Scenic Cole Road

December 12, 2023  •  Leave a Comment

35mm Nikon F4 Film Camera, AF 50mm f/1.8 LensNikon F4Nikon F4, AF 50mm f/1.8 Fall is wonderful to be outside, period. This day, the mode of transportation was a motorcycle and the location the rural roads south of Orchard Park, NY. I have picked a few photographs from the wonderful Cole Road that follows one of the local ridges and provides some beautiful distant views as well as roadside points of interest.

Since colors were the focus I had a camera loaded with Kodak Portra 400. And while I like the old manual cameras for my black and white photography I often go more electronic and automatic with color photography. I think it started with family portraiture where I did not want to rely on my not so great sight and neither did I want unfocused photographs that my family love so much. I guess that extended beyond portraiture. With color film, I'll usually be out with a Nikon N75, an F4, or more recently a Minolta Maxxum 5. For this ride, it was the big Nikon.

I have a fancy padded compartment for my cameras when out and about on the motorcycle. I stuff snow pants in the seat bag completely filling it and then squeeze the camera in the center giving it plenty of padding on all sides and hopefully protecting it from all of the motorcycle vibrations.

Leaning Tree on Cole Road, Orchard Park, New York. Nikon F4, Kodak Portra 400, C-41.LeaningCole Road

Leaning Tree on Cole Road, Orchard Park, New York
Photographed with a 35mm Nikon F4 on Kodak Portra 400 Color Negative Film

On both its northern and southern ends Cole Road features steep climbs and the peak of the ridge rewards those that make it. I must say, doing this on a bicycle would likely be the most rewarding way but I admit I have not done that yet. Writing this is merely planting a crazy seed for a distant future. And crazy it is, don't believe me? See this color-coded topographical view of the road.

Cole Road Topographic MapCole RoadTopographic Map

Cole Road Topographic Map

Feel like a challenge? Don't let me stop you! At almost exactly the peak of the road, at 1,594 feet (486 meters) the church and the view below will greet you and it will literally be down hill from there. While I was motorized and thus my legs were not objecting, seeing the ominous clouds rolling in made me wonder whether I'd make it home dry or drenched. I really loved the dramatic light though with sunshine overhead and on the church and darkness beyond. Opportunities like this cannot be passed up on and I obviously made a photo stop.

Church on the Hill, Cole Road, Orchard Park, NY. Nikon F4, Kodak Portra 400, C-41.Church on the HillCole Road

Church on the Hill, Cole Road, Orchard Park, NY
Photographed with a 35mm Nikon F4 on Kodak Portra 400 Color Negative Film

Other than the beautiful road itself and the stormy drama there were quite a few other beautiful spots to pull over for, enjoy, and photograph. Lone trees are such a photographic cliché but in my opinion for a good reason. They are so eye-catching, and each so different. Too much for you? No point following this post any further.

Golden Top Tree, Cole Road, Orchard Park, NY. Nikon F4, Kodak Portra 400 Color Negative Film, C-41.Golden Top TreeCole Road

Golden Top Tree, Cole Road, Orchard Park, NY
Photographed with a 35mm Nikon F4 on Kodak Portra 400 Color Negative Film

It's always great to get some remaining greenery in fall photographs. It sets the warm colors off and balances the landscape better. Not much was left in the scene above but just enough at the bottom portion of the tree crown to separate the tree from the field. Compare to the tree below.

Tree of Gold, Cole Road, Orchard Park, NY. Nikon F4, Kodak Portra 400 Color Negative Film, C-41.Tree of GoldCole Road

Tree of Gold, Cole Road, Orchard Park, NY
Photographed with a 35mm Nikon F4 on Kodak Portra 400 Color Negative Film

In the final scene, the landscape fully matured for the fall season and the incoming weather provided a perfect background. I really could not have asked for a more productive collaboration!

Enjoy The Beauty That Surrounds You! #etbtsy

References: Color-coded topographic maps

Do you enjoy reading my photography blog? Would you like to see more photographs from Buffalo and Western New York? Visit my Buffalo Cityscapes and Buffalo & Western New York Landscapes and enjoy! For more travel photography, my Travel Photography gallery offers an interesting mix of places all around.

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