Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Stone Mountain Sunday And Giveaway Winners!

 Hey! We just bought a new camera which was a floor model so we got a great deal on it.  It has a 12x zoom lens which is three times better than the one we had!  Richard is the photographer.  Let's see what it can do on Stone Mountain!   The photo above is at the beginning of the walk up trail and the sun looks and feels so nice coming through those pine trees... 

 And the sunlight falling upon those rocks...just such a lovely sight!
 Up ahead there, is just about the steepest part... you might recognize it from some of my earlier posts on Stone Mountain. 
 This little cedar tree was at the top of the mountain and I took Richard's photo beside it... Richard said to say that this was really some tramp on top of the mountain, but you know it's him, right? ( That just reminded Richard of an example of bad grammar from his old school textbook: the gist of it was that the police were searching for a vagrant in the forest but the student had supposedly written that the "police had gone for a tramp in the woods." )
 Okay, I've given the camera back to Richard now and that's me in the pink jacket with the Atlanta skyline in the distance.  Atlanta is about eighteen miles away....
 The blue of the sky and the blue of the water... I really loved this shot!
 Guess what?  We stopped and spoke for about ten minutes with this man who likes to walk up the mountain and play his guitar and sing.  His name is Tony Taylor and he told us he saw the filming of a movie just that week.   They actually filmed it on the walk-up trail at Stone Mountain and the movie is called "The Killing Season" and stars Robert DeNiro and John Travolta.  So, watch out for the movie when it is released and let me know if you recognize Stone Mountain!
 This is the Confederate Memorial Carving on the face of Stone Mountain. It is really very large but since the mountain is so big, it's a bit hard to imagine how big it is until you see some close up photos of it.
 This is an erythronium or "trout lily"...called "trout" due to the mottling of the leaves.  These were just beginning to bloom.   This is on the Cherokee Trail which skirts around Stone Mountain and goes in front of the Confederate Memorial Carving.  Most of these plants were just pushing themselves up through the rich earth and thick layer of leaves.
 There, can you see me in my pink jacket?  Look how small I look next to the trees and the mountain.  The book that we have on Stone Mountain says the trees have the nutrient-rich  minerals which wash off the mountain, and therefore that is why they are so healthy.  This explains why everything that is on this trail is so magificently beautiful...  We took photos on this same trail in the autumn, if you go back and look at the early November posts from last year, this walk when the leaves are turning color are just a stunning sight.  Even the winter has a charm all its own.  It was still very sunny, we are just in the shadow of the mountain...
 We would like to know the name of this tree which has a very smooth bark and holds its leaves through the winter...it was so pleasant to walk and hear these leaves rustling as we passed...
 Now, we have made it to  the Grist Mill, back in the sunshine!  Richard and I had our coffee here and he gave me the camera and I took a few shots! 
 The lake beside the Grist Mill is just so blue and looks so pretty with that blue sky!
 There are lots of trees and bushes that are quite old near the Grist Mill.   A camellia is a welcome sight, especially in February! This flower was above my head (it must be old since it is so tall) and I used the zoom lens on it!

Richard has the camera back now, and he has taken a photo of the mountain as we are going back to our car to go home.  This is the Crossroads Area which has the shops and the stores and activities for the young and the young at heart!

Now, for the giveaway!  I had 14 commenters and have just written all the names on slips of paper and asked my son to draw a name from the hat and it is... 
Scriptor Senex! (www.scriptorsenex.blogspot.com)  Congratulations! I hope you will like the book on Stone Mountain! Look at my profile and please email me your address!

  Oh wait, couldn't we just have something that I have crocheted as a second little giveaway? Sure, I can, it's my blog!  Another name has been drawn and it  is ...Audrey! (www.audreygoeslocal.blogspot.com).  Audrey, would you please send me an email and I will get this in the mail ASAP!
 That was fun... I'll have to think of another giveaway soon!  Thank you all for reading my blog and commenting!  I really appreciate it more than you can know.


  1. Well, what a gorgeous place! Its rugged,and the water so clear. The trees incredibly tall, all that blue. And with the city so close. Just loved being able to see it throught the eye of your new camera

    1. Dear Julie,
      Thank you! Richard thought that the camera might show a bit too much blue, but I think it captured the blue that I saw with my eyes!
      When you turn around to see the skyline, you often hear children say, "Look, NEW YORK CITY!"

  2. Firstly - whoopee - I won, thank you very much. I'll e-mail you my address.

    Secondly, a new camera - whoopee.

    And thirdly a whoopee for a Camelia in February - how fortunate you are.

    I loved the clarity of the Atlanta skyline. Could the tree with its leaves on be a Beech of some sort? Perhaps a close up of the leaves some time?

