Thursday, July 11, 2019

June 2019

Dames rocket delight
Another June has come and gone. It is easy to fall in love with June and I will miss her. Long days, new life, sunshine, thunderstorms, rainbows and road trips. This June was a little different than others with more rain than most liked or needed and a little cooler weather overall. Even so, June is June and I find it hard be angry with her.  Here are 12 photos from the month to express my affection. From wildflowers to fawns, storm clouds to snapper turtles, what more could you want in a month?  Click on an image for a larger file to view and thanks for checking in!

Prairiesmoke wildflower

American Avocet

White-tail fawn

Rain chasing the tractor

Memories of the past

8 miles of road

Sterling Methodist under a building storm

Codington county rainbow

A snapper's smile

Meadowhawk at rest

Country road double rainbow

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

May 2019

Great Horned Owl just after dinner time in rural Perkins County, SD
 May was here and gone in a seeming wink of the eye. Spring came late to the upper great plains, but it did and so did a variety of photo opportunities.  From southeastern South Dakota to the Badlands and Black Hills, I did take some time out of a busy month to stop and take some flower photos (as well as a few other things along the way).  Here are 12 of my favorite finds from the month. Click on an image for a larger file to view and thanks for stopping by!

Red Admiral Butterly in a blooming plum thicket at Union Grove State Park

Momma raccoon in Palisades State Park

Baby raccoon at Palisades State Park

Hummingbird on Missouri Gooseberry blossoms at Palisades State Park

A Mallard family out for a swim at Covell Lake in Sioux Falls

Western Wallflower just beginning to bloom in Badlands National Park

Yellow Warbler in sunshine at Custer State Park

Rainbow over Wind Cave National Park

Misty morning at the Slim Buttes in Harding County, SD

Rain/mist droplets on a Prairie Smoke Wildflower in the Slim Buttes

Juvenile Great Horned Owl showing his nictitatingmembranes (second eyelids)

Thursday, May 9, 2019

April 2019

Eastern Bluebird
I started April in the midst of a beach vacation in the Gulf Shores area of southern Alabama. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the area is a great place for early spring birding. Because of this, you may see more bird photos than normal in this month's "best 12."  Seems like every spring, I am finding it harder to resist the challenge to find and shoot portraits of as many colorful and interesting birds that I can spot. Spring is a great time to go out into nature for a walk. Finding, identifying and photographing the spring migration is a great way to get motivated to get off the couch and outside.  Even though this April was more cold, wet and snowy that we'd like here in South Dakota, it still provided great photo ops for early spring wildflowers, including our state flower, the pasqueflower.  You'll see a few portraits of this little beauty in this month's collection as well.  Click on an image for a larger file to view and thanks for checking in!
The Gulf of Mexico as seen from Alabama's Gulf Shores area

Supper time for a great blue heron

First pasqueflower of the year with a bee 

House finch showing off his colors

Pasqueflower in the evening light

Snow trillium living up to its name

Pasqueflower defying a spring blizzard

Golden-crowned kinglet

Ruby-crowned kinglet

Pasqueflower patch in rural McPherson County taken on Easter Sunday

Wild white trout lily found in Union Grove State Park, SD

Thursday, April 4, 2019

March 2019

A late March sunset reflecting gold on meltwater
March had me indoors for the majority of the month capturing basketball action in Sioux Falls. Which was probably OK as the weather outside was chaotic at best.  The last thrashes of winter which arrived with rain, wet snow, ice dams and floodwaters as well as something called a bomb cyclone all affected the area throughout the month. Finding eye pleasing nature scenes to photograph therefore became a bit difficult.  So, there is a handful of my favorite sports photos from the month mixed in the 12 this time around.  Hope you don't mind.  There is a reason they call it March Madness (and CBS copyrighted the term).  As always, click on an image for a larger file to view and thanks for checking in! 

A multi-image panoramic of the Sanford Pentagon during the men's NSIC championship game

A genuine buzzer beater in the semi-finals as the tourney MVP,  passes the ball to a freshman off the Northern State University bench who then proceeds to put a floater up in the lane for the win... and the NSU heavy crowd went nuts.

South Dakota State University's women's basketball team won the Summit League Tournament and here is a reflection looking into the trophy as it was handed over to the team to be hoisted in victory.

This photo is memorable as it captures the moment of celebration immediately after Macy Miller surpassed the all-time Summit League scoring mark... And it happened during a huge run that brought the Jacks from 10 down to up 10.  The Premiere Center crowd made of mostly SDSU fans was deafening. Hairs stood up on the back of my neck.

An early spring robin at Newton Hills State Park

Eastern Bluebird at Newton Hills State Park

Meltwater on top of Lake Vermillion catching the gold of the late winter sunset.

American Tree Sparrow in the evening light at Palisades State Park

A squirrel's front door at Palisades State Park

A sunset view from the hotel room deck where I stayed for the last few days of March and the first few days of April in Orange Beach, Alabama.  It was a much needed vacation.

While in Alabama, I saw three "new to me" warblers including this Pine Warbler at Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

February 2019

Sun dogs with drifting snow west of Hartford, SD
February of 2019 was cold, colder and then bitter cold more than a couple of times. Add a lot of fresh snow plus wind and it all equals a pretty rough month in terms of weather and getting around.  A couple things that the frigid weather conditions did bring was an abundance of sun dogs in the sky as well as light pillars above city lights at night. Here are my 12 best of the month for you. Click on an image for a larger file to view and thanks for checking in!

Prairie windmill with a sun dog sunset

Light pillars above Dell Rapids, SD

A cold day at the Sioux Falls Outdoor Campus

Winter sunset near Ellis, SD

Sunset reflected off of thousands of fresh snowflakes

Sun dog with West Nidaros Lutheran near Crooks, SD

Sun dogs with an icicle and the steeple of Old Nidaros Replica

Sun Dog sunset at Eminja Burial Mounds near Brandon, SD

Light pillars over Sioux Falls

Light pillars over Sioux Falls

Light pillars over Sioux Falls