More Winter Wanderings


… And Lessons In Traction Control

In my last post I wrote about some winter photography challenges here in Colorado’s San Juan Mountains. We’ve been getting a good bit of snow this year and it has been just beautiful to look at. The morning after a good snow a few days ago, I decided to go out. It continued to snow lightly off and on, and I planned to stick to the county roads near home. The snow was clinging to branches and limbs, and it looked so pretty. I carefully pulled up along the snow plow pile on the side to look at a stream situated down an embankment. The road below the edge had a downward lip (invisible because of the snow) and my Forester slid down a bit into the 2 foot high, snow plow pile. (It sucked me in!) I tried to get out but with wheels spinning, not too hard. I took my ice scraper and began to dig the snow away from the front tire and called my husband for help. A man stopped and offered to push on the side when I tried to drive out. It slid in deeper! Brent came with shovels and we dug all around. When he tried to drive it out it ended up sliding in even deeper! Suddenly a nice man appeared in an F250! Like a knight in shining armor he easily pulled the car out from the rear using a strap hooked to his hitch and my frame. After that, I wondered if I should just call it quits for the day but decided … NOT! I did take a shovel and strap with me though! Later we saw a video that explained my exact situation. They recommended turning ‘traction control’ off if this happens. It is on by default every time the car starts. Lesson learned and still a good day of shooting. The images here are from that and another day of winter wandering.

‘Big & Frosty’  © Denise Bush

‘Rolling Hill In Winter’  © Denise Bush

‘Crooked Shack & Stream’  © Denise Bush

‘Retired Cabin & Tractor’  © Denise Bush

‘Ponderosa Guardian’  © Denise Bush

‘Double RL Tree’  © Denise Bush

‘Cottonwood Favorites’  © Denise Bush

‘Winter Rays’  © Denise Bush

See my previous post for more ‘Winter Wanderings‘!

58 Responses to “More Winter Wanderings”

  1. Beautiful wanderings! I love the b&w of Rolling Hills.

  2. Denise….nice vision and capture while wandering….peace out…jw

  3. love big&frosty and rolling hills!

  4. 7 Linda Kamholz

    These are all beautiful, Denise. I’ll bet you slept well that night! We’ve hardly gotten any snow at all so far. Still waiting for that first big snow storm of the season.

    • So nice to hear from you Linda! I slept well but was a little sore the next day after contorting to dig out with an ice scraper. Hope you get your big pretty snow soon. We got another foot last night. Brent is out there now with the snow blower so I can go sub at school. There was a one hour delay. I have never known them to close school here … this is our 4th winter.

  5. I guess they refer to that as ‘suffering for one’s art,’ eh? Judging by these photos, it is worth it! The first two are my favorites. 🙂

  6. 11 Terry Wilson

    I agree, the first two are my favorites too. We get to see snow on the mountains in the distance, but otherwise it’s year round hummingbird watching here in Ventura. I do miss the snow though.

    You didn’t take a dramatic photo of your stuck car?

    • Hey Terry! I know … I wasn’t thinking a shot of the car would be great for a blog post at the time! Nice to hear from you and your likes. 🙂

  7. Great images, really like “Rolling Hill” and “Double RL Tree”. Glad you managed to get your car back on the road.

  8. Way to keep going. I love the Rolling Hill pic!

  9. A tale of sorrow but great images of the snow.

  10. That is an exciting story. I am glad you got some help out of the situation. Those are lovely snow scenes. Snow covered landscape or buildings are always pretty. Well done!

  11. 21 Chuck Aitken

    All very nice Denise. Glad you made it out of the snow pile. Sounds like it is time to get a 4 wheel drive. All wheel drive will only get you so far.

    • I’m sure I could have gotten out in the first place if I had known to turn traction control off. The video we saw was my exact scenario. The traction control makes the brakes pulsate making it difficult in a snow drift with ice below. We are thinking about a used jeep to get up in the (very) high elevations this summer. Thanks for looking Chuck!

