White on blue


It’s time for some fluffy eye candy.

This has, so far, been a strange winter. There has been far less snowfall than last winter, but it has been much colder. Black ice has been a recurring problem for residents of the Piedmont this month.

However, on January 28th we were treated to a rare view. Well, it’s rare for this area. The Blue Ridge Mountains had white caps, which generally only occur when there has been a lot of cold weather for a long period of time. Without this, sufficient snow and ice doesn’t have time to accumulate, even at the higher elevations. This winter has certainly provided a lot of cold air. My friends in the northeast are probably wishing for less cold air at this point.


I haven’t seen whitecaps since visiting the White Mountains of New Hampshire during winter, almost twenty years ago.

Both photos were taken from my workplace, around noon on January 28, 2015.

Coordinates (of viewer): 38°44′28″N 77°97′38″W


Views from Mt. Pony


I work for the National Audio-Visual Conservation Center of the Library of Congress, located just outside of Culpeper, Virginia. The building is a converted Cold-war federal reserve bunker located on – and in – the side of a mountain. This building was selected for the underground storage rooms, which could be easily converted into climate controlled vaults for the storage of nitrate movie film, and other sensitive storage media.

Besides being an interesting building, and an interesting place to work, it offers some unique visuals of the Piedmont region of Virginia.


This image was taken on August 14 of 2014, from the cafeteria veranda. From here it is possible to see for several miles, especially on a clear day. The mountains in the background are part of the Blue Ridge Chain. The famous Blue Ridge Parkway snakes through those very mountains.


This one was taken from just outside the main entrance, on October 29, 2014. The interesting light greatly accented the wildflowers.


This one, however, taken from the same location but with a different angle on the camera, brings out the strange weather pattern that had been visiting the area. If you look into the valley, you will see a full cloud system settled right on top of the town of Culpeper. The driving was very strange that day, given that the town was fully engulfed in fog.


Finally, there is this impressive sunset, taken from the parking lot on the south side of the building. It was taken on November 19 of 2014, and it was bitter cold out. In truth, the cold may account for why the colors were so brilliant.