Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Delaware Bay, Part I

I took Friday off so Bill and I could go on a photography weekend to the Delaware Bay area. We were lucky to have perfect weather predicted with low humidity. Even the traffic wasn't bad and before too long we had arrived in the Lewes area. We headed straight for the Cape Henlopen State Park and Fort Miles.
Fort Miles was a WWII defense camp watching over the Delaware River since this was an access point to Wilmington or Philadelphia. Heavy guns and searchlights watched over the bay until long range missiles were used, so by 1958 Fort Miles was no longer needed.
It's now part of the park with the buildings and guns still in place for people to explore.
I loved the abandoned atmosphere, the guns still looking formidable as they silently pointed to ghosts of past enemies. Fort Miles was the largest of the East Coast posts with 2500 personnel ready to spring into action, and after the war became a research and development test range for future weapons. It's now being preserved and restored, details can be found on their blog here.
We walked down to the beach at the park, surprised that barely anyone else was there. The air felt still and warm, clouds filled the sky with a bright sun persistently peeking through, so we hoped a beautiful sunset would develop later.
A few dead horseshoe crabs lay on the sand after their recent spawning. It saddened me to see these that hadn't made it back into the water but of course life has its casualties. I had witnessed their annual spawning two years ago at Slaughter Beach and made a mental note to try and come back next year, now that I had a better camera.
Bill set his camera and tripod on the sand to wait for the first colors to creep into the sky. I wandered along the beach and then laid on the warm sand to take photos.
The sky slowly darkened, with yellows and peachy tints softening the horizon and silhouetting the lighthouse out in the water.
We were treated to a spectacular show, the yellows and oranges slowly turning to pinks and reds, with the sun throwing a long line of shimmering firelight hues across the water to the wet sand at our feet. The side of the lighthouse looked as though flames were licking up the walls and the seagulls laughed above us. A few other folks had walked to the beach to also enjoy the show and we all silently watched as the light dimmed, the colors finally fading into a dark night.

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