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October 25th, 2008 Brokenstraw Creek and Miles Run
 
 
After a night of hard rain I knew that there would be some water in the creeks and I was not disappointed. Shortly after lunch the rain stopped and I ventured out. My first stop was in Columbus, PA. Around a hundred years or so ago there was a small dam here that created a lake. That dam has long since faded away and Brokenstraw once again flows freely. All that is left is some large concrete rubble and a rusty old ladder. I had to look around to try and find a good angle. You can't tell from the picture but this lies smack in the middle of a small town. Since this was the only angle to be had I fired off one frame here for two minutes on IR film with a Holga and moved on. I could have taken 2-3 more but I am quite happy with this one. I consider it a portfolio piece for my Brokenstraw Creek Project.

From here I moved on down Route 6 to Miles Run Road. The people that name the roads are quite clever and Miles Run runs alongside of (you guessed it) Miles Run. Miles Run is a tiny little tributary of Little Brokenstraw Creek that eventually flows into the main branch of Brokenstraw Creek. A lot of times Miles Run is only a small trickle but with the heavy rains it had a good flow. With Autumn winding down there were still a few leaves hanging on but most of them were now on the ground. I parked along the road next to the state game lands and walked the short hop next to the creek. The only way to photograph this creek is to wade in. The water was bone chillingly cold. The storm that had past over the night before had stopped it rains but left me with very heavy cloud cover. I shot 6 frames here at 2 minutes with the Efke IR film in a Holga but should have gone for 4. The negatives were a bit thin but still very workable. Two of the 6 were rather nice and worth working on. When all is said and done I am pretty sure that the one on the right will be included in the final portfolio, as I love the way the freshly fallen leaves look in IR.

After about 30 minutes or so my feet were numb and it was time to warm up in the car. I drove down Miles Run Road to Route 6 again and headed on down to the town of Pittsfield. In Pittsfield Little Brokenstraw Creek flows into the main branch of Brokenstraw. I turned up Route 27 with the goal to explore some pull offs. The first stop I went to was unfortunately posted. So back in the car I went. Just beyond the town of Garland where Route 27 turns into Route 426 I found a pull off that had public creek access. While I hate it when property owners post their land as no trespassing, I certainly understand. Every public access point along the creek seems to be full of broken beer bottles, old plastic worm cups, and all sorts of other trash. I have even seen the remnants of an old make shift Meth Lab. Anyway I got out of the car walked down a steep hill, crossed the rail road tracks, and walked the bank again. The water here was quite a bit warmer than the water in Miles Run but it was still pretty chilly. I guess I should expect that around here in late October but it is still a major drag. Before too long I will have to break out the waders and not to long after that the creeks will be covered with ice.

The creek side here is very wooded on the side with the steep hill but on the other side it is farm fields. I began to notice that the nice light was going to quickly pass as the clouds were breaking up so I quickly planned the remaining 5 shots on my roll of IR film. There was a nice cottonwood tree leaning over the water that looked pretty interesting, which drew the most attention. I had also hoped to frame a shot with the creek in the foreground and the tall corn in the background but I just could not find a view I liked, with light that worked.

After I had finished up my roll I hiked back to the car and headed home. It was a fun way to spend a Saturday afternoon.
 






 
 

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