Monday, December 28, 2009

Snoqualmie Falls in Winter

Snoqualmie Falls is one of Washington state's biggest tourist attractions, attracting over 1.5 million visitors per year. It's close proximity to Seattle makes it an ideal destination of convenience. And it is a worthy destination indeed.

The Snoqualmie River drops 270 feet over the famous falls in thunderous fashion. It is truly a spectacle to behold no matter the time of season you visit.

Some seasons do offer more than others however. Spring presents high water volumes as the snow begins to melt in the high country. The summer sun lights up the falls and northwest facing cirque, creating unforgettable evenings at sunset. November rains and warm temperatures often result in flooding along the Snoqualmie River, making the falls not only thunderous and wet while observing from the deck, but sometimes difficult to get to due to road closures. December brings freezing temperatures and scenery more typically associated with Alaska or some other cold climate. The rewards can be breathtaking!

A couple of weeks ago I packed the truck up in darkness and headed over Tiger Mountain to the falls in hope of finding a winter wonderland. I was not disappointed! The spray from the falls coupled with low valley fog created a serene setting in the bowl of the falls. It was an incredible sight!

I began my morning at the observation deck, which I believe to be the best vantage for the falls. The birds eye view is second to none in my opinion.

Though others had the same idea in mind, the viewers were few early on. I spent a considerable amount of time playing with compositions. When I felt I had exhausted most all opportunities, I changed lenses for a different feel and started all over again. The wider angle lenses showed the massive waterfall in all its surroundings, while the zoom lens allowed me to isolate on certain unique features of the area that I felt told a story.

Finally it was time to move down to the viewpoint below the falls. A quick drive had me at the lower parking area and walking swiftly towards the falls. The path is interesting as it takes you past a PSE generator building on a chain link fenced boardwalk.

The view from the lower platform is quite interesting, but not on par with the observation deck above. Photographers will and do grow frustrated with it as branches interfere with prospective compositions.

So, despite the signs saying to stay on the boardwalk, visitors have created a well-worn path down the steep rock to the river's bank below, and unobstructed views to the main event.
The ice presented a lot of interesting compositions from here. I had a lot of fun isolating different elements and playing with compositions. The possibilities were endless with the various ice formations teasing me at every turn.

The area was also quite slick. Very slick in fact! Another photographer I ran into was wearing Yaktrax. As a mountain climber in ownership of several pairs of crampons, I must admit to always hoisting my nose in the air at these "wannabe" devices. Not anymore. I requested and received a pair for Christmas!

I strongly recommend visiting the falls in all seasons. And since I have yet to view them in summer, I will heed my own advice! November during flood stage is truly an incredible time to see them. Make sure you check for local road access before heading out, or your visit may be one of frustration. As you can see, winter offers a totally different perspective of the falls and surrounding area; one in which ice is the focus.

I hope you enjoy my sampling from the area, and that it motivates you to visit them for yourself. You may view more of my images from this location here if interested.

Be safe and enjoy!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

2010 Greater Seattle InfoGuide

I just received my copies of the 2010 Greater Seattle InfoGuide from Vernon Publications, which includes several of my images from around our state. It turned out quite nice!

The InfoGuide is a great publication to pick up if you are looking for things to get out and do, and is available at most hotels and tourist destinations around the greater Puget Sound area.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Return of the California Bighorn Sheep

I love visiting the Oak Creek Wildlife area outside of Naches in January/February each year and seeing the large numbers of California bighorn sheep descend from the hills above. The rams in particular are fun to watch, especially when they decide to practice their rutting techniques!

So it was a nice surprise when I was contacted by a graphic designer wishing to use one of my images for an interpretive sign in the Umatilla National Forest! The sign is to celebrate the return of the California bighorn sheep to Oregon after previously having been exterminated.

Through the efforts of the Oregon Department of Wildlife, the bighorn sheep have returned. They were reintroduced to Patomus Creek in 2003 and are now thriving in the area. This sign will be permanently displayed at an interpretive display there, and I am excited to go see it in person, as well as visit and learn about the area!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Backpacker Magazine Online

If you didn't get a chance to pick up the October issue of Backpacker magazine, you can catch the "National Parks Hall of Fame" article by Jim Gorman on their web site here.

The printed article is accompanied by a couple of my images from my trip to Glacier National Park last summer, in which we did a variation of the North Circle. However, only the image shown here supports the online version.

