After a beautiful camping trip to Cape Cod this weekend, I thought I’d take the opportunity to practice my photo essay assignment that I will eventually be composing for Scott Thomas’s challenge due in September.
My family and a group of close friends visited Shawme Crowell State Forest in Sandwich, MA this past weekend for our annual group camping trip. Shawme Crowell is part of the extensive Massachusetts state park system. It offers 285 shaded sites for both tents and campers on 700 acres of pine forest and is conveniently located less than 2 miles from the Cape Cod Canal Recreation Area. (Do I get my extra credit for including people in this shot, Scott?)
The Cape Cod Canal is a 17.4 mile long waterway which artificially divides the pennisula of Cape Cod from the mainland of Massachusetts. It saves ships much distance in travel by not having to go completely around the “arm” of Cape Cod, as well as helps them to avoid the hazardous waters off the outer Cape and Nantucket Sound which were responsible for many shipwrecks during the 18th and 19th centuries. Seven point seven miles of land was cut during the project that began in May 1909 and finished in July 1914. The canal was originally a toll system, but when it failed to make money for its owners was sold to the U.S. government in 1928. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers improved the waterway, making it deeper, wider and safer, as well as constructed the current bridges that serve as today’s transportation routes to the Cape.
The Bourne and Sagamore Bridges connect Cape Cod to mainland Massachusetts. The original bridges built before the canal first opened, were draw bridges. The bridges that we travel today bear the same names as the originals, but were reconstructed when the U.S. government took over ownership of the canal. The Works Progress Administration approved the construction of the new bridges in 1933 and as much work as possible was hand labor in order to employ as many people as possible. They opened to traffic in 1935.
I don’t know if this is exactly what Scott is looking for; I had a difficult time showing my places of interest with only one photo each.
Correctly done photo essay or not, we had a lovely camping trip. This trip is a tradition with a group of friends that has gone on for more years than I care to count now. We’ve been to many different campgrounds over the years and have expanded the trip to include our children as each couple’s family grew. We don’t camp simply either! We plan out great meals and all share in the work of providing, cooking, serving and cleaning, and then retire to wonderful nights of telling stories, reminiscing and laughing around the campfire. It is a tradition we look forward to each year and that I hope will continue for many years to come.