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And they are off... I spent Sunday at the track with fellow blogger Mark Bernard.  It was a lot of fun and despite the rain a great day for photography.  I almost think the rain and the mud made some of the images even more interesting.  Below is an image of the horses rounding the bend before the home stretch.

In this other image, "Lucky 13" shows the 13 horse leading the pack en route to the finish line.  The race is an amazing way to spend a day and with friends it is even better.

So, what happens to the muddy horses?  They get rinsed off, of course.  This last shot for today's blog is the workers rinsing off one of the horses after the race.


Chowderfest 2012


As a non-seafood person, Chowderfest was the last place I thought I'd be Saturday afternoon. Little did I know how many great chowders there are that don't involve clams!


Lines were long, but chefs around the city seems to make an endless supply of chowder.  Everywhere you turned people were eating and smiling.


Saratoga PD were doing crowd control, but I was there in the early afternoon and things seemed very peaceful and orderly.


The streets (like Caroline) that were blocked off to traffic were packed with Chowder-heads.


Some restaurants like Sperry's had an assembly line going.  And for the record this was my favorite chowder of the day! Yummy!  


Hattie's also had a line that went way down the street.  But this type of line was the norm on Saturday.


There were even a few places to get Desert Chowder.  This is the crew from Bettie's (aka the bright pink cupcake doubledecker bus).


And for those that didn't attend the Chowderfest.  I know a picture is usually worth a thousand words but this one tells you at least three - "you missed out".

A few years ago the bridge between New York and Vermont was closed, then a few months later they blew it up and started to build anew.  The shutting down of the bridge also shut down a large part of the economy in that area.  People had to take a ferry to get back and forth at the Crown Point site.  

Well as everyone saw on the local news channels the bridge is now reopened.  I decided to take a day trip to see the bridge and cross over to Vermont for a beautiful day of photos, good food and good conversation (no, I didn't go by myself).

This view is from the southern side, along the Champlain shore in the Crown Point State campsite.

A little closer view to show off the beautiful design, that mimics the original rather nicely while still appearing modern.

As you cross over from New York to Vermont you will see this breathtaking view.  A lot of people were walking on the bridge during the unseasonably warm Saturday afternoon.

If you look up right as you cross into Vermont you will see the strong cables and cross bars of the arch.  

It really was a great day and a fun trip.  It's only an hour and a half away and on your way back home through Vermont there are plenty of great restaurants and places to shop.  Much like our lovely region.

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The Old Iron Spring located in Ballston Spa has been flowing since the mid-1800's.  Like most of the springs around the Saratoga area, it is said to have healing qualities.  A couple of weeks ago, I was arriving into town late from a day trip to New York City.  Our first snowfall hit the area and fresh snow makes for great photos.   It was late (around 1am) but I wanted to get a few photos of something special before the snow melted.  

This shot is actually a combination of multiple exposures combined into one sometimes referred to HDR (high-dynamic range) photography.  While HDR is sometimes associated with tone mapping, it can be used to effectively in other ways.


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Ask a photographer their favorite time to shoot and 95% will either say sunrise or sunset.  Last week I decided to spend the early morning at Round Lake on Route 9 just south of Malta.  I got there before the sun peaked its head and left over an hour later with the sun well over the horizon. 

Below is one of the first shots of the day.  The sky is what I call cotton candy, or sky blue pink.  The mist is just over the lake and you can still see the frost on the grass in the foreground.  

Around a hundred or more photos later (seriously) the sun decided to pop up over the horizon.   

Sometimes the sun looks like a large fiery orb in the sky.  Oh wait... 

Some geese decided to ruin my shots of the sun and swam in front of me.  I named the one in the lead "Stay Thirsty".  

Since I could tell the geese had no intentions of leaving, I asked them politely to pose for me. The one in the back stuck his neck up high to make sure he got into the shot.  

At this point, the sun was up and the sky was getting blue.  I had to get to work and my hands were numb so this last image is very similar to the first image... in content.  Notice the color changes that occur in an hour?  That is why morning photography is so fun.  If the light isn't quite right, wait a little while and it may be just what you are looking for.

Thank you very much for enduring my first "photo blog" for  If you'd like to see more from this shoot, let me know via the comments on this page.  I hope that you enjoyed looking at the photos as much as I did taking them.  
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Saratoga Snapshots Bloggers

Mark Bernard photographs Saratoga scenes and events and will be adding compelling photos from the area. To see more of Mark's work visit his Website.

JT Gilbert loves to photograph the world around him. From long exposures to HDR, color burns to black and whites, you never know what you are going to get. Website.