Badlands, Black Hills, Devil's Tower, ghost towns, and tourist traps.
My quest to visit every town in Nebraska ended this afternoon a stop in the nearly non-existent bump-in-the-road known once-upon-a-time as Cumminsville. Located at the intersection of US 281 and NE 70, Cumminsville is little more than an abandoned building and some random relics of times gone by. Ten years of meandering and my map is now complete.
What's next? I'm not exactly sure, but I definitely don't feel like my travels of Nebraska are anywhere near over. This state is my muse, photographically-speaking, and I can't imagine an end to my explorations. Things change, buildings disappear, years pass. Going back to revisit my discoveries years later is part of the magic.
On that note... In 2007, I photographed a building in Spalding that had OUR PLACE lettered across the facade. Today, I returned to Spalding for the first time in many years, and the location of OUR PLACE is now an empty hole in the middle of the other downtown structures. Another reminder that nothing is forever.
So it goes.
From Cozad to Valentine, across the lonely expanse that is the sandhills...
This weekend finds me headed to the last few places in Nebraska that I've yet to visit. Tomorrow, I'll return to Valentine once again. Today, the afternoon was spent chasing and admiring Sandhill Cranes in the Platte River valley.
I witnessed the cranes once on a family trip many years ago, but had not been back to see the migration since I started photographing Nebraska. This always surprises people. I did my best to get some interesting photographs with my limited gear, and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. It's an amazing site to see thousands upon thousands of these elegant birds flying through the sky and coming to rest on the Platte River at night.
A few photographs from a one-day trek across north-central Iowa to see places I'd never seen before...
Places visited: Cedar Falls, New Hartford, Parkersburg, Aplington, Austinville, Ackley, Iowa Falls, Alden, Popejoy, Dows, Rowan, Alexander, Meservey, Thornton, Swaledale, Clear Lake, Garner, Duncan, Britt, Hutchins, Wesley, Algona, Whittemore, West Bend, Rodman, Cylinder, Emmetsburg, Mallard, Havelock, Pocahontas, Pomeroy, and Rockwell City, Iowa.