Acadia Mountain Trail no. 2 – Flying Mountain Showing Its Namesake
The weather played a major role in shaping my photographs from Acadia this time around. For the first five days I was on the island, the conditions were overcast with fog and occasional showers. I know it sounds like the worst conditions for landscape, but I found that it was the opposite. The clouds diffused the sun light, making for soft light on the forest floor. In places where I would have normally had harsh dark shadows and blown out highlights, I had nice even lighting to pickup the subtleties normally lost on a sunny day. Not to mention, we could hike all day and not overheat because it stayed fairly cool during the day. Moving up in elevation away from the forest floor yielded some wild lighting conditions and photo opportunities. While climbing certain mountains, visibility was low because of the low clouds. This meant we did not have the normal panoramic views of the island in the distance. However, it caused you to focus on your immediate surroundings. I photographed colorful plants and flowers that grow in between the boulders and rocks. I also observed mist collecting in the needles of conifer trees, which quickly condensed and formed mini rain showers within the tree. This same effect happened to me, except my arm hairs collected the moisture simulating air conditioning. I know that sounds gross, but it is heaven if you just climbed up a mountain and want to cool off fast. As the wind pushed the clouds around, sometimes I was lucky enough to see the fog clear on certain areas of the park. I would never have captured the above photograph of Flying Mountain literally floating above the clouds if it had been a bright sunny day. Seeing flying mountain above the clouds is also extremely unusual given that its summit is only at 284 feet. It is by no means the Mount Everest of Acadia National Park, but I feel that is important to give the mountain it’s place in the sun regardless of height.