Go See Do Photography

A Lot of Travel, A Little Bit of History, and a Whole Bunch of Photos

Author: Ashleigh (Page 1 of 46)

Wordless Wednesday: Canopy Walk

Hiking Sleeping Bear: Alligator Hill

View from the lookout on the Alligator Hill Trail

This past summer, we took a weekend camping trip to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Located on Lake Michigan, just south of Traverse City, Sleeping Bear Dunes is one of the most beautiful places in the state! Usually, when we visit the dunes, we head for the Empire Bluff Trail, which ends in one of the best lookouts in the state. This time, we decided to try something different and hike the Alligator Hill Trail, one of the most popular trails in the park.

Although longer than the short Empire Bluff Trail, Alligator Hill was an easier hike. It was a gradual uphill for most of the 1.3 mile hike to the lookouts. By avoiding the intermediate and advanced trails and stopping at each of the lookouts, this hike is 4.1 miles round trip, but much less strenuous than climbing to the top of Empire Bluff. The view from the overlooks was nice, but it didn’t compare to the striking sand cliff at Empire Bluff.

After hiking Alligator Hill, I have some recommendations for hikers at Sleeping Bear Dunes. If you are looking for a fairly easy day hike, with some nice views, you can’t go wrong with Alligator Hill. If you’re up for something a little more strenuous with absolutely amazing views, hike Empire Bluff. I was glad we hiked the Alligator Hill trail, but the next time we’re at the dunes, we will go back to Empire Bluff instead!

Thanks for stopping by! Be sure to come back next week to read more about our weekend at Sleeping Bear Dunes! To read about some of our previous trips, click here. If you like my photos be sure to “like” my Facebook Page, follow me on Instagram! You can purchase prints on Etsy and Fine Art America. To see inside my camera bag, check out my Gear Page. For information about our new Guided Photography Tours, visit GuidedPhoto.com.

Wordless Wednesday: Autumn Reflection

National Museum of the United States Air Force

Astronaut at the National Air Force Museum

This summer, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, we took a trip to Ohio to visit the Armstrong Air and Space Museum and The National Air Force Museum. The Air Force Museum is located at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base near Dayton, Ohio. The museum is absolutely huge and after starting our day in Wapakoneta and driving over an hour additional to Dayton, it didn’t leave us with much time to explore. At first, we didn’t realize how big the museum is and spent too much time in the Civil War to World War II exhibit. Yes, the museum has artifacts dating back to the Civil War! Before this visit, I had no idea air travel played a role in the 19th century (below)!

Unfortunately, we didn’t have time to explore the exhibits dedicated to the Korean War, Southeast Asia, or the Cold War as we made a mad dash to check out the space exhibit. We were there to celebrated the moon landing, after all. The space exhibit reminded me of visiting the Kennedy Space Center and exploring the missile garden. If you are looking to go in-depth in the space program, The Air Force Museum is not the place to do it. They do have a cool flying astronaut (top), but it is much more set up to tell the story of the Air Force, not NASA. If you are looking for that, definitely check out Armstrong Air & Space or head down to Florida and the Kennedy Space Center.

Early army pilots flying a blimp

I will have to plan another trip back to this area to see the parts that we missed! I really wish I could’ve explored the Presidental Air Craft and the uniform exhibits! I’m not in any way a military fanatic, but it was interesting to look into a very specific part of our history. We will probably pair a return visit with visit to the nearby Wright Brothers National Museum. If you are in the Dayton area, The National Museum of the United States Air Force is a huge museum and not to be missed! The museum is free to visit, although since you are entering an Air Force base, you do have to go through security.

Thanks for stopping by! To read about some of our previous trips, click here. If you like my photos be sure to “like” my Facebook Page, follow me on Instagram! You can purchase prints on Etsy and Fine Art America. To see inside my camera bag, check out my Gear Page. For information about our new Guided Photography Tours, visit GuidedPhoto.com.

Wordless Wednesday: Fall Bridge

Fall in Michigan: Midland Canopy Walk

The leaves had begun to change, it was a beautiful Saturday and I wanted to get outside. Hoping for extra color, we hopped in the car and headed north. I had heard about the Canopy Walk at Dow Gardens in Midland and was hoping that would be a great spot to do some leaf-peeping.

There were two problems with my plan. Problem number one: the colors in Midland were not as vibrant as I expected. Both vibrant colors were seen on both sides of the freeway, but once we moved onto the back roads, we saw more green than I was hoping for. Problem two: everyone else seemed to have the same idea. The canopy walk was wall to wall people. Being that it opened earlier this year, this shouldn’t have surprised me, but you just can’t get a good forest experience with all those people around.

