Evening GlowLupines watch as the last light of the day casts warm alpenglow on the Northern Presidential Range in New Hampshire's White Mountains. (Jefferson, New Hampshire) During the course of my career in corporate America I spent a lot of time on the road (or more accurately, in the air) and logged many miles back and forth across the United states and to Puerto Rico - seeing a great deal of the country in the process.
That said, I wasn't exactly hanging out in Northern New England. In fact, the first time I set foot in New Hampshire had nothing to do with a business trip; traveling to Boston for an impromptu "foliage weekend" I drove north to Rye and Portsmouth, and then on into Maine as far as Kennebunkport to have a look around.
Never in a million years would I have guessed then that I'd end up not just living in the Granite State - for many years, no less - but that I'd become so deeply attached to it. That I would explore what feels like nearly every square inch of it. That I'd spend countless hours capturing its beauty with my camera. That I would come to consider New Hampshire home just as much as I do my native Chicago.
Tranquility BaseThe Teton peaks reflected in the Snake River shortly after sunrise. (Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming) Relocating to Teton Country, by contrast, was an inevitability. I didn't want to leave the Northeast but when my husband purchased 40 acres in the Teton Valley the writing was on the wall. It was just a matter of when it would happen.
Suffice it to say the marriage between me and a semi-arid climate is not a match made in heaven.
I miss water. The canopy of abundant maples. Oaks. Green summers. Top soil. And I'm most definitely not a fan of the relentless high winds here in the Snake River Plain. Still, I adore Grand Teton National Park. It stole a piece of my heart the first time I laid eyes on it some 25-years ago. There are worse things than living in the shadow of the Tetons.
Back when I first visited the twin Teton Counties, though, I would have scoffed at the idea I'd one day live in the area (there was absolutely nothing inevitable about it at that point) - just as I couldn't have predicted I'd be a Granite State resident less than two years after that spur-of-the-moment road trip from Salem, Mass. up the coast to see the sights. It's funny how things turn out.
Interestingly, New Hampshire and the Tetons are my two favorite places to make photographs.
You never know for sure what's waiting at the end of the path. Sometimes it's a little bit of serendipity.
About the photos
Top: the lupines bloom in New Hampshire's White Mountains anywhere from late May until mid-June. It's a stunning show, with flowers ranging in color from white, pink, and peach to lavender, blue, and purple - along with some interesting hybrids. The year this photo was made many normally-prolific fields were sparse and the flowers were very late. I ventured further north than usual to find this field of purple spikes in Jefferson on the summer solstice. The black flies were thick that evening and left me covered with bites (to which I'm allergic) but the alpenglow on the northern Presidential Range was lovely; it was worth it.
Bottom: in early summer the landscape around the Teton Range is lush and green thanks to the runoff; meanwhile the mountains retain quite a bit of snow cover. In my opinion it's the prettiest time of the year. This photograph was made along the Snake River shortly after sunrise.
Keywords: Grand Teton National Park, Granite State, New England, New Hampshire, Northeast, serendipity, Tetons
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