in OctoberMabry Mill in OctoberThe colors on the Blue Ridge Parkway were not all at peak on October 9, 2021. The colors of the trees closest to Mabry Mill were. It was 60 degrees Fahrenheit and slightly misty on this day. On the way to Mabry Mill, I passed the Rock Castle Gorge Overlook, and the valley was cloaked in a heavy fog. But on the way past about 1-1/2 hours later, I glanced off to the side and saw wisps of clouds in the valley! I found a safe place to turn around on the Parkway and went back for a closer look. The clouds were still very threatening overhead, but the valley was visible below. What a breathtaking view! Rock Castle GorgeRock Castle GorgeThe Rock Castle Gorge Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway is at an elevation of 3,195 feet. Sometimes we get so busy in life that we don’t always take time to enjoy the ride. We might be on our way to an adventure, but sometimes, the best things might be missed if we don’t take the time to glance out the side window on the way to our destination.


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All photographs on the Deb Beausoleil Photography website are the exclusive property of Deb Beausoleil.  The images may not be copied, reproduced, transmitted or altered without the written consent of Deb Beausoleil. 

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