We spent a total of 7 days doing the North Circle in August, spending time at Granite Park, Fifty Mountain, Sue Lake, Stoney Indian Pass & Lake, Mokowanis Lake, Elizabeth Lake & Ptarmigan Tunnel. Sue Lake was accessed by climbing over the shoulder of Mt. Kipp from Fifty Mountain and descending the Chaney Glacier down to Sue Lake Bench. A cross country descent led us down to intersect the Stoney Indian Trail and put us back on the North Circle proper. This variation allowed us to avoid descending several thousand feet down to Waterton Lake, only to have to regain it again to Stoney Indian Lake. And Sue Lake Bench was worth its hardships in gold.

Here is a more detailed account of our trip posted on NWHikers, complete with pictures.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Covington Holiday Bazaar

My last show of the year was at the Covington Holiday Bazaar on Saturday. It was a little slower than I had hoped, but I still had a lot of fun. To those of you who stopped by to say 'hello', thank you - it was good to see you!

This show was made particularly interesting by the fact that my printer failed me on Thanksgiving morning, and had to be taken in for service. Due to part availability, I didn't receive it back until Friday afternoon - the day before the show! This made Friday night a late one, with an early rise Saturday morning to finish up!

My next scheduled appearance will be March 25th, 2010 at the Olympic National Park Visitors' Center Auditorium. I'll have more information as that date approaches.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Covington, here we come!

Is it really December already? Where did November go? For that matter, what happened to October?

Ok, reality check - December has arrived. This is the month I turn a year older, the bank account takes a serious hit "in the name of Santa", and my schedule gets turned upside down due to family commitments! But, there is something else...

The 2009 Covington Holiday Bazaar this Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Covington MultiCare Clinic!

This is our first year participating in this event, but we are pretty excited. It's a weekend long event, and includes the arrival of Santa and the lighting of the Christmas Tree. Should be a lot of fun! It will also likely be our last show of the year.

If you get a chance, come by and say hello. It would be fun to meet you!

I plan to have a lot of new prints available, and hopefully lots of new notecards as well. Did I mention it will be a lot of fun?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Fun at Martin Sortun!

A big Thank You to all who came out to see us at Martin Sortun on Saturday. We really had a lot of fun! It was a busy day for us again - very typical of this event. I recognized many return customers, while enjoying meeting many new and interesting people.

None could have been more interesting than a gentlemen from Auburn who, as it turned out, once lived in the exact same house I did as a kid! What are the odds?

Our note card line began to run a little thin towards the end, which made me a little nervous. This was due to a delay in shipment by our supplier, and is currently being rectified. We will have plenty on hand at our next show in Covington in a couple of weeks. More prints too! I'll have more details on that show soon.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Martin Sortun Craft Fair

I thought I would take a moment to post some updates tonight while I work on my inventory of matted prints. Lots of new stuff being added to the collection! Tomorrow night I will be working on notecards and display additions.

Why all this work? Because this Saturday we will be appearing at Martin Sortun's Craft Fair in Kent. Martin Sortun is the most recognized craft fair in the area, with lots of history. Over 60 vendors will be on hand. It's also well advertised. So, it stands to reason that we better have enough product!

If you get a chance and are in the area, please come by and see us from 9:00 am until 3:00 pm. I would love to meet you! Martin Sortun is just off 132nd Ave. in Kent (East Hill), just south of QFC.

View Larger Map

Our next appearance will be at the Covington Hollydaze Bazaar at the Convington MultiCare Clinic the first weekend in December. More on that later!

Unfortunately, we had to turn down the Meridian show this year due to a scheduling conflict. We will possibly revisit this one in the spring or next fall.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Snoqualmie Falls

Saturday morning I met up with my good friend Alan Bauer for a tour of the Snoqualmie valley in search of Trumpeter Swans, Snow Geese, and any other fowl that caught our attention.

En route to our meeting place in Fall City, I elected to detour through Snoqualmie for a look at the falls around sunrise.

The water volume was fairly low coming over the falls, but the hovering fog above the falls made the scene pretty interesting. Add the sun's early rays penetrating the fog layer and it made for a beautiful morning.

The same fog that added such attraction to the falls served as a detriment in our search for birds in the lower valley. As we drove through Carnation and Duvall, the fog grew thicker and visibility decreased. We had hoped that it would burn off by late morning, but it was not to be.

Still, it was good to see Alan again and learn about the valley he calls home. I'm sure I'll return again soon!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Go Army!

It always fascinates me to learn of the various industries interested in my images. Certainly many are industries and organizations I never would have thought of while out capturing the photographs.

