Tag Archives: September

Roadside Finds: What The Heck?

Abandoned storefronts along US-20 near Foster, Oregon

Shortly after we stopped to take the photo of the sailboat in the previous post, we stopped at a roadside park to take a photo of a covered bridge.  The covered bridge paled in comparison to what was across the road!

Abandoned storefronts along US-20 near Foster, Oregon

I don’t even know what to call this.  It was definitely a facade of some kind, but I’m not sure what it was hiding – the Google satellite view is inconclusive, and we didn’t cross the road to investigate.  It was a little creepy, actually.  But made for some interesting photographs! 😉

Abandoned storefronts along US-20 near Foster, Oregon

Someone appears to have a lot of time on their hands and a very active imagination!

Abandoned storefronts along US-20 near Foster, Oregon
Abandoned storefronts along US-20 near Foster, Oregon
Abandoned storefronts along US-20 near Foster, Oregon

Footloose In The Palouse

Rural scenery in The Palouse area of eastern Washington north of Pullman

There are some places you can go where the secret to making decent photographs is simply being willing to stop the car.  The Palouse region of eastern Washington state was such a place for me.

I tend to steer clear of photographic icons for the simple reason that it is hard to do anything original there.  That plus the fact that standing at an overlook with a bunch of other photographers isn’t my idea of a good time.  But on this road trip we are concentrating on doing our own thing.

Rural scenery in The Palouse area of eastern Washington north of Pullman

We only had two nights devoted to the Palouse, staying in the town of Pullman, WA.  When we arrived at our hotel we were informed that a group of National Guard personnel were due to arrive the following day to assist with testing of University of Washington students because the campus – surprise, surprise – had become a hotbed of Covid cases.  Swell – so much for distancing.

Rural countryside along SR 26 in southeastern Washington

We limited our public stops in Pullman to two mostly empty restaurants and a grocery store.  We drove the first evening on mostly deserted back roads, got the car filthy dirty but saw some nice scenery.  The second day we awoke to the forecasted high winds and dust storms, so that limited our activities that day.  But in 200+ miles of driving around the area we went from places we weren’t willing to get out of the car to places that were clear as a bell, just windy as heck.

“Wheel Fence” at the Dahmen Barn along US-195 in Uniontown, Washington
“Wheel Fence” at the Dahmen Barn along US-195 in Uniontown, Washington

One of the meccas for photographers is Steptoe Butte, a high spot overlooking the undulating valleys.  We had planned to go there but nixed the idea due to the high winds and dust.  So instead we did the sensible thing and sought out a small local restaurant with excellent food and wine.  The photos can wait for a return visit!

Rural scenery along US-195 near Uniontown, Washington
Rural scenery along US-195 near Uniontown, Washington

I think I did a pretty decent job of finding “my own” version of the Palouse region.  I have hundreds more shots but this is a sample of my initial favorites.

Rural scenery along US-195 near Uniontown, Washington

Umbrellas

Old Town, Fort Collins, Colorado. The black stones are part of a public art installation titled “Confluence” by Lawrence Argent

One day when passing through the Oak Street Plaza Park in Fort Collins, I spotted the reflections that these umbrellas were making in the black stone and stopped to take a few photos.  I didn’t spend enough time on this idea, but otherwise think I captured what I saw.

The black stones are part of a public art installation titled “Confluence” by Lawrence Argent.  More public art!

Old Town, Fort Collins, Colorado. The black stones are part of a public art installation titled “Confluence” by Lawrence Argent

Art On The Line

Old Town, Fort Collins, Colorado

One of the things that has impressed me about Fort Collins, CO is the amount of public art, especially in Old Town.  They even publish maps and have a walking tour telling people where to find it.  Sometimes the art is sculpture, pavers on the sidewalk, plaques or other displays.  Two of the most prevalent forms seem to be painted pianos placed around town that anyone can play, and painted utility box covers.  A very clever way to disguise what is usually seen as big, green, ugly boxes.

Old Town, Fort Collins, Colorado

It’s evidently brand new, as it isn’t shown in Google Street View and I couldn’t find out anything about it in the published information.  But this structure is almost certainly art.  If not, I have no idea what its purpose would be!  I had a little fun with it while walking around on a beautiful, sunshiny day!

Old Town, Fort Collins, Colorado

If anyone wants to check it out, it is located in an alleyway in an area bordered by Oak Street, Mason Street, Mountain Ave. and College Ave.  Right behind Walrus Ice Cream! 🙂