December 7, 2015

Chasing Rainbows

Filed under: beach,Outer Banks,Weather — j0jgvm89bj @ 5:30 pm

Chasing a rainbow implies unattainable or delusional objectives. When you see a rainbow, you can’t walk up to it and touch it. Physically it’s always out of reach. They’re elusive. Yet they’re one of the most beautiful natural phenomenon on earth.

They can reveal themselves unexpectedly and last only moments. I’ve tried shooting them countless times. By the time I see them and react, they’ve peaked, and faded away.

This past Thanksgiving Day was an exception. My 92 year old mother was in town with two of my sisters and other family members. To be with them was a special gift. As Denise and I were driving to Avon to join them for dinner, we noticed some faint colors  beginning to appear to the east along the beach.


Ramp 25 was the nearest beach access and I walked over to start shooting different vantage points. It just kept filling in, getting deeper and deeper.


Through the viewfinder, I saw too much to take in at once.


By the time I worked my way down to the surf, the sun was getting lower with colors peaking.

Unexpected, it was truly a gift!

February 27, 2015

Winters Too

Filed under: Outer Banks,Weather — j0jgvm89bj @ 6:33 pm

The cold weather has been particularly persistent this winter. Even the water temperature around us has dropped more than normal. Behind my house the icy sound was below 32° at times. Three days ago, we had our first snowfall. It lasted a good part of the day and was of a wet variety. It accumulated a couple inches and was pretty. It stuck to the trees in my yard, and I reflected how nice the live oak looked that I transplanted years ago from the old Coast Guard station at Chicamacomico.

live oak

February 18, 2015


Filed under: Birds,Outer Banks,Pamlico Sound,Piers,Weather — j0jgvm89bj @ 1:59 pm

Years ago, the thing that impressed me about Hatteras Island was how temperate the winters could be. The first few years after I moved here, I don’t think it ever went below freezing. I learned that the water surrounding the island acts as a heat sink and tends to keep temperatures more moderate, compared to those to the north and inland.

This year has not been one of those winters. The cold fronts have been colder, stormier and more frequent.

north pierA series of storms took its toll on the Rodanthe Pier. Last week I could see that the end of the pier would soon collapse into the sea.

viewersAn hour after I made this shot, the pier became 75 feet shorter. The next day, the owners retrieved some of the timbers washed in on the beach and are resolved to rebuild it.

marshIn the meantime, temperatures have plummeted and the Pamlico Sound froze overnight. The ice sculpted on the shoreline was a sight to behold. There were icicles on the marsh of all different shapes and sizes.

ice flowsThe sound was solid ice for hundreds of yards off shore.

ringneckWhen the waters freeze, the ducks come in wherever they can find open water. At a pond near my house, I found a variety including this Ring-Necked Duck.

grebeA Pie-Billed Grebe was among the group.

ruddyThere were about 50 Ruddy Ducks.

canvasbackI was excited to see this Canvasback. It’s a sure sign that winter is far from over, and that it’ll only get colder.


July 15, 2014

Hurricane Hangover

Filed under: Outer Banks,Pamlico Sound,storms,Weather — j0jgvm89bj @ 11:16 am

screen shot

The radar image taken at 11:15 shows the eye of Arthur directly on Cape Lookout, zeroing in toward Pamlico Sound. By 2AM we began to feel the increasing power of the storm. By 4 AM, we were in a full blown hurricane.

The morning after Arthur came through, I went outside and felt as if I had been spun around and around. There was an air of confusion and destruction. The conditions were not quite on par with Hurricane Irene in 2011, but there was more wind damage this time.

I video surveyed my property briefly, then got out to venture about town.

2014-07-04 07_28_48 – Medium

2014-07-04 07_34_12 – Medium

They were telling us this was going to be a slow hurricane season, and that’s a little hard to take right now. So far we’re one for one and counting. Tropical systems usually don’t affect us this time of year, but cleaning up after a flood isn’t good anytime.

My place had fairly little damage considering the event. Like many other residents, I do need to make some minor roof repairs. During the height of the storm, the house was getting pelted by branches and pine cones. There was little rainfall, and it was a good thing it moved in and out quickly.

Several weeks ago a couple of young feral kittens began hanging around. On June 24th we caught them and took them to a TNR clinic sponsored by Friends of Felines. They were fixed, got shots, microchipped and left ear clipped. The release part didn’t quite work out, as they got comfortable here. With the hurricane heading right at us, I put them in an enclosure under the house.

creamcicle little one

At 4 in the morning, the water poured in and they had the sense to climb through an opening to another room where they remained high and dry for the duration. There they stayed all through the following day, and were clearly traumatized but okay.


With the salt water intrusion, my petunias didn’t fare so well.

Rt 12

Waterfront property for sale. Sorry, Spinnaker Realty. No buyers  today.


A runaway dumpster blocked Sea Vista Drive.


Parking on high ground was at a premium. These vehicles survived.

parking not

These vehicles at the post office did not… that WAS a nice Mustang.


Highway 12 Waterway.


Kayak ecotours took on a new meaning.


My friend Tom gave me a lift to see other parts of town.

hatteras estates

Roof damage was common.



Trees were downed at Mac’s garage.


kitty hawk kites

A rack line got caught up in a chain link fence near Kitty Hawk Kites.

wavy tv

Andy Fox from WAVY News was on the scene making interviews.


As the daunting clean up began, Scott Caldwell squeegeed the parking lot at Island Convenience.

Myra                             Scott’s daughter Myra, also had a big job and tried to make the most of it.


Thousands of fish were washed in with the storm surge, and left stranded.

dried out

Meanwhile the clean up at home continues to progress.


Meet Hurricane Barbie, a new concept doll.


Leaving no stone unturned, Arthur toppled the headstones at the Midgett Cemetery in Rodanthe.


Flowers from the graves are still strewn across the landscape.

Just like Hurricane Irene, it’ll take a while to regain some sense of normalcy.









July 8, 2014

Arthur’s Passing, the Video

Filed under: Outer Banks,Pamlico Sound,storms,Weather — j0jgvm89bj @ 10:51 pm

Time looses meaning in the middle of a storm. I felt disoriented and way out of my norm.

Sleep was marginal. I got up several times to look out a window or check the barometer. The pressure dropped and winds accelerated, and for a brief time it fell out dramatically. Then it switched more westerly and picked up to hurricane force again, the Pamlico Sound rising 8 feet in what seemed only minutes.

I went to check on things, heading to the gallery door, in the lee of what seemed like a jet engine next to the house. Power lines were sparking like stars in the sky (upper left corner in video). The water came in very fast, bringing in a tide of vegetation and mud.

Click link below for video clip. It was shot at 4:45 not 5:30 as mentioned.


2014-07-04 04_45_30-2 – Medium

To be continued…