Monday, March 12, 2012

The Old House and the Blue Lake

Apologies in advance, because this is probably going to be a pretty lengthy post.  For my independent nature photo assignment, I decided to go back to a spot I visited last year.  It's a small chunk of land owned by my grandparents neighbors.  If you want to check it out on Google maps, the co-ordinates are 40.368397,-80.181672.  On satellite view, on the left of the screen you'll see the abandoned house and barn and to the right, a lovely polluted lake.  This photo from google looks like it was taken early last summer, the way I remember the place.  Sadly, some things have changed since then.  The subjects of the first photos here don't necessarily qualify as nature. At the same time though, they show a house, being abandoned and taken back by nature.  

 Again, to start off, here are a few photos from my project that I did here last year.  It was for my black and white photo class and it's probably my favorite project.  These few were taken digitally, the film ones are best though. (Click to check them out full size please!)
When I first went to this house, some kids had been there and had spray painted some stuff, but for the most part, the place seemed relatively untouched.  It's like it's original owners just up and left.  

Sadly, this time, it looks like someone has looted the house.  All of the old appliances are gone and someone has cut the wiring from the house.  On top of that, the second floor of the house is no longer accessible as the stairs were far to mushy for me to risk going up them.  Here's a few shots from inside the house now. 

Outside the house, there are numerous barns and sheds.  Here's a few shots from those:

Now, the part I was aiming for to take my "nature" photos as was this little blue lake.  I believe old mining has left something (sulfur?) to seep into the little creek and pond.  The creek that feeds into the stream is bright orange.  I guess sulfur because it smells like eggs!  Anyway, the pond it leads into is this peaceful, eerie blue, surrounded by woods.  Or should I say was.  
Side by side, these are photos I took.  One was taken last June, the latter, on Saturday.

This isn't the same angle or anything, but it's taken of and from the same area.  The far side of the pond isn't empty because the trees have no leaves, it's empty because the trees are gone.  The housing plan that was built on the other side apparently hadn't cut down enough woods, so they cleared this all out, bulldozed it, and put down gravel.  It's looking like a nice site for some new houses.  The last time I was here, a family of beavers was living in it.  They're still around, but probably not for long of the contractors have their way.  It's sad to see such a peaceful little place destroyed to make way for a row of cookie cutter houses.  I never really counted myself as the "tree hugger" type, but this really bothers me.  It doesn't even bother me that old mining is polluting the creek.  I think it's awful that that we are destroying these last little pockets of beauty that are tucked around in PA.  The above photo is of the original dam that feeds from the pond.  The rest of these photos are just from the rest of the trip.  It's sad to see such a pretty little place destroyed.  

This photo isn't great, but these little guys were growing straight up out of the dam!

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