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In Memory of Trees

On my recent all-too-short trip north I stopped to visit the aspen clonal colony shown below. I need to enjoy this image, because it will be impossible to make another like it there – most of the colony has been cut, leaving only a thin strip through which I could see the bulldozers and bare earth beyond.

I am glad at least part of the colony survived, though. If it's not all cut down, it could very well survive and grow back to its former glory sometime in the future after today's new development is long gone and forgotten.

Maybe I'm showing my age, but I take great comfort in contemplating the natural beauty that at least has the potential to be here for the generations to come.

As always, I welcome your thoughts & comments below!

– Jack

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  1. Jack, I am very sad to hear this story as it happens too often to see scenes like that. In such moments I feel so weak, so broken at my heart that it takes much effort to regain the power to work and do something good for this Earth.
    It seems to me that I know human nature very well, but when I witness situation you have described, I can’t really understand us, human race.
    I think that maybe it would be good to show in one image the evidence of people’s activity in this place? Maybe it would make a greater impact on some people?
    Anyway, I am happy that there are people like you with heart, mind and soul in right places:)

    Greetings from Poland Jack:)

  2. Hi, Danuta –

    I know just what you mean… I take comfort, though, in knowing that in Nature there is never an end, only change. This aspen, if not destroyed entirely, could survive another thousand years; and even if this one is killed, something else will take its place eventually.

    Nothing lasts forever but the earth and sky – and even they only have 3 or 4 billion years before the sun expands and destroys the planet… Everything flows!

    Thanks for stopping by!

    – Jack

  3. Us humans need to do much better at keeping wildness, the web that holds life as we know it, together. I too hope we can find the wisdom to protect our natural world, both for our current generations as well as for those to come. Good post.

  4. I hope so, too, pj, but I fear we won’t wake up as a species until something truly calamitous happens to us…

    Always good to have you stop by!

    – Jack

  5. Beautiful image, Jack! I NEVER tire of seeing aspens…any time of year. We still have some beautiful old groves in the mountains bordering our valley, though for how long I wonder. Over a decade ago, I started recording favorite spots along a short stretch of the 15 mile long trail that runs from Provo Canyon to Utah Lake. Last month, I put it on a public Google Map: Provo River Parkway Photo Ops: Geneva Road to Utah Lake State Park, http://bit.ly/agIOBB. I mention this because, like your experience, development has changed the landscape so much around here that every few months I have to delete or alter photo op sites that used to be beautiful and natural despite the nearly 600,000 population in this valley. Now, for certain locations, I suggest shooting only during summer so the leaves will block the new houses or busy street. Or, squat behind a particular bush so roofs are hidden, etc. Development happens, I know, but at what expense?

  6. Hi, Julie –

    I know what you mean – on a recent outing, I simply could not find any composition that didn’t reveal numerous houses – in a state park area. I’d love to live in a beautiful area like that, I just don’t want anyone else to! :^D

    Thanks for visiting!

    – Jack

  7. I have always loved scenes like this and always had the desire to go photograph them somewhere. The white lines just create such a rhythmical pattern with the colors. Very nice Jack.

  8. Hey, Mark –

    I’m always on the lookout for a nice aspen grove, but I really haven’t had much luck finding just what I’m looking for – you know, the now-stereotypical grove of large trees with enough space between them to give some sense of depth, and without so many little branches filling up the space. I don’t know if I’m just looking in the wrong spots or if we really don’t have that many large aspens around WI… Probably the former.

    I did like this grove, though, and always looked forward to visiting it on my trips north.

    Thanks for stopping by!

    – Jack

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