This windmill southwest of the Bismarck-Mandan area doesn’t have much left but a skeleton. It sure is parked in a scenic location, however!
People make such a big deal about the Badlands, but if you haven’t roamed around southern Morton County you may not know that we have landscapes every bit as beautiful right in our midst. Those colorful hills and dramatic, eroded bluffs abound right in our own backyard.
I haven’t been able to get out with my personal cameras for fun in quite a while, but I do still have plenty of photos to post. It’s just a matter of combing through them, another activity for which I have little time to do. But here we are.
Given my affinity for windmills, I figured this might be a good place to start.
It was a nice, sunny morning. I was roaming the county roads, checking out spots I’d marked in my GPS long, long ago. There were some targets of opportunity I’d marked but never had the chance to actually photograph. This was one of them: a windmill which has seen better days, yet is still standing tall.
I always find little extra bonus items on these roaming trips, and today was no exception. It’s amazing how sometimes I can spot something that I swear I must have driven past at least a handful of times, but which has obviously been there all along. That was the case with this windmill.
The moon wanted to get into the picture. I wish the angle would have been better to break out the telephoto and cheat the perspective to make the moon appear larger in this shot, but I just didn’t have physics on my side that day.
I love to roam. As things start changing for Autumn, I’m now faced with a primal urge to get out and chase stuff with my camera, investigate things I’ve mapped for future photo jaunts, and make the best of the time before the trees become barren and the landscape a dull gray. Winter has its own opportunities, but September is my favorite. Hopefully, although my schedule is absolutely stacked, I can make the most of it.
I first noticed this windmill along, long time ago. I’ve never gotten a close look at it, though, because there have always been cattle on the land where it sits. Among the rules I have for my photo hobby are tenets like obeyance of No Trespassing signs, not entering old structures (out of safety and respect), and avoidance of disturbing livestock at all costs. So I’d always just continue on down the road.
This particular windmill is being encroached upon from all sides as new neighborhoods continue to be developed in every direction. They’re awfully close at this point, which leads me to believe that at some point this windmill will disappear just as some of my other favorites have. Thankfully, after an evening of playing with the kiddos (and every water snake and frog they could catch and collect) at the lake nearby, I was able to get a closer look without causing a disruption.
Even now, this is pretty much the only angle available, unless one wants a highway or someone else’s backyard. It was sufficient. I got a little bit of a sunset, although I had to push the colors a bit. Those darn horizon clouds always snatch the sunset away early! As you can see, the head of this windmill has seen far better days. Regardless of its physical condition, however, I think it’s inevitable that it’ll be gone in the not-so-distant future. Unless the cows or their owner say otherwise.
After seeing so many of my counterparts out roaming and getting great cloud and storm shots, I finally decided to defy Dave Ramsey and blow some gas money with my boy. We took our cameras out for a couple of hours and had a great time! This is how our evening started, and it only got better from there. More to come…
Shoegazing is a style of music from my beloved 1980s, basically because the artists would stare downward with appropriate angst while belting out their melodies on stage. I could not ascertain what this windmill was focused on, but I doubt it had anything to do with Slowdive or My Bloody Valentine.
There are actually a few decrepit windmills in Bluegrass, ND, but the remnants of the little town are encroached upon by subsidy-sucking wind turbines on all sides. I stopped to grab a quick old-vs-new shot during my most recent drive past the remains of this ghost town.
This windmill caught my attention while I was out roaming recently, and – unlike many of the windmills I encounter – it was actually near the road so I could quickly get a nice photo of it. It seems these things are vanishing at a quickening pace; even ol’ standbys are falling to the ravages of time and North Dakota weather.
This one actually sits in a yard along with an old farmstead. There are cattle on the land, which is probably why the lawn appears to be mowed. It’s sad to see another casualty of time here, but fascinating nonetheless.
One more windmill in the casualty category. This one actually isn’t too far from my property. I took off a little early on Friday and roamed for an hour or so before finding this shot. I’d played around in the river bottoms a bit, but didn’t find the inspiration I was looking for. Thankfully I came upon this shot, although it’s too bad that the windmill is so badly damaged.
Yesterday’s storms missed my family’s abode, but they did cause plenty of excitement east of Bismarck-Mandan. I took the opportunity to venture out with my boys and my new used truck to see what the clouds were doing. Thankfully they obliged – I caught this shot not far northeast of Bismarck. Wow. I also got some cool video, but I don’t have time to post it just yet. Maybe I’ll update the post later.
This old windmill, weathered as it is, has probably seen quite a few storms roll through. It looks as though it’s probably been battered by them, too. Is there any wonder why I’m so attracted to this feature of the North Dakota prairie?