The Mabry Grist Mill & Babcock State Park, West Virginia
All photographs Copyright © 2010 Jon R. Vermilye
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This will be my second trip to shoot waterfalls in the South (well, at least south of New York!) , and my 3rd trip to Ricketts Glen State Park. If you have been a viewer of my other pages, you will quickly discover that I enjoy photographing moving water, waterfalls in particular. Ricketts Glen is a wonderful place to photograph both. There are 22 named waterfalls in the park as well as two streams filled with cascades. I visited the park on a RV trip to Pennsylvania in 2001, and again last spring. In both cases, I felt the images would be better with the fall colors as a background. So, I planned a fall trip.
As long as I was heading south, I also decided to try to hit Babcock State Park in West Virginia for a fall visit (Spring 2010 trip to Babcock State Park) which contains one of the most photographed grist mills in the country. On the way I made a short stop at the bridge on US 19 crossing the New River Gorge, missing "Bridge Day" by a week. On "Bridge Day" they close the bridge, set up food & craft booths and allow base jumping from the bridge into the gorge below.
I also took a side trip to the Mabry Grist Mill along the Blueridge Parkway. The next part of the trip was driving the lower section of Skyline Drive. I met my daughter, her husband & granddaughter in Front Royal and followed them back to their home in Washington, DC.
That was the basic itinerary of the trip - I've divided it into sections so the same first section will appear in all of them.
Here is an index of the trip:
Day 1 Ricketts Glen
Page 2 of Ricketts Glen
Page 1 of New River Gorge & Babcock State Park
Mabry Grist Mill & More of Babcock State Park - You don't need it - you are here!
Skyline Drive & Washington, DC
Washington DC, Day 2
While the Glace Creek Grist Mill in West Virginia is one of the most popular with photographers & painters, I suspect because of its location on the Blueridge Parkway the Mabry Grist Mill is the most popular in the East, at least in Virginia. It is in a pretty location and viewable from the road. The color & light was great - I was there about a half hour before sunset. It was very crowded - difficult to get photographs without people so I did what I could.
After leaving the mill it was back to the Rainelle Motor Lodge. I arrived back at Rainelle around 8:30, grabbed a quick McDonald South Western Salad for dinner, and set the alarm (something I have only had to do 3-4 times since retiring) for 6:15AM.
It was interesting - I expected the GPS to route me back to the park on the same dirt road it wanted me to use to get from the part to Rainelle, but it didn't. Instead, it routed me along US Route 60. Who knows why? Anyhow, I was the first into the parking lot for the mill. I picked out a location & set up my tripod & waited for the sun. And waited. And waited some more. Although it did get lighter, there was cloud cover until well after 9:30. Since I wanted to meet my daughter & her family somewhere along Skyline Drive, I left around 10:00. Here are a few morning images:
If you are interested in following the rest of my "Fall Photo Trip" the next page is Skyline Drive.
New River Gorge Bridge & Babcock State Park, Page 1
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Last Update: March 21, 2012