Tagged: forest

When the Woods Are Scary: Enchanted Forests Like Brothers Grimm Broken Fairytales

October 18th, 2012 Permalink

Ah, the approach of Halloween seems to call upon a special spooky theme, but we’ve covered tombs for Tales from the Crypts, fields of Halloween horror via the corn maze craze, even a Lego Monster Mash before. So then we considered man-made haunted trails that people purposefully visit to be spooked for Halloween . . . but there are other times when a person is totally alone in some eerie forest that seems a bit enchanted. When the woods seem scary, it could be because you let your imagination run wild. It might be local folklore about a foggy forest, or a moody mist attached to legends and claims that the woods are haunted. How we interpret a setting may be our state of mind at the time, but artists of all kinds have taken to the forest for inspiration. J.R.R. Tolkien used Puzzlewood as his mystical, magical muse that inspired him to create the fabled forests of Middle-earth within The Lord of the Rings. In our Fall Fantasy post, we quoted Vincent Van Gogh as saying, ‘Keep your love of nature, for that is the true way to understand art more and more.’ Perhaps to truly enjoy these pictures, you may need to think of it like an art game….for each picture, imagine if you were all alone in these woods. We were curious what made the streak of fear strike the hearts of photographers who are out alone in the forest. All of these photos were tagged with words like spooky, dark, scary, foggy, or haunted; on any other day, and different state of mind, these might be interpreted as sweet alone time in nature. But tap into your inner artist and let your imagination run wild to “see” what the photographers saw when these “enchanted” woods seemed “haunted” or “spooky” or just flat-out Brothers Grimm scary. [66 'Scary' Pics] {At least it’s not 666?}

The misty forest Sequoia Bayview Trail, Joaquin Miller Park, Oakland, CA

The misty forest Sequoia Bayview Trail, Joaquin Miller Park, Oakland, CA. Instead of man-made Halloween haunted trail attractions, this is when a “horror” setting has been created by nature. Think of twisted fairytales and enter where the woods are scary. Imagine if you were all alone in these woods . . .. After you? Please take the Sandman’s hand and enter now. Photo #1 by Tom Holub

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Hiking Hocking Hills State Park: Waterfalls, Caves, Cliffs, Forests and Gorges

October 16th, 2012 Permalink

In Ohio, there is a gorgeous State Park that has undisturbed forests, cascading waterfalls, rugged cliffs, deep recess caves and mysterious gorges. The 2,356-acre Hocking Hills State Park is a place of adventure for nature lovers. It is embedded in Hocking State Forest and its three nature preserves includes Conkle’s Hollow. The park is divided into these five separate sections: Old Man’s Cave, Cedar Falls, Ash Cave, Cantwell Cliffs and Rock House. Hocking Hills State Park is about 3 hours away from Cuyahoga Valley National Park, the 10th most visited U.S. National Park in 2011. Both must be gorgeous in the fall season with the changing colors of autumn foliage, but we were struck by the beauty of the “greeness” at Hocking Hills. [47 Photos]

Cedar Falls at Hocking Hills State Park

Cedar Falls at Hocking Hills State Park. If you follow the Cedar Falls trail for a 1/2 mile, through an amazing terrain featuring a gorge and sandstone cliffs covered with moss, you come upon this 50-foot waterfall. Cedar Falls is one of the most photographed waterfalls in all of Ohio. Photo #1 by Todd Poling

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Animals Loving Autumn [40 PICS]

September 29th, 2012 Permalink

Fall and its brightly colored foliage has arrived. So here is a mixture of animals, autumn and quotes about this season.

Red fox caught mouse in bright foliage of fall forest

“Autumn, the year’s last, loveliest smile,” ~ quote by William Cullen Bryant. Like some people, some animals love autumn. Red fox with a mouse in the beautiful and bright foliage of the forest during the fall season. Photo #1 by KP

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Before Magnificent Mount Fuji Volcano Erupts…[46 PICS]

September 15th, 2012 Permalink

We haven’t done much looking around at Japan, other than Nara Dreamland, the abandoned Disney knock-off amusement park, but now the experts are red-alert claiming that Mount Fuji volcano is about to erupt. Mathematical models created in September 2012 by the National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention suggested that the pressure in Mount Fuji’s magma chamber could be at 1.6 megapascals higher than it was in 1707. The media jumped on this to claim as meaning an eruption of Mt. Fuji was imminent. We’ll leave that for the scientists to decide because nothing can be done to stop a natural disaster. Meanwhile, Mount Fuji has applied to be a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site. It’s been around in Japanese art since ancient times when samurai warriors trained at the base and women were forbidden from climbing to the sacred summit. Nowadays people travel from all over the world specifically to see this view; about 300,000 adventuresome souls climb to the summit annually. It’s thought Mount Fuji means “everlasting life.” Ironically at the northwest base of Fuji there are 14 sq miles (35-sq-km) that represent the opposite of life — the taking of life. Aokigahara Forest, also called the Sea of Trees, is infamous as a dense forest where troubled souls go to commit suicide. So we interrupt the scheduled panic and doomsday disaster news, to take in the beauty before it is allegedly destroyed in an eruption. Here’s the magnificent 12,389 ft (3,776.24 m ) Mount Fuji, one of Japan’s ‘Three Holy Mountains’ and the Suicide Forest. [46 Photos, 1 Video]

