We had a wonderful visit with Mike and Sara last week in Wisconsin. We waited until April to go so the weather would have time to warm up. And it did – but it was still a change for Lynn and I. We’re used to Florida’s climate.
On one day, we drove up into Door County and had a good time tasting local wines. The area’s scenic, although not quite thawed out yet. It was just above freezing with a strong wind – nice and brisk! This photo is from Fish Creek Harbor.
Spring is on the way – Door County, Wisconsin
By way of contrast, yesterday in Florida looked like this. When I made the photo, it was in the mid-70s and on the way up to 90 degrees F.
No one watching? – Just south of Rotary Riverfront Park in Titusville, Florida
We did find patches of color while we were in Wisconsin. Here’s one scene we all enjoyed on another morning.
So that’s our version of personal climate change over the last week. It was chilly in Wisconsin, but we got a very warm welcome. And if you clicked on this hoping for a debate about global warming, sorry. Maybe another day.
Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go spend time with your family – and make some photos!
I apologize for not publishing a post last weekend. We’ve had a very busy week with family and the Christmas holiday. I’ll try to make up for it today with this Central Florida Photo Op review of Universal’s Islands of Adventure Theme park.
Dawn at Hogwarts Castle
Islands of Adventure is right next to Universal Studios and City Walk and is one of the newest theme parks in the Orlando area. It opened in 1998, and this year (2010), Universal added a new “island” to the park – The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. This much awaited addition has been extremely popular and is a must see for Harry Potter fans.
Ollivander’s wand shop
The park also has a Port of Entry and 5 other “islands”: Marvel Super Hero Island; Toon Lagoon; Jurassic Park; The Lost Continent; and Suess Landing. Depending on your interests these will be more or less appealing to you.
Info for Photographers
Photo hints: The line to the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey winds through Hogwarts Castle and has many, many photo ops along the way. Be prepared so you don’t hold up people or lose your place. Most of the photo ops are at close range, so use your flash and fire away.
Tripod/Monopod: I did see one person using a tripod, but I think it’s very impractical. When you’re inside and need it, you won’t have time or space to use it because you’ll be in a ride queue. Outside you’ll have plenty of light, and the crowds will make setting up very difficult. And the less equipment you have to carry on the sometimes cramped rides, the better.
Lenses: Nothing too extreme is needed – a mid range zoom is enough to capture many fine images at this park. You can use a flash too, so you don’t have to worry too much about fast, heavy lenses.
Best time to visit: Winter is a great time to visit, since you’ll be blessed with fine Florida weather. If you time your visit right, you can even see some color in our trees.
Pick a day when no fronts are coming through and you’ll avoid the rain. If you’re a big Harry Potter fan, you’ll want to research strategies for the best ways to get in quickly to this area – it can get quite jammed with muggles. We arrived at the park before it opened, made straight for the area and did pretty well. Other people have had luck avoiding long lines by going late at night just before the park closes.
The muggles crowd in Hogsmeade Village
Several rides at Islands of Adventure will get you and possibly your photo gear wet. Take precautions when riding Popey & Bluto’s Bilge-Rat Barges, Dudley Do-Right’s Ripsaw Falls, and Jurassic Park River Adventure. There are lockers where you can store your gear. I wasn’t comfortable taking expensive camera gear through wet rides or leaving it in lockers, so I made do with my small Canon S90 which I could protect in my pocket.
The Mythos restaurant in the Lost Continent area is rated very highly and has some of the best theme park food in the world. It’s also fairly reasonably priced. We very much enjoyed our meal.
Tempura Shrimp Sushi appetizer
You can click on any of the photos above to go to Flickr, where you can see a larger version. The link to the rest of my Islands of Adventure photos is right below. You can look at all of the photos from our Christmas holidays in this Flickr set. Thanks for stopping by.