This is a sunrise view of the lighthouse and pier at Kewaunee, WI – on the western shore of Lake Michigan.
That rock in the foreground isn’t actually a rock. It is an ice formation created by snow/ice breaking away from the shore and being trapped in the ice a few feet from shore.
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This was a glorious Sunday morning on the shore of Lake Michigan at Kewaunee, Wisconsin. This is a pre-sunrise shot. The colors were so vivid, I actually had to pull back the saturation. Even so it still may seem a little over done.
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As you know, winter has been reluctant to release its grip on Northeast Wisconsin. This is a scene that reminds me of the battle between warmth and cold. The cold seems to be winning, preventing the sun from having its full effect. We’re all believing for the sun to triumph, the ice and snow to melt and warmer summer breezes to induce the gentle sound of waves on Lake Michigan’s shore.
This is a view of the Kewaunee, Wisconsin lighthouse shortly after sunrise…as seen from the snow and ice-covered beach. To view a larger, more detailed version, click on the photo.
When extremely cold temperatures combine with the open water of Lake Michigan, it creates a foggy atmosphere. Take a calm morning – with no hint of a breeze – and mix the misty moisture in the air with those extremely cold temperatures and it will freeze to practically everything as a thick, but fluffy, frost. Wonderful stuff.
In the background, of course, is the well-known Kewaunee, Wisconsin pier and lighthouse.
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The ice in the harbor was thick enough to make getting out a challenge and it took quite a while for the boat to break through. It would push and crunch its way into the ice, traveling 20 or 30 feet at a time before it would be halted. Then it would back up and take another run at it…for the next 20 or 30 feet…back up and repeat until it finally got to open water. This shot shows it clear of the solid ice, heading out of the harbor. I’ve included a short video of the struggle below.
The Oliver H. Smith, is a commercial fishing boat built in 1944 at Kewaunee Shipbuilding and Engineering Co. during World War II. It was purchased in 1999 and is operated by Lafond’s Fish Market in Kewaunee.
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This was one of the last images I snapped on a very cold (below zero) morning of shooting. I’d been out there a lot longer than I would have thought – about an hour and forty-five minutes – but I found plenty to point my camera at. I was the only one braving the elements that morning. All of the footprints you see in the snow were made by me.
I had decided to call it a morning, was dismantling my equipment, folding my tripod and packing up to head home. I looked back over my shoulder and noticed the shadows from the tree and it drew me back for a few more minutes.
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This is another shot from a very cold morning in Kewaunee, WI. The open waters of Lake Michigan created enough moisture that everything along the shore was coated with a light, fluffy frost. This branch is a prime example.
If you look closely, you can see some little white specks (particularly on the right side). Those are little flakes of the frost falling like snow off the branch at the slightest movement of air.
Also, you will notice the Kewaunee lighthouse in the background. If you compare this photo with my previous post, You’ll be able to see this same branch from a very different perspective. Both photos were taken the same morning using different lenses. This one was 45 minutes or so after the other.
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This image accurately portrays the very cold conditions yesterday morning at the Kewaunee, WI harbor. The ice was slowly flowing past the channel marker, out into Lake Michigan. To get this shot, I had to walk out on the long, ice-coated pier to the lighthouse.
Rising early and enduring the cold (temperature around zero) produced some worthwhile “winter” scenes like this…with more to come. Stay tuned.
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Refraction: the fact or phenomenon of light, radio waves, etc., being deflected in passing obliquely through the interface between one medium and another or through a medium of varying density.
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