CREDITS: I would like to thank Jeremy D'Entremont for providing much of the history one can find on this site. He is a speaker, author, historian, and tour guide who is widely recognized as the foremost authority on the lighthouses of New England. For a story on Jeremy or to visit his site (New England Lighthouses: A Virtual Guide), use the corresponding link in the right hand information bar under "Related Links".

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I have set up this site as a means to share my photographs of lighthouses. Since retiring and finding more time to study photography, my interests have expanded a little. For some of my work other than lighthouses please enjoy my Facebook page at, John Shaw Photography. Come visit, enjoy, and 'LIKE' if you wish.

Also, for your enjoyment, I have provided a slideshow of our journey. To view it please use the link on the right under 'Site Navigation Tools'.

I sincerely hope you enjoy my efforts and use my site not only for information and education but also to provide directions for many enjoyable, inspirational visits to the beacons along our beautiful coas.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Asticou Azalea Garden #4

     Thank you for joining my wife and I on our visit to the Asticou Azalea Garden in Northeast Harbor, Maine.  It certainly is a very special place to visit on a day trip.  I sincerely hope you enjoy my sharing of my work.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Asticou Azalea Garden #3


     The garden is located at the intersection of Route 198 and Rout 3 (Peabody Drive) in Northeast Harbor.  The Parking area is on Route 198.

Friday, May 25, 2012

The Asticou Azalea Garden #2

A Brief History

     Charles K. Savage, a life-long resident of Northeast Harbor and the owner of the Asticou Inn, created the Asticou Azalea Garden in 1956.  He was inspired by his love of native plants, his study of Japanese garden design, and his desire to preserve the plant collection of Beatrix Ferrand,renowned American landscape designer and pioneer for women in that profession.  When Mrs. Ferrand dismantled heer Reef Point estate in Bar Harbor, Mr. Savage garnered financial support from John D. Rockefeller, Jr. To purchase the plants and build the Asticou Azalea Garden in Northeast Harbor.

    The Azalea Garden is styled after a Japanese stroll garden with many traditional Japanese design features adapted for the natural setting and vegetation of coastal Maine.  A meandering path leads visitors through a succession of garden rooms that inspire serenity and reflection or bring to focus a particularly lovely vista.

     The garden’s design creates an illusion of space, the lakes and mountains and distant horizons.  The “sand garden” along the eastern edge of the stream uses rocks and raked sand to suggest islands and flowing water.  The placement of the sand garden next to the stream enhances the beauty and character of each.

     Mr. Savage’s sensitive use of natural nevetation, stones, and water in combination with azaleas, rhododendrons,m and other specimen plants from Reef Point achieves a lovely balance of natural and man-made beauty.  The result is a wonderful blend of East and West.

     Once again thank you for sharing my journey.  I sincerely hope you enjoy my work half as much as I enjoy sharing it.  

The Asticou Azalea Garden #1

     The Asticou Azalea Garden in Northeast Harbor, Maine, is an elegant and priceless garden filled with wonderful visual delights that will stimulate the soul. The design is fluid allowing interlacing discoveries that will bring delightful pause as you meander through the pathways that are bordered with charm. Sit and reflect on the many benches provided while you breathe in the aroma. This is one of the wonderful jewels of Mount Desert Island in Maine.

     The original Asticou Azalea Garden was built in 1956 and 1957 largely as the result of the passion and vision of Charles Savage. Many revisions have taken place over the following years. Today, the garden is owned and maintained by the Mount Desert Land and Garden Preserve and a committee of volunteers. Contributions to aid in its support are welcomed. Visitors are asked to donate $1.00.

           Thank you for visiting Maine Lighthouses and Beyond.  This is the first of four posts on the gardens.  Please look for the upcoming posts.  This is a very special place.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

El Faro de Cabo Falso (Lighthouse of the False Cape) in Los Cabos, Mexico

      Built in 1890, the abandoned lighthouse signaled ships from 1895 to 1961.  Not much more than a base remains of this lighthouse, the original lens is now installed in a newer lighthouse higher on the beach. 

      The view is spectacular from 500 feet above water, it's surrounded by loose sand for at least a half mile. In addition to the lighthouse it also has the remains of a shipwreck below. Turtles use this beach to lay their eggs.

