Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Change

This week, Amy asks us to share photos that focus on change. As we transition seasons, it is a fitting topic. I decided, instead, to focus on changing technology for the farmers at harvest time. For more info on the challenge post, check out Amy’s challenge post here. My response to the challenge focuses on the farmer’s all-around workhorse, the tractor. Continue reading


Frontier Village – A Drive Down Louis L’Amour Lane

Jamestown, North Dakota.

Over the years in our travels, we’ve stopped at recreated villages and historic towns in the old west from Goldfield and Tortilla Flat in Arizona to Deadwood, South Dakota and Cheyenne, Wyoming. North Dakota has a collection of villages that are great historic stops along the I-94 corridor. Bonanzaville in West Fargo focuses on the Bonanza farmers and homesteaders in the Red River Valley. Buckstop Junction in Bismarck highlights homesteaders and settlers put down roots in the Missouri River valley. Not to be left out, the largest community between Fargo and Bismarck has its own historic village. Continue reading

Cellpic Sunday – Rainbow Circles

Somewhere over North Dakota.

Yesterday I attended a meeting in Bismarck. This trip, I was a passenger and I left the flying duties to Chad, a flight instructor and head of our flight standards department in North Dakota Civil Air Patrol. The sun was behind us, still low in the sky, when we departed Fargo early in the morning aboard a Cessna 182. Reflected on the clouds ahead of us, we saw a circular rainbow. Over my two decades of flying, I’ve seen a few circular rainbows reflected on clouds below us. We were on an instrument flight plan which allowed us to remain at our altitude and fly through any clouds that happened to rise above our flight level. As we approached one of these higher cloud layers, I saw something I’d never seen before. We could clearly see the shadow of our aircraft on the cloud directly in the center of the circle.

The closer we got to the vertical wall of the cloud bank, the larger our shadow became until a fleeting moment just past this point when we disappeared into the cloud. The rainbow circle didn’t change in size, only the shadow of the aircraft.

The first appearance of the rainbow circle was when the cloud deck was lower. The further west we flew, the higher the deck. We stayed at the same 6000 feet for the duration of this photo set. Though the circle in the photo appears vertical, it was reflecting on the horizontal layer of clouds below us. I increased the saturation of the image to more clearly show the rainbow circle in this shot. In “real life”, the circle was only slightly more intense than the surrounding cloud layer. The dark bands are artifacts created on the camera sensor by the spinning propeller. These images were captured on my Samsung S7 cell phone. The rule for Cellpic Sunday is simple, the image must be captured on a mobile device.

John Steiner

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Windows

This week, Ann-Christine asks us to share images featuring windows. In some cases, they invite us to enjoy what is on the other side. At times, they show us a place we can never go. A window can invite us to another world or make us content to be exactly where we are. You can read the entire challenge post here. Continue reading

World’s Largest Buffalo – a 60-ton Giant in North Dakota

Jamestown, North Dakota.

Travel along the southern edge of our home state and unless you shun Interstates, you’ll find yourself on I-94. Crossing the Red River from Minnesota to North Dakota at Fargo, I-94 travels through Valley City, Jamestown, Bismarck, Dickinson and finally the small town of Beach where in just a few miles, it travels across the Montana border. Many years ago, we were westbound with the family and we noticed the giant buffalo on the southern edge of Jamestown. We pulled off the highway so our children could see the giant concrete sculpture. standing 26 feet (8 m) above the ground and high on a hill, it is an imposing work of art. Continue reading

Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Look Up

Tourists can’t help but look up when they visit new and interesting places. These photographer tourists are checking the skyline in Cartagena, Colombia with an eye toward some interesting architecture. Hopefully they will turn around to note the grand cathedral behind them.  It is officially known as the Metropolitan Cathedral Basilica of Saint Catherine of Alexandria. This week, Patti Moed challenges us to look up and share our view from below. You can read the entire challenge post here. Continue reading