About Me

My photo
We are known as PaWingers or just The Wingers by our Geocaching friends. When we found our first cache we had to come up with a name to log the find. We came up with this name simply because of residing in Pa. and because one of our many passions is cruising this beautiful country on our Honda Goldwing. Aside from geocaching we are passionate about most anything outdoors including hiking, kayaking, snowmobiling and biking. We are blessed beyond words with a wonderful son and daughter in law. We're also blessed with some terriffic family and friends. We consider ourselves very fortunate due to the fact that after being married over 40 years we still enjoy these things together.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Gliding Silently Through The Water

Paddling has become somewhat of a passion.  Whether it's racing down through a section of rapids or gliding silently through a quiet river, there's nothing quite like it.  Our lakes, rivers and lagoons are loaded with Gods creatures and paddling gets you up close and personal with them.  What's not to like about paddling.

           We spotted a few Green Herons as we paddled along the Chadakoin River.

                                        Is that the picture of contentment or what!

 We spent a great day paddling the Chadakoin River with the Russ and Debbie.

              This bass actually jumped into my kayak as I paddled through some lily pads.

                                      Another beautiful Green Heron.

                         We paddled quite close to the Blue heron.

We see tons of turtles as we paddle silently through the water.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

We must eat to grow large and mighty!

It is said that the antlers on an elk can grow as much as 1 to 1-1/2 inches per day.  Bulls in the velvet stage are absolutely beautiful. 

Covered Bridges of Ashtabula County

Typically when one mentions Ohio, people automatically picture themselves cruising across I-80 enroute to Cleveland, Cedar Point, Sea World or some other popular tourist trap.  Little do they realize that tucked away in the far North Eastern corner of the state is a hidden treasure called Ashtabula County.  While Ashtabula County may not be the typical destination for travelers, perhaps it deserves another look if you are a lover of covered bridges.  Ashtabula County is the home of at least 17 beautiful covered bridges each unique and different from each other.  If one is so inclined to explore these beautiful bridges it is easy to look online and find the coordinates to each of them.  You will not be dissapointed and after visiting one you will find yourself anxious to check out the next, and the next, until you've seen them all.  We recently spent a full day exploring all of these bridges and we're sure glad we did.

    This is an arch truss construction and the mere size of these curved beams was amazing.

The Smolen Gulf Covered bridge is shown in the above pictures.  This bridge certainly lacks the charm of an old historic structure but while lacking in charm it more than makes up for that in its size and construction.  This particular bridge is 613 feet long and it is made entirely of wood with the exception of the metal roof and concrete piers.  The entire under structure is made of Douglas Fir and Yellow Pine with the main beams being 3 foot wide.  This bridge sits 93 feet above the Ashtabula River and will support two lanes of legal weight traffic.  There are covered passenger walkways on both sides of the bridge and seperated from traffic.  What an awesome bridge!!!

There are 17 Covered Bridges in Ashtabula County but we didn't want to spoil the surprises by showing all of them.  This was an awesome old bridge and we were treated to the sound of clipety clop as an Amish buggy traveled thru.

Aside from the covered bridges, Ashtabula County is home to many Amish farms.  We stopped and asked these giggly young ladies if it would be okay to take their pictures.  They smiled and giggled and allowed us to take a quick photo.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

A cold winter day in elk country!

It was a cold but beautiful day on Winslow hill.  The temps were single digits and the ground was covered with a pristine blanket of powdery snow.  What a great day to photograph our resident elk.  We saw lots of elk but no real huge bulls, but who say's cows and calves can't be photogenic.  Besides I was just itching to try out my new 300mm f4 L Canon Lens.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Hot Spot For Train Buffs

Some people collect coins, some are bird watchers, some knit gnomes, some gaze at stars and other watch trains go by.  It's what makes us individuals and makes the world go round.  If trains are what trip your trigger, you need to visit the Overlook at Cassandra Pa.  We aren't train fanatics by any stretch of the imagination but we have to admit we were intrigued by our visit to this place.  There were many people there that had a real passion for railroading.  They were equipped with radios so they could monitor the transmissions from the Engineers and Conductors on the trains.