     It can be approached on foot, ATV or horse.  Go north of town on Highway 19; at Km 2, take a left turn on the dirt road that leads to Cabo Falso.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Mazatlan Lighthouse - El Faro

      After negotiating a dirt path and climbing more than 300 concrete steps, you arrive at the top of Cerro de Creston and El Faro. El Faro is the second natural highest lighthouse in the world at 523 feet from high tide, and the view of his domain is well worth the imposing climb. The birds are flying below you, boats rock in the harbor, waves crash at the base of the hill and all of Mazatlán, the Pacific, the Sierra Madres and the surrounding area is spread out in front of you.
     It’s 1821, and the Pacific Ocean is a very busy place with the trade market and the gold rush. Spanish rule is over, and the port has not seen pirates since before 1800. The City of Mazatlán received a decree by Cortes de Cadiz making it the first port in Mexico on the Pacific Coast. It was immediately one of the most important on the Pacific, along with San Francisco, California, and Valparaiso, Chile.
     Mazatlán was the main supplier of imported merchandise for the states of Sonora, Durango, Chihuahua, Nayarit, Jalisco and Baja California. It is said that an average of 60 ships a year from the United States, Europe and the Far East entered the harbor, oddly enough with no help from any navigation system for 7 years. That changed in 1828, when Isla de Creston (Yes! It used to be an island, more on that later …) began to be utilized for marine signaling. For the first 60 years, it was a very crude operation, merely a rubblework pavilion, with torches and bonfires that were lit using wood and coal, to create a tenuous light at best, that only could be seen from a very short distance. Eventually this was replaced by oil and kerosene lamps, which made for a much stronger, constant light. Then, in mid-1879, a small tower was constructed and a lamp installed that had been handcrafted in Paris. It ran on oil and used mirrors and a Fresnel lens to enhance the light, which was a vast improvement.

    The next milestone for El Faro was in 1892. Porfirio Diaz was President of Mexico and a great era of prosperity was underway. The railroad arrived, the port and lighthouse were modernized and the cathedral was finished. There was a new age of enlightment and education; the arts and journalism flourished. The president of the port, Don Bernardo Vazquez, and the city engineer, Jose Natividad Gonzáles, oversaw the final adaptations to the lighthouse, as well as the extension of the jetty and its artificial fill. These operations turned Isla de Creston from an island to being connected to the mainland, thus becoming Cerro de Creston.

     In 1905 the lamp was once again converted, this time to a revolving type, and with the exception of a few more minor modifications in 1933, the lighthouse became the El Faro we know now. El Faro is seven meters (23 feet) high, with a 1000-watt bulb that’s the equivalent of 600,000 candles and can be seen from 30 nautical miles (60 km).

     In 1905 the lamp was once again converted, this time to a revolving type, and with the exception of a few more minor modifications in 1933, the lighthouse became the El Faro we know now. El Faro is seven meters (23 feet) high, with a 1000-watt bulb that’s the equivalent of 600,000 candles and can be seen from 30 nautical miles (60 km).

      El Faro is arguable the most recognizable symbol of Mazatlan. His constant beam of light has shone upon the city and all its transformations throughout the years, and will undoubtedly see much more. Viva Mazatlan and Viva El Faro!

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Sunday, May 20, 2012

Spring at the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens #5

     This is my fifth and final post on springtime at The Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens.  Thanking for visiting. I hope you will spend some time here exploring all that this site has to offer.  Enjoy!

Random Sculpture and Flowers

The Giles Rhododendron Gardens

The Giles Rhododendron Gardens

Pine Tassel

Tulip Tree

Fancy Tulip

Porcupine Rebar Sculpture

Dragonfly Rebar Sculpture

Mother Earth

Owl on the Wing

No Name Sculpture

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Spring at the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens #4

The Bibby and Harold Alfond Children's Garden

Children's Garden Entrance

Spouting Whales

Stepping Stones

Pond and Bridge

Coloring Barn

Story Barn
Story Chair

Mr. McGregor's Garden Wind Mill
     Once again thank you for visiting.  I sincerely appreciate your support of my efforts to share some of my work.