My lone blog post last month made me realize how many Instagram pics I've got (@stephparke). Hundreds. And it also made me realize that posting a quick collage of photos here in this space is better than no post at all. So, here I am with a July recap. It was a busy month again (story of all our lives, right?). I did some traveling, some cooking/baking, some garden-picking, some fireworks-watching, and some cabin-relaxing.
The collage above contains favorite Instagram pics from home. Things like a cabin cleanup day - we were cleaning out brush and dead branches to create a defensive space in light of all the fires this summer; hanging tiny 3" square Instagram prints from Kanvess.com; having a s'mores competition with friends (I won with my creation of a graham cracker, Nutella, vanilla ice cream, and eggless chocolate chip cookie dough.); hanging out at my dad's on a rainy Saturday, picking produce and playing with the kids; smoking up the neighborhood with my husband's brother's kids with smoke bombs, ground flowers, and cones; and enjoying a scoop of my favorite chocolate peanut butter ice cream at Farr's in Ogden, Utah. In all, it was a great month.
The collage above contains field day finds. I visited the Caribou, Uinta-Wasatch-Cache, Sawtooth, and Targhee National Forests, and saw so many beautiful places. My favorite place all summer has been the Sawtooth. I spent just two days on this forest, but it was wonderful. The first day started with rain and ended with a patchwork sky of blue and clouds. It was a tough day to shoot campgrounds - everything was soggy and lakes were gray and choppy, but I loved it nonetheless. I finished up my work for the day, checked into my hotel in Stanley, Idaho, and got back in the car for a drive up Yankee Fork. It's an amazing place full of history and scenic beauty, and I was so happy to be able to spend some leisure time there. I visited Yankee Fork a few years ago but was on a tight schedule and was in and out in 45 minutes. This time though, I stayed for about three hours - and it still wasn't enough.
The next morning, my alarm buzzed at 6:30. I wanted to get on the road quickly so I could spend time at Redfish Lake and in Ketchum before making the four-hour drive home. I showered, repacked my stuff, gathered my collection of new Polaroids I'd spread out on the table the night before, and opened the curtains. To my surprise, I couldn't see across the parking lot. It was July 17 and I was in pea-soup fog. I was shocked. Out loud, I said, "you're kidding me!" I closed the curtains, sat down on the bed for a split second, got up, opened the curtains, and stared. Change of plans.
I checked out of my room and made a beeline (at 30 mph in dense fog) for Redfish Lake Road four miles south of town. I slowly made my way to the lake, stopping at Redfish Lake Creek first. After a few minutes at the creek, the fog started to lift and pockets of blue appeared. I moved up the road to the North Shore area of the lake, and found the fog to be even more dense. I carried four cameras to the shore and proceeded to shoot through more film than I've used all summer. I was in heaven. I heard a duck quacking somewhere in the distance but never saw it. Campgrounds surrounded me, but the fog put a hush on the whole area. I didn't see or hear people for over an hour.
I headed toward Redfish Lake Lodge in hopes of kayaks on the water, and found exactly what I'd hoped for. Look at all those boats up there! I wandered the docks for about 45 minutes, shooting Polaroid after Polaroid, 35mm frame after 35mm frame. I can't wait to get my film developed! I've got four rolls to send to Photoworks SF. Exciting! I shot all that I could, then drove back to Stanley for breakfast at Stanley Baking Company, a wonderful little shop with great offerings. I enjoyed my breakfast burrito and hazelnut steamer over spotty internet service and friendly conversation from the tables surrounding me, and an hour later, the fog had lifted. I drove back to the lake, photographed my campgrounds, and stood knee-deep in chilly Redfish Lake, then headed home. I got in only an hour later than I thought I would, and I experienced something special at Redfish Lake. From the reactions of the locals, apparently fog is not too common in the summer, and I'm happy it graced me with its presence. July was good to me. Let's hope August is too.