Jamestown, Rhode Island, USA by Michael Blanchette

Picture Story

The Town of Jamestown is located on Canonicut Island in Rhode Island (USA), the second largest island in Narragansett Bay. It lies directly across the bay from Newport, a famous New England summer resort on Aquidneck Island known for its Gilded Age mansions and its rich sailing history (Newport hosted the America’s Cup between 1930 and 1983).

The Clairborne Pell Bridge, commonly known as the Newport Bridge, is a suspension bridge that spans the East Passage of Narragansett Bay. The bridge connects Newport on Aquidneck Island with Jamestown on Conanicut Island. It was named for Rhode Island senator, Clairborne Pell, who lived in Newport and served in the Senate for over 30 years.

I’ve photographed this bridge on many occasions, from both the Jamestown side and the Newport side. But on this late February morn, I had planned to make my way down to shore on the Jamestown side at dawn. At that time of year, the scene is backlit at sunrise, and I was hoping to catch a colorful sky over the bridge and the city of Newport.

While passing over the bridge from Newport to reach Jamestown, I drove into thick fog, shattering any hope of seeing a colorful sky. But I decided to proceed as planned and see what developed. I positioned my tripod on the rocks, set up a composition, and waited.

It wasn’t until after sunrise that the sky finally took on a pastel pink hue and the fog receded enough to reveal a portion of the Claiborne Pell Bridge. This image shows a ghostly bridge seemingly to nowhere, a filtered sun reaching over the fog bank, and bridge pillars reflecting softly in the bay waters, which were rendered smooth by the 15-second exposure.

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