To the bay as the crow flies

ViewFinder

October 22, 2006|By Glenn Fawcett | Glenn Fawcett,Sun Staff

On a recent assignment to take aerial photos of wetlands on the Chesapeake Bay, I had the opportunity to fly to Ocean City, about an hour's journey by single-engine Cessna, the shortest time I have ever taken to travel there.

Cut away were the usual middlemen of an otherwise three-hour commute: the traffic on the Bay Bridge, the troopers in the median fishing for speeders on U.S. 50, boxy and alien hotels standing guard over the sea, demanding their own greedy toll of course.

From the sky, the crashing fury of the ocean surf appeared tame and docile. And as the afternoon sunlight settled from the west, the texture of sand and sea etched a scene like old paint peeling from a barn wall.

Looking down on the sand and sea terrain below, I saw lonely footprints crossing through the viewfinder, the only sign of a human presence this October afternoon. In my hurry to photograph it leaning slightly out the open window, I randomly wondered what sort of an indentation my camera and heavy lens would make if the passing wind, 100 mph or more, should snatch it away. My grip tightened as a chill rippled through me, though it was gone in a millisecond.

A portfolio of other images taken by Sun photographers can be seen at www.baltimoresun.com/viewfinder.

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