It is windy here. I broke my rule of lying fallow and gave myself an assignment:  Spend the day driving across the South Island and photograph windbreaks. They are everywhere – all encompassing, huge, long, and captivating.  Perhaps I am entering my Color Field Painting phase – should last about a week… Following is a lot of photos and just a few words. Some of the images might work better if you click them and fill your screen. WindBreaksLine1




WindBreakerScaleThe tanker truck gives a sense of scale and how big they actually are.  They can follow roads or hilltops. They can divide areas up into geometrically square patterns, like a labyrinth. They can meander across hills and valleys.

This image also gives an idea of the task it takes to prune these. I was hoping to see the process, but only saw the equipment, I presume, that does it.

Blade is about 8 feet in diameter. Way taller than a human.






WindBreakInteriorI like this one. The inside goings-on.

Many times it was like looking at an Andy Goldsworthy who was willing to wait 30 years for nature to do its work.

In the end I got a bit bored.  It is hard to not find an interesting photo of windbreaks.  They are a dime-a-dozen here.

And, as I have said, the best part was the absolute silence for most this day. No traffic. No airplanes in these massive blue skies.


6 thoughts on “Windbreaks

  1. Dan, I am really enjoying reading your observations as well as seeing the marvelous photos. What a gift to the rest of us who have not been to Tasmania or New Zealand! Thank you.

    1. Thanks Bev. Glad that a few people are reading this! I am enjoying doing it. It gives a reason to be taking the photos. I remember the old days when people who traveled would put together a “slide show” of thier trip and invite people over to see it. It was great. It gave a narrative sense to it. Today, with Facebook, it is just a meaningless jumble of quick unrelated images lost in the endless feed. I didn’t want to do Facebook, Flickr, Instagram, etc. A year from now, the blog will be for Emily and I. Hope all is well.

      1. I, too, really enjoy reading your blog. Fun to see your view of the landscape you are immersed in. Are the tree tops trimmed solely for aesthetic reasons? Trimming the branches facing a road makes sense.

    1. I saw a few. I don’t have much info here, but it is clear that there are not a lot of people living on the South Island – or New Zealand in general. The demand for electricity is not at all like in the states. I would suspect that solar would be a much better solution. It is really bright and sunny here – like in Australia and the South West of the US.

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