The Bluff on Goose Creek: Our Front Yard

The bluff: resistant rock not yielding to Goose Creek. Not yet, anyway.

And so today, we’ll see temps near 70, and Monday’s snow will seep into the soil and from there, into the bedrock fissures and fractures that will store that February snow, for who knows how long. Either someone like us will suck it up soda-straw fashion into our well, faucet, shower and cooking pot; or it will more likely eventually follow the gradient of gravity downhill, to find an outlet in a thousand seeps and small springs that feed into Goose Creek and carry this week’s snow into the Atlantic or clouds that will come back to wet us again in April.

This is one of my favorite places on “our” land–the bluff overlooking Goose Creek shortly after Nameless Creek joins it, 25 feet below and about 100 yards southeast of the corner of the front porch

The image started out as a segment of a 360 pano with the iPhone. I flattened it into a plane at, and then rendered it in a painterly way to enjoy. Click here for a larger view of the flattened image, or here for the interactive pano. (Notice on the left you can hit the minus sign to make the image smaller, which I recommend for most monitors.) Can you spot the puppy in the view? She’s the same color as the reflections.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. I love the painterly effects you added to the photo. And I saw Gandy, once you pointed her out. What a lovely spot indeed. Your snow sure didn’t get to hang around long, with 70 degree temps.