Missing! | Peter Matthews — Whispers and Echoes

Peter's pondering

Thank you, once more, to Sammi Cox for publishing my poem on Whispers and Echoes and helping me find my missing toe. To find out more, follow the link below:

I woke up this morning, was missing a toe Limped all round the house, oh where did it go? When going to bed I know I had ten I got up, looked down, I counted, and then I enlisted the help of my wife and my lad To find the lost item I know I[…]

Missing! | Peter Matthews — Whispers and Echoes

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Wolverines and the Endangered Species Act

Wickersham's Conscience

Wolverine in Sweden, 2013 (Photo Jonathan Othén, used under Creative Commons License)

WC has only seen three wolverines the wild. And none of them resulted in a photo.

WC saw the first on the third day of a torrential rainstorm, washed out of an attempt to climb Scott Peak, hiking out down Sunset Creek in Denali National Park. That wolverine was loping steadily upstream – the gait is unmistakable – on the other side of the flood-swollen creek in the hard rain, not looking any happier drenched than we did.

The second was on a canoe trip down the Delta River. Another canoe had capsized, and we were on the west bank, drying stuff out and warming the cold, wet folks up, when a wolverine came down a cut bank maybe 50 meters downstream on the other side of the river. The animal calmly drank a little water, sniffed the…

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Photography in Winter in Alaska

I’ll refer my professional photographer friend.

Wickersham's Conscience

Interior Alaska during summer enjoys long hours of daylight, much of it low, “sweet” light. It’s a nature photographer’s dream. Sure, there are mosquitoes, and sometimes days of rain, but generally, conditions are ideal. Especially the light. Sunrise and sunset last for hours.

Winter is another story. It’s long – six months or more. It’s dark – as little as 3.5 hours of feeble, nearly useless light. And it’s cold. A “warm” day is when it’s above zero, even insingle digits. But it’s the absence of usable light that frustrates a nature photographer the most.

And the next three months are the worst. Even at 1:30 PM, this little fellow:

Boreal Owl

required full flash, high speed and full aperture. Because lenses are made of different kinds of materials – glass, metal plastic – they contract at different rates when they get cold. Which makes them lock up. And batteries, even lithium…

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