Summer at Parker Brook

The cascading horsetail at Parker Brook Falls in Savoy, MA. (Michael J. Clarke)
The cascading horsetail at Parker Brook Falls in Savoy, MA. (Michael J. Clarke)

While it may be a bit lesser known than the Northern areas of New England, the Western Massachusetts landscape is full of some of the most rugged and pristine natural forest areas of the Northeast region of the United States.

This location fits the title of a hidden gem deep within the rural forests of Savoy Massachusetts. Nestled beside the better known Tannery Falls, this scene captures the upper horsetail of Parker Brook Falls while lined with moss and the lively greenery of the summer months. The flow and the vibrance of the scene demonstrate the rugged landscape of the area in pristine form.

Green Summer

The vibrant forest land of Minuteman National Park on a warm June afternoon. (Michael J. Clarke)
The vibrant forest land of Minuteman National Park on a warm June afternoon. (Michael J. Clarke)

One of my favorite characteristics about the New England landscape is the degree of change that is reflected on the area as the different seasons come and go. The lush and alive vibrance of summer is what gives the cold and empty feelings of winter such stark contrast, and it really is a beautiful thing.

I came upon this layered scene of sunlight and forest life on a warm June afternoon and was struck by the complexity of the forest in front of me. From the floor to the treetops the growth and vibrance of summer was in full swing at this moment, and it’s a stunning time of year within the local landscape.

The Misty Mountains

The trees and misty mountains during a summer afternoon in Pinkham Notch, NH. (Michael J. Clarke)
The trees and misty mountains during a summer afternoon in Pinkham Notch, NH. (Michael J. Clarke)

Crawford Notch includes some of the most rugged landscapes of New England, and they are easily some of the best photographic lands of the area. The Mount Washington area is known for it’s quickly changing and unpredictable weather, and even in the summertime it’s hard to tell exactly what the weather will bring or how quickly it might change.

I made this picture on a summer afternoon that included both rain and sunshine, and this moment captured the blending of both conditions as fog and storm clouds rolled through the valley while the sun broke through simultaneously and illuminated the green forests of the area.

Crawford Colors

Autumn foliage in Crawford Notch, NH. (Michael J. Clarke)
Autumn foliage in Crawford Notch, NH. (Michael J. Clarke)

The explosion of color that descends upon the New England landscape during the month of October makes for easily one of the most visually magical times of the year. The colors shine especially brightly within the rugged mountain areas of Crawford Notch, and I made this picture on a warm autumn evening when the clear and crisp mountain air allowed the tree colors to glisten like lanterns in the forest.

Square #4 – The Cascades

The Waterville Valley Cascades on a summer afternoon. (Michael J. Clarke)
The Waterville Valley Cascades on a summer afternoon. (Michael J. Clarke)

There are tranquil and incredible locations all throughout New Hampshires White Mountains region, and the Waterville Valley Cascades are no exception. Seen here on a warm summer afternoon, the rugged series of waterfalls meander through the rocky landscape with a sublime level of natural beauty.

Square #2 – Point Judith

Point Judith Light on a cold January evening. (Michael J. Clarke)
Point Judith Light on a cold January evening. (Michael J. Clarke)

Despite being the smallest state in the USA, Rhode Island is an awesome one and has plenty of landmarks that are interesting and absolutely worth checking out, and Point Judith is no exception. At the far edge of the picturesque coastal town lies Point Judith Light, and it was shining with glory on this cold and crisp January evening.

Square #1 – Moss Glen

Moss Glen Falls - Granville, VT. (Michael J. Clarke)
Moss Glen Falls – Granville, VT. (Michael J. Clarke)

Situated along the stunningly scenic northbound drive on Route 100 in Granville, VT is Moss Glen Falls which is a pristine gem of the New England landscape. I love checking out the location as the seasons come and go and while the waterfall changes in form and flow it’s a stunning location all throughout the year.

Sunset over Jost Van Dyke

Within my photographic adventuring, I photograph a lot of sunsets. They are the time of the day where the world is typically most vibrant, and I particularly love how their intensity grows rather than retracts as it does during sunrise.

Its a time of day that I try to stay keenly aware of, as they are something that take form with changing conditions and when the atmosphere aligns just right, they cast our landscapes in profoundly beautiful lighting conditions. The sunsets in the British Virgin Islands like this scene below rarely disappoint. They are a landscape that is particularly perfect for sunset conditions, as the remote islands and vast oceans add a lot of character to the stunning scenery. Jost Van Dyke, the little island off in the distance within this scene, was nested perfectly within this scene as a vibrant sunset cast its painterly warmth upon the island setting on this Caribbean evening.

A vibrant sunset over Jost Van Dyke seen from Cane Garden Bay on Tortola. (Michael J. Clarke)
A vibrant sunset over Jost Van Dyke seen from Cane Garden Bay on Tortola. (Michael J. Clarke)

Sunset Lines

They say that straight lines are hard to find in nature, and as a general concept it is certainly true. However, one of my favorite linear formations is the resoundingly beautiful straight line of the horizon. No matter where we stand, the horizon represents a perfect separation between the ground we walk upon and the endless sky that we look up and glance towards. This division is profound, and came together in a beautiful fashion during this sunset that I photographed from New Silver Beach in North Falmouth, MA.

Sunset at New Silver Beach in North Falmouth, MA. (Michael J. Clarke)
Sunset at New Silver Beach in North Falmouth, MA. (Michael J. Clarke)

Great Thatch Island

I recently spent a week sailing down in the British Virgin Islands which is basically paradise on earth, just a remarkably scenic and relaxing place that is enjoyed by some of the friendliest people on the planet. There is a lot to say about the culture and the landscape down there, but while making pictures its often the remote seclusion that strikes me most profoundly, and the spots like Great Thatch Island find those adjectives as well as anywhere on the planet.

Great Thatch Island in the BVI's. (Michael J. Clarke)
Great Thatch Island in the BVI’s. (Michael J. Clarke)