Winter on the Beach

Yes, I know.  The beach is generally associated with warm sun and sand, beautiful blue water, yada yada yada, especially for those in colder climates who wish for a break from the winter weather.  The beach as a cold weather destination is not generally what folks are looking for.

Obviously I don’t fall into the category of “folks”!!

I decided to ring in the New Year for 2014 by traveling to one of my favorite areas, the Indiana Dunes along Lake Michigan (the few people who follow this blog have seen images from there several times already).  I was hoping for some interesting photo opportunities given the cold weather we have had in the Midwest the last few weeks.

I arrived in the area midday on Dec 31 and went to the West Beach area of the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.  I found exactly the kind of interesting “lakescape” I was looking for (did I just invent a word?  probably not).  There was a lot of ice floating on the lake and just enough snow on the beach to provide interesting abstract patterns.  This is one of the first images I took…

Sand and Snow abstract 1

Unfortunately I got there as a system was moving in and the clouds were covering the area quickly.  I took a few quick shots of the beach with a bit of blue sky showing…but didn’t have time to work this as much as I would have liked.  Here is the best of the group, though not my favorite…

Lake MI ice field

As the clouds moved in, I took a couple more shots with the intent of converting to black and white.  Something like this!

Lake MI ice field monochome

After taking this shot I had lunch and got myself settled into my hotel room.  I drove over to the Indiana Dunes state park and wandered out to the beach there, which looked surprisingly different.  First, there was little to no open water to be seen (note in the images above the darker areas just below the horizon are open-ish water).  Second, as I arrived it started snowing, and the blowing snow mostly obscured the horizon.  Finally, there were large chunks of ice mixed with sand along a couple sections of the shoreline that formed some interesting “features” along that beach that you don’t normally see.  Which led to several photographs similar to this one…

Frozen Lake Michigan ~ Frozen Sand

Yes, that really is a mix of sand and snow and ice that has formed and then somehow broken into large chunks.  I’d love to see how that happens some time…but for this trip I just enjoyed the results.

Finally, as I wandered the shore I found a mound of ice along the water’s edge and couldn’t resist using it as a foreground for a final lake shot.

Lake MI Round Ice

I would have loved to have gotten closer, but the ice was definitely NOT to be trusted.

All these images were taken on New Year’s Eve.  I’ll post a couple of shots from New Year’s Day over the weekend.  Not typical beach scenery, but exactly what I was hoping to find!

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3 thoughts on “Winter on the Beach

  1. Babe…I’m so happy that you got to fill your soul with the getaway to the Dunes. You are amazing! I love you and all the images that you capture! ~ Me

  2. Hello – I am interested in obtaining a print of a photo you have on your blog site. It is part of the Winter on the Beach series – the second one down on the page that includes a touch of blue in it.

    I would need the image enlarged to about 30″ wide to fit the space I’m looking to fill.

    Please let me know if this is possible. (Your ‘contact’ on your website was not working.)

    Thank you
    Jim Kendzior

    • Jim…sorry for the slow response. I have been traveling the last several days. I would be happy to discuss a print with you – that image you mentioned should easily accommodate a print that wide. Sorry the contact wasn’t working – I’ll try to send an email to you directly as well….

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