Presidential Sunset

Sunset views of the Presidential Range from Mount Martha, in New Hampshire.

On the night before the spring equinox I hiked with a dear friend to the top of Mount Martha in the northern White Mountains of New Hampshire.  We aimed for sunset, knowing that Martha has a spectacular view of the Presidential Range to the east.

The snow conditions were excellent, after a week of warm weather had consolidated the snow and a day’s cold weather had firmed the packed trail into a solid base that was perfect for micro spikes.  I pushed up the trail hard and fast, carrying a heavy pack with photography equipment, spare clothing, and a warm dinner, with a wary eye to the sun setting behind me as I neared the ridgeline.  I arrived at the summit 15 minutes before sunset and was pleased to see the Presies still fully illuminated, with the nearly-full moon rising above them.  The wind was dead calm, and the temperature a moderate 15 degrees.  As the sun’s orange globe glowed orange through the trees behind me, I quickly set up my tripod and started snapping photos of the Presies.

2019-03-19-65317We reveled in the beauty of the moment, as the sun set in the west while the white-capped Presidential peaks turned pink and the sky above blended into a gradient from purple to blue.  After about forty minutes we reluctantly turned and headed back down the trail, with the rising full moon so brightly illuminating the forest floor that we never needed headlamps.  A magical evening in an amazing place!  I’ve posted my favorite photos in this gallery.

Snowy farm fields

Black & White photographs of a quiet, snowy morning in Lyme.

This morning I was skiing through a quiet morning snowfall across pristine farm fields in Lyme, New Hampshire, and came across this scene of an antique farm instrument under an apple tree.  Although I had only my iPhone, I thought it might look good in black & white.  I haven’t done black & white photography since my earliest camera – which could only take rolls of black & white film!  So I fiddled a little in Adobe Lightroom and think the result is not too shabby.

An old farm instrument on a farm in Lyme, on a snowy day.An old farm instrument on a farm in Lyme, on a snowy day.

Cancun, Mexico

A short visit to a beach resort in Cancun allowed us time to explore the Mayan ruins of Tulum and Chichen Itzá.

Beach resorts are not really my style, so I was surprised to find myself disembarking among the crowds of beach-worshipping American snowbirds in the airport near Cancun, Mexico.  Cancun’s barrier island is a thin strip of land on the eastern shore of the Yucatan Peninsula, with wall-to-wall mega-hotels lining a pretty beach and crystal-blue waters.  Still, the 80-degree weather was a nice respite from the cold and snow of New England, if only for three days.  And a nice opportunity for photography and touring historic sites.Sunrise on the beach in Cancun.

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Hong Kong

A brief stop in Hong Kong to visit the Chinese University of Hong Kong and to hike above the city at Lions Head.

View of Hong Kong from the top of Lion's Rock.

When I was invited to visit a colleague at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), to present a lecture about my research, I jumped at the chance.  I have visited Hong Kong once before, briefly, almost 20 years ago(!).  So on this two-and-a-half day visit I was pleased to experience a bit more of this lovely city, listed as #44 on the New York Times’ list of 52 Places to Go in 2019.  Read on, and check out the photo gallery. Continue reading “Hong Kong”

Hampi, India

An exploration of the ruins of historic Vijayanagara civilization, once one of the largest and richest cities in the world.

On my very first visit to India in 2007 I learned about an amazing historic site called Hampi.  Although we lived in Bangalore for much of the following year, and Hampi is in the same state, we never managed to find the time for a visit.  (Even today, with a new four-lane highway almost completed, it is a 6-8 hour drive from Bangalore to Hampi.)  So I’ve kept it on my mental to-do list.  And now, it seems, the New York Times has listed it as #2 on its list of “52 places to go in 2019”.

Last week I was in Bangalore to speak at a conference, and next week I need to be in Hong Kong to visit a university, so I had this weekend free.  I finally had my chance to visit Hampi!   I spent two and a half days exploring this incredible place.  Read on, and check out the photo gallery.2019-01-12-62808.jpg Continue reading “Hampi, India”

Back to Bangalore

A return to Bangalore and my discovery of what has changed over four years.

Brigade Road - always a bustling place in the evening.Every time I return to Bangalore it feels a little like returning home.  My family and I lived at IISc in Bangalore for a year, back in 2008-09, and I came to think of its streets and sounds and smells as my home.  I had the good fortune to return every January for six years (2010 through 2015), but hadn’t been back for four years.  Although my visit was short – not quite three days – it was fun to walk the streets of the city and the paths of the campus and see what’s new.  Read on. Continue reading “Back to Bangalore”

Moosilauke in early winter

A gorgeous sunny day on Moosilauke, with an undercast across Vermont and southern New Hampshire. Deep snow, temps in 20s, no wind – amazing day!

I’d heard that the mountains were in “full winter conditions” already.  I finally had a chance to check it out today.  What I found was astonishing – deep powder snow like mid-winter, but in November!   (Ok, today is December 1st, but it’s also November 31st, and I’m gonna go with that.) Be sure to check out the photos, and read on for more!2018-12-01-61563.jpg Continue reading “Moosilauke in early winter”