Cassandra has 3 sets of tracks and you will be guaranteed to see lots of trains, sometimes a couple at a time.  Trains coming from the one direction are straining to pull their load up a pretty decent grade.  The power of these engines will vibrate your innards as they pass underneath you.  Those with the radios were chatting among themselves as to how many engines and how many cars and their destinations.  It was easy to get caught up in all the excitement.  So if trains are your thing or if you know of a child that loves trains, do yourself a favor and head to Cassandra.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Beautiful Winter Hike

We decided to hike back into a out of the way area of Porcupine today with the hopes of running into a herd of elk.  There were none to be found up on Winslow Hill so we thought they might be bedded down back in where they could get some privacy.  Perhaps they were but it sure wasn't where we hiked to.  So we saw no elk but it was a beautiful day to be out hiking.  The sky was brilliant blue and the sun felt so warm even though the temperature was only in the mid 20's. 

Monday, January 10, 2011

Mama and Baby Coon

 This little guy was born only a few days before this picture was taken.  There were more babies but Mama didn't like all the attention and moved them to a new spot.  This shot was taken when Momma was moving the babies.  She was very protective.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Great Allegheny Passage Trail

If you ever get the opportunity grab your bike and a couple friends and do some miles on the Allegheny Passage Trail.  You will be amazed as you round each corner.  What lies around the next bend could be a tunnel, a line of windmills, a viaduct or any of a number of things that tease your senses.  The sights and smells are out of this world.  You could find yourself trying to out pedal and old steam powered train approaching you from behind.  In Frostburg Md. you may get lucky and see that old engine reversing directions on a very functional turntable. You'll see several natural geographic wonders such as pedaling up to the Continental Divide and as you approach Cumberland you'll witness the beauty of the Narrows.  You just need to experience all of this trail, you won't be sorry.

The Big Savage Tunnel is over 3/4 mile long but is one of the only tunnels between Pittsburgh and Washington DC that are illuminated.  It had large doors that are closed during the winter to protect it from winter damage.  With the exception of this tunnel you will need a good headlight to navigate the other tunnels.

This is the Salisbury Viaduct by Meyersdale.  It's nearly 2000 feet long and stands high above Rte 219 and the Casselman River.  The wind gusts along with the traffic zooming below can make this a rather unnerving pedal for the faint of heart.  As you pedal away from Meyersdale you can't help but admire the many wind turbines lining the far ridge.

This is one of many railroad bridges with boardwalk approaches and benches.

Did I mention the old passenger steam engine?  This train runs daily between Cumberland and Frostburg Md.  If you don't think  you can make the 32 mile round trip that's not a problem because you can catch the train at either end and you and your bike can sit back and enjoy the return trip on the train.

This is the turntable at Frostburg.  It's just awesome to watch this work and it sure draws a crowd.

We enjoyed a beautiful 50 mile ride that day.

Bull #36....The Benezette Bull named Fred....

This picture was taken back in 2004 with a little Point and Shoot.  Fred's taking a little rest and watching the cars go by.

He woke up and got a bite to eat.

Fred didn't want to miss the 11:30 morning service so he slept right there.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Kayaking Bennetts Branch in March

Bennetts Branch is a hidden jewel for kayaking.  You have to get on it when the water is up because it drops quickly.  If you paddle it when the conditions are right you are in for a treat.

Black Hills, Mount Rushmore and Devil's Tower

Mount Rushmore was awe inspiring!

The detail is absolutely amazing!

One of the many beautiful views.

Devils Tower

Prairie dogs are very photogenic.

This little guy seems to be praying that he makes it across the road.

Gathering the sweet nectar.

It's an endless job gathering pollen.

Our old buddy "Crazy Legs Jr"

This unusual bull was known as Crazy Legs Jr.  His Papa was Also Crazy Legs and got his name because he was a real traveler and could be seen at different locations several miles apart in a short time.  Crazy Legs Jr sadly is no longer around as he fell victim to a hunter and I use that term loosely.  Must have been real sporting to harvest this big guy.