Weekly Photo Challenge – Heritage

Fargo, North Dakota.

This week, Ben Huberman asks us to “share a photo that channels a living tradition, whether it’s your own or someone else’s.” In that post, he shared an image of a Reconciliation Pole. The pole, a 55-foot (16 m) long totem that commemorates a sad time in North American history while at the same time honoring the Native American heritage. You can read the entire challenge post here. Continue reading

Cellpic Sunday – 9 April 2017

Mandan, North Dakota.

For the week of April 3-8, the North Dakota Wing of the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) focused on our biennial Search and Rescue Evaluated Exercise. A large part of Civil Air Patrol’s mission focuses on Search and Rescue and Disaster Relief. As an Auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force, our non-combatant role is in service to our state.  To be sure we reflect positively on the Air Force, we are asked to demonstrate our skills in a week-long exercise. Continue reading

Weekly Photo Challenge – Security

Mandan, North Dakota.

This week, Krista asks us to feature something that signifies security. You can read Krista’s entire challenge post here. In the 19th Century, settlers traveled across the great plains territories and eventually settled in small communities throughout the upper midwest. Government troops provided security in forts built near these communities. Stockades, large fences, typically surrounded the forts and guard houses with high vantage points were constructed to provide an observation platform for the cavalry and foot soldiers to keep watch for Native Americans who weren’t always happy with their new neighbors. Continue reading

Cellpic Sunday – 5 March 2017

sakakawea-1Washington DC.

This week, I am spending a few days in our nation’s capital on Civil Air Patrol business. For my friends and family in North Dakota, I am bringing home this cellpic of Sakakawea, photographed in the Emancipation Hall at the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center. Sakakawea is linked to North Dakota because as a Shoshone child, she was captured by Hidatsa tribe in what is now North Dakota. Continue reading

But I Digress… Always Vigilant



Fargo, North Dakota.

Since my first flights as a youth in the 1960s, I’ve been interested in aviation. Our family didn’t have a lot of money, certainly none to be wasted on expensive aviation fuel, but a couple of lucky occurrences got me in the air at no cost to me.

Throughout my careers in electronics and education, and with the demands of raising a family, aviation was on my back burner. There was the occasional air show and business related trips, but other than that, I didn’t indulge in any activity that got me into the proximity of an airport.

This digression is brought to you by Stephen Bentley. Last week, he gave us a Travel Tuesday tour of The Ruins at Bacolod on Negros Island in the Philippines. He asked if I would share something about my aviation activities for his blog at Expat in Bacolod. Back to my digression…

Then 1996 happened, and a local airport had a fly-in, the aviation equivalent of a classic car get-together. Continue reading

Miss Mitchell – Monochrome Monday and Daily Post One-Word Prompt


Fargo, North Dakota.

Other than the blue sky, I could almost have left this image in color, and it would still have almost qualified as a “Monochrome Monday” photograph. The image above was captured at the Fargo Air Sho in 2015 where Miss Mitchell was a featured performer.

Miss Mitchell still flies and has an illustrious history serving in Italy and North Africa in World War II. This post is the confluence of three themes. One of the photo challenges I participate in on Facebook this week is #historic. Obviously, Miss Mitchell meets that criteria. It’s obviously Monday, so Monochrome Monday applies as I converted this image many months ago to monochrome via Lightroom. Finally, Ben Huberman’s Daily Post feature is “Shine“. The reflections on the nose of Miss Mitchell clearly demonstrate the shiny, highly reflective aluminum finish.

Some historical facts about Miss Mitchell include an unblemished wartime career with no fatalities in over 130 missions, an uncommon record. Built by North American Aviation, about 9,000 aircraft were built. Today, only about 30 survive, unlike Miss Mitchell, many no longer fly and live in museums around the country.

Powered by two 1,700 horsepower Wright R-2600 engines, the aircraft can climb to its service ceiling of 24,000 ft. (7315 m). A full load of fuel can carry Miss Mitchell 1,350 miles (2172 km) at a cruise speed of 230 mph (370 kph). Most of these facts were gleaned from the website maxair2air.com (more photos and details about Miss Mitchell can be found here.)

John Steiner

Turtle River State Park – Sunrise in the Park

turtleriversunrise-3Arvilla, North Dakota.

A short few weeks ago, I posted a gallery of photos from the Turtle River State Park, just 20 miles or so west of Grand Forks, North Dakota. You can review that gallery here. This trip was an overnighter as we wanted to catch both a sunrise and sunset in the park. As it turned out, the evening was cloudy, so no sunset pics graced that gallery. Continue reading