09 January 2012


Saturday I made a junket off the mountain and in to town. It was clean out the mailbox day. Where I live the Post Office fears to go so I must make a weekly pilgrimage to town to pickup the mail.

When I have to come down off the mountain I always try to work in some photo scouting. My thought was ice falls along the Koocanusa. Usually at this time of year there are some extraordinary icefalls to be found. Last year the icefalls were everywhere and some were too beautiful for words. The image below is one such Koocanusa icefall.

This year was certainly nothing like last year. I was barely able to even find any ice. And here it is the middle of January for pity sakes! I was kind of thinking about trying to get into Little Norfork Falls if all else failed.

Whilst I was creeping along I did find some ice falls right along the road that looked like they had some potential. As is always the case when I see something I would like to photograph there was no shoulder to pull over. But, the road on the west side of the Koocanusa is a forest service road and gets next to no traffic in winter. That is unless I have parked in the road and set up my tripod at the edge of the pavement. About the time I got myself setup two axe men (read logging trucks) came barreling down on me. Let me tell you those boys stop for no one and nothing. They flew by me, using the oncoming lane, like I wasn't even there. I wish I could have gotten a shot of them coming at me. It would have been impressive.

I never saw any other vehicles in the time I was there, probably three hours. I did make my way down to the Little Northfork Falls turn off but guess what? That's exactly where those logging truck were working. No way this girl is going down an icy single track road with logging trucks on it. No freaking way!

At that very spot where I saw my life pass before my eyes I was able to get one photograph I thought was nice. I was darned grateful for even the one. It's totally different from last years catch but I think beautiful in it's earthy contrast.

Weather here in Montana can change on a dime. It's still just the middle of January so maybe there will be more opportunities ahead. Will just have to wait and see what Mother Nature has to say about that.

©Kinsey Barnard

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