Thursday, January 31, 2013

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Watery Wednesday - Ice House City

This is very typical of the Lakes area in west central Minnesota this time of year. Lake after lake with ice houses on them for fishing. Sorry, I just can't see myself spending much time in one of these looking a hole cut in the ice waiting for the fish to bite much less driving my vehicle on the frozen lake.

Nitche Lake Ice Houses - Perham, Minnesota

Big Pine Lake Ice Houses (this is just a small fraction of them) - Perham, Minnesota

Closer shot at Big Pine in the late afternoon

Linking to Watery Wednesday at Tricia's Bluff Area Daily. I am still catching up from last week's posts so bear with me. :-)

Monday, January 28, 2013

Barn Charm - Green Twins

Twin Green Roofs - Somewhere in North Central Minnesota

Linking to Tricia's Barn Charm. Click on the icon below. My apologies to the other participants...last week got very busy and I am behind on my visiting.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Another Nyberg

Good thing he really isn't out working the's too darn cold!

Ken Nyberg Tractor Sculpture - New York Mills, Minnesota

Another sculpture by Ken Nyberg.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Friday's Fences - St. Lawrence

St. Lawrence Cemetery - Perham, Minnesota

Linking to Friday's Fences hosted by Jan & Jer.

I Learned Something New Today

The past month here in Minnesota, and especially this week with the brutal well-below freezing temperatures, I have seen several sun-dogs that were almost vertical on the horizon. Of course, these sightings have been in the morning and late afternoon hours on my way to or from work. When I saw two at once, I knew I had to find out more information on the cause.

This is what I found (information courtesy of

Patches of light that sometimes appear beside the sun are called sundogs. The scientific name is parhelion (plural: parhelia) from the Greek parēlion, meaning "beside the sun." Speculation is that they are called that because they follow the sun like a dog follows its master. Sundogs (or sun dogs) are also referred to as mock suns or phantom suns.

Sundogs are formed from hexagonal ice crystals in high and cold cirrus clouds or, during very cold weather, by ice crystals drifting in the air at low levels. These crystals act as prisms, bending the light rays passing through them. As the crystals sink through the air they become vertically aligned, refracting the sunlight horizontally so that sundogs are observed. 

So now I understand why I am seeing these with increasing frequency lately. Of course, I might trade seeing these for seeing palm trees in 70 degree weather instead.

Morning of January 9th near Perham
Morning of January 21st near New York Mills
Afternoon Double with the Sun in the Middle on January 23rd near Perham

Linking to SkyWatch Friday.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Watery Wednesday - Banks Lake Feeder Canal

Part of the Columbia Basin Irrigation project, water is pumped from Lake Roosevelt (behind the Grand Coulee dam) up through a 1.6 mile long feeder canal into Banks Lake. From there the water is distributed via other canals, tunnels and reservoirs where it is used to irrigate over 60 different types of crops grown throughout central Washington.

Banks Lake Feeder Canal

Linking to Watery Wednesday at Tricia's Bluff Area Daily. Click on the icon below.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Barn Charm - Purple Power

I wish the lighting was better on this, but sometimes you have to take what you can get. This barn is dark purple!

Prairie Wetlands Learning Center - Fergus Falls, Minnesota

Linking to Barn Charm at Bluff Area Daily. Click on the icon below to visit.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Watery Wednesday - Pelican Rapids

If it's not otters around these parts in Minnesota, then it's pelicans! In Pelican Rapids, you can find a giant one by the falls in the center of town.

Pelican Rapids, Minnesota

Linking to Watery Wednesday at Bluff Area Daily

Monday, January 14, 2013

Barn Charm - Whatcom County

I saw this pretty little barn on a trip back from Canada at the end of last summer. All I remember it was in Whatcom County, Washington, possibly near Nooksack. This farm was kept in nice shape!

Whatcom County, Washington Barn

Tricia at Bluff Area Daily is our host each week for Barn Charm. Click on the badge below to see what others are sharing.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

InSPIREd Sunday - Wooddale Church

On previous trips to the airport in Minneapolis, I could see a tall spire lit up off to my left as I drove east along I-494 near Eden Prairie. Since I was headed for the airport to fly home, I didn't want to risk any detours to seek it out. However, on my last trip home for the holidays, I had an early morning flight and was staying at a hotel near the airport. This meant I would have time to go find this spire. In all honesty, I thought it would turn out to be a LDS temple but instead it was on an interdenominational church. As I pulled into their parking lot, I could see the spire was of an open grid work construction. It was really impressive. I wish I would have had my other camera but only had my point-and-shoot. I think it did an okay job of capturing this at night. It was bitter cold and the wind was blowing hard so I didn't want to stand outside of my warm car for too long. The photo is straight out of the camera with some minor cropping to remove a few unwanted elements.

Wooddale Church - Eden Prairie, Minnesota

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Sculptures by Ken Nyberg

On one of my explorations of Otter Tail County, Minnesota, I went to the town of Vining. On purpose, too. I had read of large sculptures being located there so I had to see them for myself. Weather conditions were less than optimal and the light for taking photos was terrible, but I went and did it any way. Who wants to be cooped up in a hotel room when the world is out there waiting for you?

Vining was easy to find and so were the sculptures. All of them are the creation of Ken Nyberg, a resident of Otter Tail County. His whimsical sculptures start out as scrap metal that are joined together into oversized works of art. Many of the sculptures are located in Nyberg Park and others are scattered throughout town and across the county.

I think one of my favorites was the astronaut sculpture. One of Ken's children is Karen Nyberg, a NASA astronaut who traveled to the International Space Station in 2008. If you have been following my blog, you might recall my excitement at finally going to Kennedy Space Center in Florida earlier this year.

I also liked the giant cup of coffee sculpture. 

A Few of the Sculptures by Ken Nyberg

I encourage you that if you ever have the opportunity to visit Vining (preferably in the summer months) stop into the store next to Nyberg Park, sign the guest book, and pick up the brochure about Ken's sculptures. Then get started on your own sculpture finding trip across Vining and Otter Tail County.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Skywatch Friday - December Morning

December Sunrise in the Methow Valley

Come join in the fun at Skywatch! Click on the banner below.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Watery Wednesday - Fergus Falls & Otter Things

It was a cold (what else is new?) and somewhat snowy day when I visited Fergus Falls located in Otter Tail County, Minnesota in mid-December.

Otter Tail River in Fergus Falls, Minnesota

Canada Geese Along the Otter Tail River

Large Otter Sculpture at Grotto Lake

Linking to Watery Wednesday at Bluff Area Daily.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Barn Charm - Lil' Red

Taken on a gray and snowy Minnesota day last December.

Near Vining, Minnesota

Linking up to Tricia's Barn Charm at Bluff Area Daily.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

InSPIREd Sunday - St. John's Lutheran

It's too bad about the wires in the photo, but I really liked the blue accents on this spire.

St. John's Lutheran Church - Otter Tail, MN

Saturday, January 5, 2013

I'm a Star

I tried to find out information on this building but struck out. It looks like it was an old school or church at one time.

UPDATE: I did some more research and found that is was an old schoolhouse. 

Near Fergus Falls, Minnesota

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Snow Fence

New year - new meme...I am linking up for the first time with Friday's Fences. This is just up the road from me. We went for a walk on Christmas Eve and I saw this so I had to take a picture.

Snow Covered Fence

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