Tagged: woods

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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Acadia National Park: 9th Most Visited U.S. National Park in 2011 [40 PICS]

April 28th, 2012 Permalink

Acadia National Park along the rugged coastline of Maine may not be the first place that jumps to mind when thinking about America’s busiest parks, but maybe it should come to mind in the top 10 because it was the 9th most visited U.S. national park in 2011 with over 2,300,000 visitors. Acadia and Cuyahoga switched places from 2010, when Cuyahoga Valley National Park was ranked 9th in visitors. Acadia National Park protects more than 47,000 acres of lakes, ponds, woodlands, granite-domed mountains, and ocean shoreline along the coast of Maine. There are more than 140 miles of hiking trails, 45 miles of historic carriage roads, and scenic park roads for drivers. Diverse wildlife, waterfalls, cliffs, stone bridges and scenic vistas can all be found on this cluster of islands that make up Acadia. Hikers, bikers, horseback riders, kayakers, climbers, bird watchers and photographers are among the nature lovers who visit Acadia National Park. [40 Photos]

Mount Desert Island, Wild gardens of Acadia NP

The largest island along the rugged coast of Maine is Mount Desert Island. A cluster of islands make up Acadia National Park. The photographer called this the ‘Wild gardens of Acadia NP.’ Photo #1 by Liz West

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Kaleidoscope of Autumn Colors is Heaven on Earth [46 PICS]

October 7th, 2011 Permalink

There is no doubt that ISS astronauts have enviable and breathtaking views of Earth, but when the fall season transforms foliage into a kaleidoscope of colors–rich hues of reds, yellows, oranges and browns, autumn is heaven as seen on Earth. As fall bursts upon the forests, changing them from green to vivid autumn colors, the tantalizing seasonal change can be seen from space. Yet astronauts may envy us for our beautiful view. Here’s a look autumn as seen from high above Earth, then zooming down to enjoy Indian Summer and the kaleidoscope of autumn colors that make our great planet a bedazzling fall spectacular. [46 Photos]

Autumn Waterfall at Sunset

Waterfall during an autumn sunset. When scenes are as beautiful as this, it makes us want to dive right into the picture to live in that captured moment. Photo #1 by Forest Wander

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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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