Thursday, October 7, 2021
I am on a photography workshop with Mark Zablotsky (https://www.markzphotoworkshops.com) touring some of the prettiest places in West Virginia. We were scheduled to take the Durbin Rocket Train ride at 10:00. That gave us just enough time for a shoot of Blackwater Falls from below. It is a beautiful waterfall. It’s fun to look over Mark’s shoulder as he composes, adjusts his exposure, positions himself, shoots and then to see the final result in the camera. It’s also fun to have him look at my pictures and point out what I might have changed. Why did I choose that F-stop. Why that speed? Could you have composed differently to save time in processing?
We arrived at the train station 30 minutes early, as planned and discussed settings for this moving environment. We could have taken the Cass Train ride, which is a 4-hour trip, but opted to try the Durbin, which is only two hours following the Greenbrier River. A vintage steam engine pulled four cars along the river. It picked up two caboose cars that were left on the tracks. A nice family had stayed there for two nights and said it was very comfortable, with plenty of room, and they really enjoyed it. The train also stopped briefly to load water for steam from a tributary stream.
Although not peak fall colors, there was plenty of color, interesting houses, farms, barns, apple trees and a beautiful river. the train went backward during the first half and forward on the way back. It was more pleasant on the first half, as the smell of diesel fuel got to us on the return.
Heading down the road, we went to Green Bank Telescope, the world’s largest steerable radio telescope. Then on to Lewisburg. Of course we couldn’t resist shooting some pretty places along the way.
We thought we would shoot Droop Mountain Battlefield Tower at sunset, but it was all fogged in. We checked into the Holiday Inn Express and Suites in Lewisburg, then went to dinner at “Food and Friends” in downtown Lewisburg. It was excellent – great food, great service at a reasonable price, and we sat at a table next to a window so we could watch all the people passing by.