    And lastly - as soon as I saw the Confederate Memorial Carving I realised I had seen it before on your blog - so silly me for my question on the last post. I deserve very low marks for paying attention and humbly apologise! Neverthgeless, a reminder of its history would not go amiss for those of us who have forgotten and for any of your more recent readers.

    Take care,

    1. Yay! so glad you won, and I will get that book to you soon!
      There is another photo of the skyline that is even better, when I find it I will post it.
      A beech, even that helps me...I will research it. Thanks!
      Oh, don't worry about remembering the carving...it's amazing how large it is, you will know when you get your giveaway book! Richard just got a big book on the Civil War from the library, might just have to do a post on the Civil War and the carving on Stone Mountain!
      We think we will have fun with this new camera!

  3. Hello Kay:
    Stone Mountain and the surrounding landscape is truly on a monumental scale. You capture that brilliantly with the new camera with the most amazing images here. It is so liberating we find to be amongst Nature in all its glory and be reminded of how small we humans actually are in the great scheme of things.

    The Confederate Memorial Carving is most intriguing. We had never heard of it before and it really does make an impression on the landscape.

    The 'Trout Lily' which you show we think is an Erythronium not a Trillium. The other common name is 'Dog's Tooth Violet' as the bulbs look just like dog's teeth. They are amongst our favourite spring flowers, so elegant and yet so tough. What an inhospitable position the one you show seems to be growing in.

    Thank you so much for sharing your visit with us. It has been an eye opener.

    1. Thanks so much on the info on the little flower. I have made the correction. And hey, ALL flowers have to fight very hard in Georgia, at least the earth around Stone Mountain is rich, mostly it is hard red clay that they have to push through...
      I will do a post on the Confederate Memorial Carving, look out for it!

  4. Congratulations to the winners!

    This has got to be yout finest Stone Mountain post yet! Where do I begin, lol! That shot with the Atlanta skyline is wonderful - what a juxtaposition between two worlds. The Confederate Memorial carving is stunning as is the height of those trees.

    The colours are so bright and your images so crystal clear in these pics - it must be the new camera.

    1. Dear Jane,
      Thank you!
      Richard really does have a better shot of the skyline, as soon as I find it, I will have it on my post that I plan to do about the carving!

  5. these are very fine shots. I specially like the one with the pond and the stones and the reflections. Does my heart good to see blue skies like that... aaahhh....

    1. Dear Jenny,
      The photo of the pond on top of the mountain with the bright blue sky behind it...ahh, that just takes my breath away, that view! I didn't TAKE that photo but I asked Richard to take it, I think I would have been a good movie director!

  6. Absolutely stunning photographs. The Confederate Memorial Carving is incredible.

    1. Dear Tracey,
      Thank you! I think we will have fun with this new camera!
      Look out for a future post about the carving!

  7. Hi Kay,
    I haven't seen any Trout Lilies blooming yet, nice find. I have heard via the web they were out. Yes, they do look a bit like a trillium but, As your friends have already said, they are not. You can read about them here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erythronium
    Still a lily though, as are trilliums.
    And, yes, that is a beech tree. My mother always liked to tell people that it held its leaves until spring.
    I haven't been to Stone Mountain in decades. I see it on I-85 where 316 comes into it. Always wish I could get a picture there on a clear day.
    Love the photos you posted.

    1. Hey!
      They do look a lot like trillums though, don't they?
      To be honest, if I had not read your blog, I would not have been looking for them...they were just beginning to bloom, but you could tell that others were coming up.
      So, thanks to you, I noticed these little beauties, whatever they are called!
      Oh, and they are beech trees! Thanks for that!
      Why don't you get yourself to Stone Mountain? It's beautiful at any time of the year!

  8. Congratulations to all the winners!

    These pictures are beautiful! What kind of camera did you get? I'm looking into getting an SLR; my first. Right now I use a pocket-sized one, which works well, but the SLR would be a big step up for me.

    Anyway, your photos are great. I love that bright blue, especially that sky. And the guitar player is a fabulous shot!

    1. Dear Martha,
      Thanks! And I took the photo of the guitar player-YAY!
      Our new camera is a Canon PowerShot SX130. We think that we will really like it. Richard took a video of the water fountain at the Monastery and the stones in the bottom of that fountain, the picture is just crystal clear...too bad I can't post videos on my blog!

  9. Glad you got to see the trout lily even if it was at Stone Mountain rather than Bradley Mountain. They're pretty, aren't they? :-)

  10. Hey JSK!
    Oh yes, thanks! We just went to Bradley/Arabia Mountains and we saw lots of wildflowers just beginning to bloom. We went on Tuesday and we went in between the showers and there wasn't a soul there, heavenly!