Winter Walks

Originally published February 2013


We had a major snowstorm overnight on Feb. 8-9, and I couldn't resist a Central Park walk on Saturday afternoon. I wasn't the only one. The paths when I got there in midafternoon were packed and icy from multiple feet tromping on them. Nonetheless, it was a great day for photographs. Here are some snow pictures, and then some shots from a Feb. 6 walk on a cold but less snowy day.

This is the Lake, looking south. The tall building to the left is the culprit for the dangling crane after Hurricane Sandy that closed Carnegie Hall and caused all sorts of other problems (of course, the loss of music was criminal enough).

Gapstow Bridge, over the Pond near the Plaza, was quite beautiful, and quite crowded. The ducks were happy to be swimming, although I was tempted to throttle a little brat who was throwing snowballs (while his dad looked on with pride and snapped pictures) at the hapless mallards. I did speak up, but I guess with the walker I didn't seem as threatening as I might have with a cane!

The wood duck (see below, on the Feb. 6 walk) was still pretending to be a mallard and just trying to make it in New York! (If you can make it there, you'll make it ...)

These mallards, however, seemed happy to be mallards.

On Gapstow Bridge there were two miniature snow people looking at the crowd. Quite delightful. The bridge itself was so slippery that although I had the walker, I didn't attempt to cross it. Several nice people warned me about the danger, and I got to see one young lady take a fall. That was enough for me. I love this bridge. It was the location for my final shot in Picture This, directed by Lydia Galeno. It was 100 degrees on the shoot date, so I've been on this bridge in all kinds of weather.

My bird-watching cravings were well taken care of on this snowy day, thanks to people who left oranges in the trees and held out peanuts in the hand to attract an assortment of cardinals, wrens, sparrows and titmice. This cardinal put on quite a show at the northern side of the Lake, and the red-tailed hawk below hung out in a tree, silently waiting, until with a squawk he flew off.




On Feb. 6, 2013, I walked through Central Park and had quite a day with the camera. While I invite you to read below why losing weight, ducks and Silly Videos are related, I invite you here to see the pictures of the blue heron, the mallards and the wood duck I saw on a cold February afternoon. The photos, I hope, will give you an idea of why I'm having so much fun with my video projects.

This was the first (and only) wood duck I've seen at the Pond this year. It was quite magnificent, and just swam around with the mallards. Maybe he thinks he's a mallard?

Just blending in, just blending in.

The mallards, out for a swim.

And a blue heron, who took flight across the Pond, and back. I didn't capture that on camera, but did in my memory.

Meanwhile, at Bank Rock Bay, where the ice covered the water, I saw no ducks, but I did see duck prints on the snowy ice. The ducks themselves were in the Lake, going round and round in a pool surrounded by ice. This photo was one of the first I took on my walk, from the bridge separating the bay from the main lake.

These tracks put me in mind of Ancient Monster's paw prints (if you haven't yet read the last Saga, you might enjoy it on a cold, snowy night!).