Category Archives: Photos

Loudon Heights Overlook Panorama

Loudon Heights Overlook

Loudon Heights Overlook Panorama Loudon Heights OverlookHere’s a different look at Harpers Ferry. This time round I hiked up Loudon Heights rather than Maryland Heights.

While the walk up Maryland Heights is pretty much straight up (well round and round up I suppose) Loudon Heights is a bit more spread out. First you go up, then you walk along the spine of the mountain for a way.

At the end of the trail you get this view which is definitely worthwhile.

Next time I go up there I need to try out my telephoto lens and get some closer shots of Harpers Ferry itself.

Surveying The Battlefield

Amber Waves of Grain

Surveying The Battlefield Amber Waves of GrainOkay well technically it’s just regular grass but work with me here. It’s also actually a Civil War site, but again, let’s not be picky.

This panorama is at Harper’s Ferry National Historical Park, but it’s no at the bit everyone goes to. This is the Murphy-Chambers Farm.

While not nearly as visited as the primary site, it does make an excellent walking area with 1-3 miles of mostly flat ground (there are a few ravines if you choose to take them).

Amongst other things here you can see the footprint of the John Brown Fort and a gorgeous vista of the Shenandoah River.

There are also some earthworks since this is where Confederate General A.P. Hill performed his flanking maneuver on the Union forces. 

While I like the scale of this image, I did make a basic error in composition which is that I left the horizon close to the middle of the image. I should have either shown less sky and more grass or more sky and less grass.

In my defense it is much harder to compose those elements when taking a series of portrait orientation images to stitch into a landscape panorama.

The Old Vault

The Old Vault At Mount Vernon


The Old Vault 1024x767 The Old Vault At Mount VernonAs the sign explains (though the text is probably just a little too small in this photo) this is the old Washington family vault at Mount Vernon. George and Martha Washington along with assorted other family members were interred here until the new tomb (which George Washington had instructed be built) was completed in 1831.

It’s certainly not a very imposing monument. But then I suspect Washington wasn’t really anticipating the million or so people who visit Mount Vernon each year. In the absence of any really strong feature I tried to bring out the textures in the wooden door and the brickwork.

Mount Vernon Distillery

George Washington Distillery From The Outside

Mount Vernon Distillery George Washington Distillery From The OutsideHere’s a more picturesque shot of the George Washington Distillery at Mount Vernon. The building itself is not especially distinctive but the setting is certainly very attractive. The water course adds to the composition of the picture, plus I got lucky with a nice cloudy sky.

A little bit of extra processing in Photoshop pulled out the details throughout the picture.

How Much Wood

How Much Wood Would A Wood Chuck Chuck?

How Much Wood How Much Wood Would A Wood Chuck Chuck?I went with my son on his recent school outing to Mount Vernon. An interesting place to visit certainly. As part of the trip we also stopped by the George Washington Grist Mill and Distillery.

This particular photo is in front of the Distillery portion of the site where a group of people dressed for the part are busy chopping wood. Now keep in mind it was about 90 degrees that day with humidity at 5 billion percent (definitely not a dry heat). It can’t have been fun for them.

Given the subject matter it just seemed to make sense to go black and white with this one.

Potomac Panorama

Potomac Panorama

Potomac Panorama Potomac PanoramaOn the Maryland side of the Potomac you can walk from Harpers Ferry all the way up to Shepherdstown or further courtesy of the C&O Canal. On the West Virginia side things are a little more limited. But you can walk along the river a way. Which is what I did here, walking until I reached an old rubble dam usually refered to as Dam # 3 (but originally apparently called the Armory Dam).

As you can see it makes for an impressive panoramic view of the river.