Sandhills Morning

Sunday morning promised to be clear and cold. At 6:30 after checking all of my social media outlets, I looked to the lightening sky in the east and decided to brave the cold for a photographic road trip.Sunrise found me parked by the side of Prairie Trace Road about ten miles north of Sutherland. A small cloud bank in the east obscured the sun briefly, but it soon broke through.
Nearer to the Birdwood Creek, the hoarfrost had developed spectacularly on the fences and roadside grasses. Until I stopped and looked closely, I had no idea how beautiful each individual "leaf" of frost was.
It is amazing to me how this beauty can develop overnight.
So beautiful and so delicate. And so easily missed as we speed right on past.
Further north, I reached my original destination, the valley of the Birdwood Creek. The beauty exceeded my expectations, as a heavy mist was rising from the stream and had settled into the valley.
The early morning sun reflecting off of the mist and the newly-fallen snow and sparkling in the hoarfrost coating the grasses made it a magical sight.
I headed back to the valley, then took North River Road to Birdwood Road and back north again, this time on gravel roads. The plows hadn't been through here, but enough traffic had broken through the drifts and packed down the snow that I had no trouble. About five miles north I came to the valley of the Birdwood, this time from a different vantage point.
Along the way I passed temporary corrals used to load out the calves in the fall built in a pasture. The snow had drifted very prettily through the boards.
This winter has almost been the one that wasn't, but I'm glad we got at least one heavy snow fall so we can enjoy all of the seasons.

Thanks for stopping by. The coffee's always on.


  1. I've forwarded a link of your wonderful website to my mother, Nona Cirone, Cape Split, Addison, Maine. You'll be surprised to know she lived in the Birdwood Creek valley in the 1930's. She lived on a ranch in one of the last sod houses. Her parents were Willis and Theda Johnson. Her brother was Donald Johnson. She's written of her early days in Nebraska along with photos. How did she end up in Maine? She married my dad who was USAF at F.E. Warren, Cheyenne, WY; then moved back to his home on the Maine coast! Thanks for your hard work and your website! Todd

  2. Thank you so much for your comment. I would love to read some of your mother's writings about this area. I hope to be more active in the future posting photos of this beautiful area. This summer has been difficult, with the severe drought making even driving around dangerous as even engine heat could ignite the dry grasses when stopped to take a photo.


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