After the sidecar rally at Caddo Lake in October, returned in November with a small group of photographers to capture the infamous red leaves of the bald cypress trees. The red leaves only last for a couple of weeks each year. Timing to be here during the peak is a roll of the dice.
Photographers come from all over the world to capture the colors. There were several tour boats going out the weekend we were there, on which no english was being spoken
The worms had stripped most the leaves off the cypress trees near the mainland, so we went out into the lake where there are islands of cypress that the worms could not reach. Guide called that "Social Distancing".
When I say island, the cypress survive best in 3-5 feet of standing water, not on dry land or in very deep water.
Here is a late afternoon shot of the trees glowing. What was amazing is how the color went from a dull red to a glowing red just by changing your position.
Even as the sun dropped lower in the sky, the famous colors remained strong.
Tried a similar shot but in black and white to compare the difference.
Sunset on Caddo Lake found us heading back to the dock.
We will go back out again in the morning, leaving at 5:30 am with a cup of hot coffee in hand.
Small point of imformation - Caddo Lake, which Texas shares with Louisiana, is the only natural lake in Texas. All of the other Texas lakes and bodies of water are manmade. It is north of Marshall, TX and Shreveport, LA. near one of the oldest settlements in Texas, Jefferson. During the 1800's. Jefferson was the second largest water port in Texas, after Galveston. It sits 300 miles north of the Gulf Of Mexico on the Caddo River.
By sunrise the guide and I are back out on the lake, in position for some great photos.
The day looks promising in the predawn light.
Suddenly a thick fog bank rolls in from the south. The sun never made it above the horizon before being obscured.
That does not stop one from trying to get interesting photos.
Foggy Red Cypress
Of course there are fishing birds around the lake, here one is skimming the surface looking for an opening and a meal. What looks like green ground you could walk on is actually an invasive Brazilian water plant called Salvinia. It floats on top of the water choking everything, other plants, boat motors, etc. The first cold snap will kill it, only to return next year.
Capturing that feeling of dripping Spanish Moss is more difficult than I thought it would be.
Then this showboating character arrived to complete the photo.
Am not into bird photography but wanted to recreate the mood of a damp foggy morning on the bayou. What better subject than a great white egret.
Spotted an old shack back up a small bayou, Yes, it's occupied. Hmmm... did not approach someone's fishing camp, or home.
The lack of sound in the bayou deafens the mind.
Almost disturbing not be submerged in constant noise.
The fog was not quite so bad in the bayou leading back to the dock.
Even the colors were starting to show again.
A little disappointed in not having
a brilliant sun to work with, but the fog presented new challenges for a different effect. One has to roll with the situation and find the best in whatever comes your way.
By mid-day the fog had dissipated, which by then I was off the lake and out riding. Stopped to take a photo of a tree farm after harvesting. This is a paper tree farm.
Could never understand why some people get so upset at the harvesting of trees but don't think twice about the harvesting of corn. Both strip their growing fields bare. Both are cultivated and grown for harvesting. The only difference is the length of the growth cycle.
It's not like they are not going to replant the trees. They did here.
These are still young trees. Trees engineered for paper use will grow very fast.
Off in the brush spotted movement, there looking back at me was a young doe.