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Athens is a quaint village just north of the Rip Van Winkle Bridge and across the river from Hudson, NY. At one time there was a fierce rivalry between the two, which is hard to imagine given that Athens doesn’t seem like much more than a hamlet, whereas Hudson is clearly a city of industry. At any rate what I like about Athens (and the west bank of the Hudson) is direct river access. This means great river views and a good perspective. I managed to get to Athens in time for a leisurely sunrise with ambient temperature being about 10F. Nothing like working with cold gear, but at least the batteries lasted longer than when I took pictures in Fairbanks, AK circa -40F. Nothing like freezing virtually your whole body off and discovering that your fully charged battery has drained in the 10 minutes you were setting up the tripod.

The goal of this shoot was to get the Athens lighthouse in the rays of sunrise. Unfortunately I discovered that its location makes it a poor candidate for morning shots, so I had to scrounge for other subjects. Thankfully the Hudson didn’t disappoint. First up is the sun illuminating a wide band of stratus-looking clouds.


Off in the distance you can see some steam rising off the open parts of the river. The sun was generous enough to illuminate the steam, giving it a nice mystical quality.


With the lighthouse off limits, my other goal was to catch an icebreaker. Thankfully as I set up, I started hearing one approaching. I managed to get a shot as it went through the open water with the steam. Neat!


Closer to shore, you can see some weathered and now frozen pier posts. Way off in the distance is the Athens lighthouse, which is more or less a modified brick Italianate.



The glow of sunrise gave everything a pinkish hue. Here’s a nice Federal style brick home and tree that pick it up rather nicely. In fact I was astonished how the otherwise drab, brown, leafless shrubs lit up in the morning sun.