Rockwood Hall State Park

Hudson River from Rockwood St. Park
Hudson River from Rockwood St. Park

Eventually, we parked the car where it said, no parking and trudged up a hill.  (Those tire tracks were there already).  And the first view, with this emptiness and a few trees – Lester was already far away – and I yelled to him, “Ah this is great!”  He’s usually far ahead of me since I walk slowly and stop to look at every little thing.

I know that this image doesn’t capture the feeling I had as I stood atop the hill with the Hudson barely visible off to the left.  But this is what we had been looking for.  Lots of grumbling as we approached it about State Parks, and rules and regulations.  A sign proclaimed that this was the height of cayote season and to be on guard against cayotes.  I asked Les if cayotes were dangerous and he said they weren’t, as a rule.  That you could feed them from your hand.  I think he was mistaking them for dogs in the dog park.

I used to think, since I’m such a solitary person, that I could’ve been a trapper or a mountain man in another life, and instead of coming back with pictures I’d come back into town with furs.   I doubt that since I’m afraid to sleep out in the forest   But I cross streets with cars zooming around and bike messengers going the wrong way and bank robberies and con-men on streets and I’ve survived that.  Would the wilderness be different.  After all, when I was a kid, I had a fake-fur Daniel Boone hat.  I wasn’t born in a mountain house in Tennessee – as the song goes – but I liked the idea.

You just have to be born into it.  Lots of people tell me that they never drive into the city because they’re afraid of getting into an accident.  It’s just what you’re used to – don’t you think.  And this sort of exploration is all new for me.

I think that after a few months I’ll be able to feed cayotes by hand.

When I was in Yosemite, I did go off alone into the woods and come across bears.  I had read what you were supposed to do (don’t remember what that was anymore) but I do remember what I did: back away from them  slowly with my arms over my head, which was supposed to make me look bigger.

The park is called Rockwood Hall Park – but we didn’t find any halls there.

Anyway – we made it to the park that didn’t allow parking – and wandered around.  More later…

Here’s the original before any processing:

The raw ir file before processing.
The raw ir file before processing.
After applying camera calibration infrared profile (DNG Profiler)
After applying camera calibration infrared profile (DNG Profiler)
In Lightroom - CLICK for larger version.
In Lightroom - CLICK for larger version.

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My name is Dave Beckerman. I am a fine art photographer working in New York City.

6 thoughts on “Rockwood Hall State Park”

  1. I don’t know. I can’t picture Dave as a mountain man, unless the mountain is Mt. Sinai.

    When were counselors at this camp up in NY State, every few weeks we had to take the kids on overnight sleepouts in the woods. The woods weren’t very far from the bunks, maybe a quarter of a mile away, but being responsible for 15 seven year olds in the dark was a cause for anxiety.

    Anyway, Dave disappeared into the woods with his troop on his designated night, but reappeared a few hours later, with every one of the seven year olds clinging to his legs and trembling with fear. The head counselor asked what happened and Dave explained.

    It seemed that one of the kids heard a rattle noise in the woods. Then Dave proceeded to explain that it was probably only a rattlesnake and that rattlesnakes don’t bite unless you bother them. That’s when the kids started crying and asking to go home to their mommies. So Dave took them back to their bunks.

    And as far as coyotes go, when I was in Arizona they seemed very friendly. Of course, I have only four fingers now.

  2. There’s a really lovely balance in tonality between the sky and the foreground in this shot. Did you need to fudge that or what that there in the original cloud formations? I really like the write-ups for your trips.

  3. Yes. The whole thing is “fudged.” There are about six lightroom graduated filters; some overlayed on each other in the print. It’s also nice in b&w. Don’t know if I’ll offer the toned one or the b&w one.

    I suppose one day I’ll post the shot straight from the camera. Maybe tomorrow. I think you’d be shocked at what the original raw version looks like before it’s corrected. Remember – this is all infrared stuff – so it starts off as almost pure red. You know what – I’ll post it now…

  4. I’m really enjoying these descriptions of your trips Dave. What I really like about this post though, is the screenshot of lightroom – because I can see a bunch of other frames too. I’ve always enjoyed looking at other peoples contact sheets (more so than my own) as it gives an insight into the shoot, and what came before and after the “keeper” – the build up to the story if you will.

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