In the case of this image, it is the United States Army! Yes, you read that correctly. This image of Mt. Rainier will appear on a trade booth for the next couple of years in the southeast region of our country.

The image was taken just above Moraine Park during a backpack to Mystic Lake. This is an area I really hope to get back to someday. Of course, it will be a much longer trip now with the closure of the Carbon River Road.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Sunrise Holiday Craft Fair a Success!

The Holiday Craft Fair at Sunrise Elementary yesterday was a success! I would like to extend a special Thank You to the coordinator of the event, Jennifer Ritchie.

Note cards were our most popular items, so it will be back to work to replace inventory. Also, I discovered we were sold out of some of our most popular Rainier prints - oops!

No worries. We will have plenty of stock at our next show in 2 weeks at Martin Sortun.

Also, we will be participating in the Covington Hollydaze Bazaar at the Convington MultiCare Clinic the first weekend in December. More on that later!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Autumn Craft Fair

I'm getting busy! Tomorrow night I will be judging images in the WTA Northwest Exposure photo contest, then it is back home to prepare for my upcoming display at Sunrise Elementary's Autumn Craft Fair on Saturday! Actually, the preparation work has already begun. The printer has been going non-stop!

If you happen to be in the Kent or Fairwood area between 9:00 am and 4:00 pm on Saturday, stop on by! I will have many new prints available, signed copies of my book Mount Rainier, and complete collection of note cards.

Sunrise Elementary
22300 132nd Ave S.E.
Kent, WA 98042

Hope to see you there!

Monday, November 2, 2009

WTA NW Exposure Contest

The deadline for the Washington Trails Association's 7th annual Northwest Exposure photo was October 16th, 2009. Now it's time to judge the entries.

Wednesday night I will be meeting with the other contest judges at the WTA office in Seattle where we will view each image projected on a wall and decide which ones are the best. This is always a fun event for me as I not only get to meet other fellow photographers, but enjoy the talented work of many new aspiring photographers as well.

Hopefully, some of the images I will be viewing Wednesday night will be yours!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Bandon, Oregon

This final installment of my Oregon coast trip has been a long time coming. But then Bandon, Oregon is certainly worthy of such a wait, offering my favorite beach of the entire Oregon coast.

Bandon is known for sea stacks – lots of ‘em. Choices for compositions are countless and it is hard to pick just one for that dramatic sunset. It was interesting to watch other photographers search out their position of choice and set up, only to find “something better” while waiting, and move again. I must include myself in that group.

The first day of my visit had been mostly cloudy, but showed signs of improving towards evening. A thick bank of clouds to the west left sunset in question and one could only wonder what kind of show, if any, might unfold. There seemed to be enough sucker holes in the clouds to invite a very dramatic sunset. Those same gaps in the clouds could also close and dash my hopes.

As it turned out, the sun played peek-a-boo as it set, but mostly remained hidden. It did cast a beautiful red sheen on the incoming tide. Such a reflection would have been brilliant on the still waters of a lake or tarn. But on the moving waters of the ocean in low light, it was difficult to render the scene as the eye witnessed it.

As soon as the sun dipped to the west, the fog quickly began to roll in and created some very interesting light and texture that I wasn't expecting. In fact, the light was much more impressive after the sun went down. A bright moon high in the sky added to the scene. I had mostly retreated back upslope to the parking lot, taking a direct approach which shielded my view to the south. When I popped up onto the pavement, I immediatley clambered into position and watched the fog roll in low while higher clouds appeared and disappeared above. Soon the fog enveloped the area and the evening show was done.

I returned a second night, but experienced nearly the opposite weather pattern. The day had been sunny and completely cloudless. As evening approached, so did a very thick marine fog. I couldn’t see from one side of the parking lot to the other by the time I retreated back to camp. Such occurance can be common in the summer months.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Show Time!

It's that time of year again. Fall is winding down as winter storms begin to approach the Pacific Northwest. Of course, this also means that its time for me to start working various arts and craft shows around the area, and likely some gallery presentations too!

I'm still working on appearance schedules. I do know I will be appearing at the 23rd annual Martin Sortun Holiday Bazaar on November 21st. It's one of the original bazaars in the Kent area and always has a great turnout.

Speaking of Kent, I had also hoped to participate in the popular Kent Holiday Bazaar at the Kent Commons downtown. But alas, it is not to be. I am on a waiting list in hopes of making the 2010 vendor list. Keep your fingers crossed for me!

The picture above is from one of our early booths. Gearing up for shows can be a bit of an investment initially, but worth it in the long run. We started out out with the backdrop panels seen in the picture, and have added notecard holders, book and calendar holders, and - yes, more panels!

