Friday, April 16, 2010

Gettysburg: McPherson's Ridge Photos

Below are some photos from out Christmas 2008 day trip to Gettysburg. It was in the low 40's, cold for us Floridians, and extremely windy, making the observation towers like a thrill ride. Visiting in the winter and after Christmas was great--few tourists with their cars clogging the roads and bare trees allowing us really good views.

Jeremy and I had a great time. The last time we had been to the battlefield was Summer 1994, when we took Jeremy's great grandmother (my grandmother) for her first visit of the battlefield. It was an emotional trip for her, like it is for so many. She died later that year on Thanksgiving day.

These photos will probably be a bit random. I shot things so I would remember how the lay of the land looked, so I could try to capture its feel on a game table or train layout. I ignored shooting some of the famous landmarks because I knew I could get tons of such photos online. I also took detailed photos of things like various fences and rock walls so I could better model them. (I'm the same guy who takes photos of drainage ditches along railroad rights of way.) I am not a Gettysburg expert by any means, so this won't be one of those history lesson series. Just some photos I enjoy.

The Railroad Cut
This is the railroad cut running along McPherson Ridge. Being an old railroader, my first impression was that they had just laid new ballast on the tracks. This was unfinished during the battle.

McPherson's Barn
Looking west toward the famous farm. I was struck by the gently rolling hills all along McPherson's Ridge and the vast expanse of open land. I've played this scenario a dozen times, playing both Hill and Reynold's. I always have seen close-ups of the barn, but never really see long-shots of how the barn and from fit into the landscape.

How Do People Live Up Here!
I think Jeremy said that line way too many times to way too many relatives in PA. He was commenting on the cold weather and the hills. He is a real Floridian and hates anything other than flat land. This is one of my favorite shots from the day, him standing on the observation deck near McPherson's barn. The wind was really whipping, with 40mph gusts. A few months later, his braces came off.

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