Spanning the Mississippi

Landscape Photography of Natchez Bridge

“Spanning the Mississippi”

As a child, I sometimes played along the banks of the mighty Mississippi on the Natchez side when I visited my great Aunt. At the time, she lived on Canal Street directly on top of the bluff that overlooked the river. The site where her house stood is now part of the National Park that dominates the overlook. My siblings and my cousins would gather there to play almost every weekend, and we became very familiar with the entire area. I clearly remember the unusual, coarse, gritty consistency of the river sand and clay, and all of the river debris that washed up on the banks: old dead tree stumps, trash, bottles, logs, lumber and sometimes, the heavy steel cabled tow-ropes as seen in the foreground here, laying half buried in sand. 

While my forays took me up and down the banks on the Natchez side, I rarely visited the Vidalia side of the river. At the time there were concrete pallets being made int he area under the bridge if I remember correctly. This photograph is form the Vidalia side, which obviously is much more accessible to viewers. Despite the modern bridges, this “trolls-eye view” has an ancient lonely, melancholy feel to it; which for me, the river has always seemed to exude. The river and its ever-shifting banks are a favorite subject matter for my landscape images, and she always seems to present a new and fresh face.

This shot is from the Vidalia, Louisiana side looking back east across the river toward Natchez, Mississippi. It was taken in May 2015 with a Nikon D810, using a Nikkor 16mm fisheye lens: f/3.5; ISO 64; at 1/25th of a second.

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