Wilburn Ridge at 500N, Appalachian Trail, Virginia. 2020.
Wild Ponies graze beneath low mid-morning clouds along the Wilburn Ridge in southwest Virginia near northbound mile 500 of the Appalachian Trail. Several herds of 10-15 wild ponies range across approximately 5,000 acres within the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests and Grayson Highlands State Park. Introduced following logging of the mountaintops, the hundred or so ponies maintain the balds by eating grasses and small shrubs. The Wilburn Ridge Pony Association conducts annual roundups to control the population’s health and size. This image was composed along the Appalachian Trail between northbound miles 500 and 501 in the Mount Rogers National Recreation Area. Continue hiking north or south to travel the entire length of the more than 2,000-mile-long national recreation trail.
Captured on Ilford FP4 125 4×5 sheet film with a Caltar II-N 210mm lens. Scanned with an Epson Perfection v850 Pro. This scene was shot south of Grayson Highlands State Park in Grayson County, Virginia on June 14, 2020.