Even though it’s advertised as a great way enjoy fall, the canopy walk is mainly in an evergreen forest. Even at peak fall colors, you won’t see a big difference on the canopy walk. My favorite part was exploring the pond area of the forest. Everyone was up on the canopy walk (left) so it wasn’t busy. There are even chairs to sit in and enjoy nature. I enjoyed playing with the floating leaves and the water’s reflection (top).

Overall, we enjoyed Dow Gardens. At peak colors (probably this week) it will be breathtaking. I would love to come back and explore the gardens in the spring or early summer when the flowers are in bloom. I would like to come back with my flora loving family. If you would like to avoid crowds, the middle of the week is probably best.

Thanks for stopping by! To read about some of our previous trips, click here. If you like my photos be sure to “like” my Facebook Page, follow me on Instagram! You can purchase prints on Etsy and Fine Art America. To see inside my camera bag, check out my Gear Page. For information about our new Guided Photography Tours, visit GuidedPhoto.com.

Wordless Wednesday: Tugboat

Mainley Acadia Recap

Wow! The trip was at the end of June and its the middle of October and I have finally finished my recap. As you can tell, it was a very busy trip that covered a lot of Mt. Desert Island. We were able to do all of the things that we weren’t able to do on our short visit last year. We hiked South Bubble Mountain and explored the carriage roads. Chris did several other solo hikes that I still need to get him to write about for you.

We watched the sunset over Cadillac Mountain from the water and explored waterfalls I didn’t even know were in the park. We saw several lighthouses and explored the Schoodic side of the park. We visited both the winery and brewery on the Island and spent time exploring Bar Harbor. We stayed in both Southwest and Northeast Harbor and spent time in both towns.

The Terrace Grill in Bar Harbor

We also got to do some shopping and enjoyed a lot of good meals. We picked up some fresh Maine lobster and cooked it at home, which Chris did not enjoy killing. Our first meal in Maine was at a place called The Liberal Cup in Hallowell, Maine. We enjoyed the views at Jordan Pond House and The Terrace Grill in Bar Harbor. We found a breakfast place we enjoyed within walking distance of our house in Southwest Harbor called Sips. We dined for a cause at the Common Good Cafe. Our final Maine meal was at a local hangout in Portland called Becky’s. In all of these places, TripAdvisor helped up find delicious, memorable meals that would otherwise fly under the radar!

After a week in Maine, have I seen it all? Absolutely not. I think I got my Mount Desert Island fix, though and I now I want to spend more time in Portland and I want to go back to Hallowell. I would like to see Castine, as well. Bar Harbor is the biggest tourist area in Maine and I would like to see places where most people don’t go. So, I will definitely have to return to Maine!

Thanks for stopping by! To read more about this trip, visit the Mainely Acadia Trip Report page. To read about some of our previous trips, click here. If you like my photos be sure to “like” my Facebook Page, follow me on Instagram! You can purchase prints on Etsy and Fine Art America. To see inside my camera bag, check out my Gear Page. For information about our new Guided Photography Tours, visit GuidedPhoto.com.

Wordless Wednesday:

Mainely Acadia: Portland Head Lighthouse

After our carriage tour, we began heading south for our final night of the trip in Manchester, New Hampshire. Just like on our trip last year, we broke up the drive by stopping at a few of Maine’s notable lighthouses.

One place we stopped to stretch our legs was the Penobscot Narrows Bridge and Observatory (left). The Penobscrot Narrows Bridge is a unique structure and there are only a handful of other bridges like it in the country. One of the most notable features of the bridge is the observatory housed with in that was the first of its kind.  At 450 feet tall, the observatory offers views of Penobscot Bay, the river, and the nearby Fort Knox History Site (no, not that Ft. Knox). Due to the amount of road we had to cover that day, we were unable to go up into the observatory, but it is definitely on my list for my next Maine trip!

Of course, we also stopped at the famous Portland Head Light (top). Portland Head Light is probably one of the most iconic structures in Maine and is recognizable by people who have never stepped foot in the state. If you are going to be in the Portland area, you have to stop by! My only regret is that we were unable to stay for sunset. Recently, I have seen some gorgeous pictures here at sunset and when the sea is rough! My shot of Portland Head is probably one of my favorites from this trip!

After leaving the lighthouse, we left Maine and made it to our hotel room near the Manchester airport where we had an early morning flight back to Michigan the next day. I can’t believe this trip report is done! Be sure to check back next week for my final thoughts on my Mainely Acadia trip!

Thanks for stopping by! To find out more about this trip, visit the Mainely Acadia Trip Report page. To read about some of our previous trips, click here. If you like my photos be sure to “like” my Facebook Page, follow me on Instagram! You can purchase prints on Etsy and Fine Art America. To see inside my camera bag, check out my Gear Page. For information about our new Guided Photography Tours, visit GuidedPhoto.com.

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