  12. Where’s the Forester shot? 😉 Just kidding. Beautiful captures, Denise, it was worth continuing on after your mishap. 🙂

  13. Amazing collection Denise.

  14. Glad you came out safe. I like Big & Frosty because of the fence base. Rolling Hill is great, in part because of the shadows on the drifts. And Crooked Shade is sliding down because they had left Traction Control on.

  15. A decidedly rough start to your adventure, but it paid off. As usual you have some real stunners hear, especially the first two. I did not know that about the traction control. Thanks for the lesson!

    • Traction control is good on a wet highway but if you are spinning on ice or in a drift turning off traction control is the thing to do! Thanks for looking and letting me know your likes!

  16. As much as we like to say we’re glad we’re not shoveling snow anymore, these photos easily make me long for the beauty that only deep snow has. The part about you continuing on made me laugh, it really did. BUT with the strap and shovel. 🙂 Glad you got an explanation from the video. The photos are gorgeous – I like the variety here. Double RL is my favorite – is it named for the location, i.e. the ranch it’s on? I love the crooked shack and rolling hill, too. But they’re all terrific. Safe travels and happy wandering!

    • As a matter of fact the RL stands for Ralph Lauren … a Ridgway neighbor! Thanks so much for looking. I’m glad you like those images … others were getting all the likes and they were feeling neglected! I like those too!

      • 🙂 that’s funny about RL. I could see the Double RL Tree as a really huge print. It’s interesting the way there are three horizontal bands behind the branches – that pale gray in the snow, those dense bushes and the horizon. I like the way those horizontals play with the tree branches. OK, safe travels again. 🙂

  17. Soo very beautiful! I adore ‘Big & Frosty’! Whew glad to read you were safely pulled out of the snow bank and even kept on your adventure! I love your spirit. Thank goodness for helping hands too

  18. Stunning images, Denise. I’m glad you did not let the car problem deter you. It was worth the troubles you had.

  19. Wow, what a (cold) adventure, and nice photos!

    • It was cold but not the kind of cold that settles in your bones because The air is so dry here. The hardest thing is keeping your hands warm while operating the camera. Thanks for the visit and comment! 🙂

  20. What delicate white details you caught in the branches in the first photo.

  21. You’re not only a talented photographer but a talented writer as well. My favorite in your latest blog is the “Rolling Hill in Winter” but all are beautiful. You’re a good scout…finding so many interesting subjects!

    • Thanks Natalie! Now you know the full saga of my (latest) getting stuck story. Writing on the computer makes it easy to make edits and reword the story … I do a lot of that before I push the publish button.

  22. I would say even with the challenges you encountered…it was good that you pursued your original agenda…incredible photography!! Love all of these shots!

    • Thanks very much Kirt! I feel lazy about going out at times but once I’m out, I go for it!

      • Love it…I did a photo shoot a few years ago of old barns in Iowa…almost had your experience but with mud…got some great shots down roads I really shouldn’t have been on in the rainy season….😀

  23. Another series of beautiful winter images. Every time we drive during winter, we learn something new, don’t we… 🙂

  24. Hi Denise, Your series is stunning– Rolling Hill, Crooked Shack and Double RL Tree are standouts– honestly, they are all fantastic. I am glad you were rescued! I grew up in the NE and I miss the beauty of snow but I don’t miss having to get around in it. Excellent perseverance to get the shots. 🙂

  25. I love the wonky little shack next to the creek. (Although I mostly hate snow LOL)

    • I’m glad you like that one Ruth … it didn’t receive many comments from others. We got a foot of snow last weekend and I see there is more in the forecast. Colorado wouldn’t be the place for you!

  26. I can’t believe you continued your photographing excursion after this, but what a lot of stunning images you managed to capture! My favorite is the silhouette of trees and fence in “Rolling Hill in Winter” which in my mind I’ve taken to calling “Marching Serenity.”

  27. It’s gorgeous! I really like that giant Ponderosa next to the cabin. The scale is amazing.

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