Tea fields and Mount Fuji

It’s all over the news; volcano researchers’ reports warning that an eruption of Mount Fuji in Japan is ‘looming’ and ‘imminent.’ While we certainly hope that such doom and gloom reports of Mount Fuji being a ‘ticking time bomb’ are wrong, we wanted to take a look at the magnificent beauty of the highest mountain in Japan. It’s located on Honshu Island, but towering in at 12,389 feet (3,776.24 meters), the active stratovolcano can be seen from so very many beautiful places in Japan. Here is Mount Fuji and seen from gorgeous green tea fields. Photo #1 by Fujisan

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Amazing Amazonia: Amazon Rainforest [46 Pics]

October 19th, 2011 Permalink

The “lungs of our planet” have been attributed to the Amazon rainforest, also known as Amazonia. This Amazon jungle, or the Amazon basin in South America, covers over 1.7 billion acres acres (7,000,000 square kilometers); the actual tropical rainforest is spread over 1.4 billion acres and 9 countries: Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana. 60% of the Amazon jungle is contained within Brazil. The Amazon represents over half the remaining rainforests worldwide and contains the largest and most species-rich tropical forest system on our planet. Amazonia grew around the Amazon River which is the longest river, the largest river, and the basin has the largest area in the world. The Amazon River has total flow greater than the top ten world’s rivers combined. The biodiversity of this wet tropical forest could boggle the brain; one in ten animal species lives here and it is the largest collection of living plants on the globe . . . and much of the Amazon is still unexplored. It definitely should be protected for the tropical jungle paradise may hold the keys, yet to be discovered, to cure countless diseases.The amazing Amazon rainforest is one of the 28 finalists in the New 7 Wonders of Nature competition. We love these pics! [46 Photos]

Red-and-Green Macaws DO grow on trees in the Amazon

The biodiversity in these wet tropical forests is mind-blowing. It is home to the largest collection of living plant and animal species in the world. One in ten known species on this planet lives in the Amazon Rainforest. Amazonia is home to around 2.5 million insect species, tens of thousands of plants, and more than 2,000 birds and mammals. So far, at least 40,000 plant species, 2,200 fishes, 1,294 birds, 427 mammals, 428 amphibians, and 378 reptiles have been scientifically classified within this region. One in five of all bird and fish species live here. The Scarlet Macaws above are indigenous to the American tropics. The photographer wrote, “Red-and-Green Macaws DO grow on trees in the Amazon.” Photo #1 by Billtacular

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Enchanted Adventure: Alpine Lakes Wilderness (38 PICS)

September 25th, 2011 Permalink

Alpine Lakes Wilderness consists of 390,000 acres of rugged wilderness spanning the Cascade Range of Washington state and parts of Wenatchee National Forest and Snoqualmie National Forest. There are over 700 mountain lakes and over 300 miles (480 km) of Forest Service class one and two streams. The terrain includes craggy peaks and ridges, deep glacial valleys, granite walls and forests that are picture perfect and ready to enchant visitors — especially in autumn. It is an adventurers’ delight: nature lovers, backpackers, mountaineers, hikers, photographers. We love these pics, but they are but a tiny slice of this Alpine Lakes Wilderness piece of heaven dropped down on earth for adventurers to enjoy. [38 Photos]

Enchantments basin from Prusik pass

Enchantments basin from Prusik pass. Enchantment Basin has been called the crown jewel of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness Area. Photo #1 by Jeffrey Pang

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Tribute to Tolkien: Magical Mystical Mossy-Green Muse for Middle-earth, Puzzlewood

September 2nd, 2011 Permalink

All writers and artists have a muse; for some it’s music, for some a person, place or thing, but fiction writers can take a place that is real and twist it until it’s flat-out fantasy. For high-fantasy author J.R.R. Tolkien, Puzzlewood was one such mystical, magical muse that inspired him to create the fabled forests of Middle-earth within The Lord of the Rings. John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was born on January 3, 1892 and died at age 81 on September 2, 1973. On this anniversary of his death, we wanted to pay tribute to Tolkien and Puzzlewood — his extraordinarily enchanted backdrop for Middle-earth. [26 Photos]

Magical Mystical Mossy Green Muse

Magical Mystical Mossy Green Muse: J.R.R. Tolkien saw much more than a woods in such settings. In his mind’s eye, Tolkien saw high fantasy forests which he then painted with words to describe Middle-earth. Photo #1 by Wallpaper Stock

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Abandoned Russian Riviera: Resort Paradise to Ruins [46 PICS]

June 21st, 2011 Permalink

Once upon a time, in a subtropical climate on Georgia’s Black Sea coast, there were glorious scenic wonders like beautiful beaches, lush wooded mountains, and buildings of grandeur at a resort paradise known as the Russian Riviera. But a bloody war erupted in Gagra and countless thousands were murdered, an extermination of the Georgian people. Gagra became a war-torn paradise resort in ruins. Now this “Russian Riviera” is an abandoned ghost town. [46 Photos]

Abandoned Gagry Beach - Paradise Gagra Resort to Ruins

Abandoned beach at paradise Gagra in Russia, resort to ruins. After several centuries of wars, in the late 1800s, the town was “discovered” by a member of the Russian royalty. Prince Peter of Oldenburg saw the potential of the subtropical climate and built Gagra into a resort on the Black Sea. He added a park with tropical trees and even imported parrots and monkeys to give it an exotic feel. It’s the warmest city on the Black Sea coast and beautiful beaches stretch on for miles. Like any posh resort in a warm location, both the beach and the surrounding mountains added to its charm and made Gagra a popular tourist destination. During World War II, it served as a health resort in Imperial Russia during the days of the Soviet Union for the rehabilitation of wounded soldiers. From then onward, Gagra grew in popularity and reputation into the “Russian Riviera.” Photo #1 by Svetlana Grechkina

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