I find working shows to be a lot of fun. I meet so many interesting people and enjoy sharing stories, answering questions, and learning various things about the people in my community.

I'll keep you appraised of future shows as time goes on. It would be fun to see you!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Backpacker Magazine

This past summer I spent a lot of time out of state. I visited Glacier National Park, Yellowstone National Park (yes, I still owe you THAT story!), the Oregon Coast, John Day Monunement, the Columbia Gorge National Scenic Area...oh, you get the idea.

So it has been fun to see the rewards from some of these trips in publications.

The image shown here is from my first evening of a seven day backcountry trip in Glacier National Park, known as The North Circle.

Before I left for the trip, I shot an e-mail to the photo editor of Backpacker Magazine informing her of my planned itinerary, in case there was anything I could help her with. She replied back that the magazine had no plans for any Glacier NP stories this year, but to have fun.

Less than a week before my departure, I received a request for images from the EXACT trip I was doing! Did I plant a seed? I can only wonder.

As a result of my submission upon returning, a few of my images were selected to appear in the pages of the magazine to support a story on - get this - The North Circle!

The image of the double-page spread is the best scan I could muster given the tools at my disposal. I would submit that the actual pages offer a much better viewing - available at a news stand near you! ; )

Oh, and a special plug for my friend Jon Cornforth, who's beautiful image from Saguaro National Park, AZ graces the front cover of the magazine.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Central Cascades Map

Spray Park is one of my favorite destinations in Mount Rainier National Park. It boasts incredible flower meadows in season, and offers enough exploring to exhaust a day for most hikers.

This image was take a few years ago at the beginning of flower season, noted by the lush display of avalanche lilies. It was a fun visit with many memories. Unfortunately, it also included severely turning my ankle on the way out in the dark after shooting sunset.

The painful memory still lingers in my mind, but is lightened by the fact that this image will be appearing in another publication - as a cover for a map of the Central Cascades cominge out soon.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Rampart Lakes in Fall

Rampart Lakes have held a special place in my memory ever since my first visit in 1996. For that visit, I arrived at the trail head in the dark of early morning and began my hike with headlamp in hopes of being at Rampart Lakes in time for somewhat early light. Colors were profuse, and I benefited from a recent dusting of snow on the higher peaks in tandem with a blue sky.

This trip would be a little different, though no less memorable.

I elected to do the trip as an overnight this time, wishing to enjoy both final and first light at the lakes. The forecast was for sunny skies the duration of my trip. As you can see, that was far from my experience.

I drove to the trailhead under mostly cloudy skies, and began my hike under similar fashion. As the morning wore on, the sun began showing signs of dominance with its bursts of light thru the weakening cloud layer, but it was not to be. By mid-afternoon, the clouds showed signs of strengthening.

As most photographers know, light cloudy skies are desirable for foliage as the diffused light brings out their natural colors. This served me well on close-ups of the lakes and the upper basin.

My goal, however, had been to photograph the recent snow on Rampart Ridge above the lakes, as I had in '96. I was never afforded the opportunity. When the lakes were lit, the ridge was dark and vice versa. Dem's da berries. You work with what you are dealt.

Discouraged by the clouds, I decided to climb up Rampart Ridge for a birds eye view of the area. The upper basin above the lakes was actually quite interesting, especially on my descent. The clouds above were working their magic on the sun's rays. Of course, I didn't realize it at the time. I planned to put my camera away for the evening.

I descended back to camp and waited. I watched the sky and the peaks around me. I've learned not to give up to soon, but these were thick clouds above. I had my doubts. The day had shown many signs that a predicted storm may have been advancing on the area quicker than forecast.

Still, I scouted compositions close to camp, which was placed in a most desirable location for reflections shots. Then I waited some more. Things did not look promising. I began cooking dinner and preparing for the cold night ahead.

Then it happened. The sun dipped below the cloud cover to the west and cast its magical light on the peaks around me. I raced to my camera, which was set up on Alta Mount. Hi Box was hid from me behind some trees near camp. After a couple of minutes of shooting Alta, curiosity got the best of me. I'm glad it did.

Nature often surprises you. I went into this trip with set hopes, and was totally thrown a curve. But in the end, I came away smiling and feeling blessed with what I had been served.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Fall Colors along Box Canyon Creek

A couple of weeks ago my friend Greg Vaughn and I had planned a trip up to Rampart Lakes to experience the fall colors. The trip fell through at the last moment due to me falling ill, but it remained on my mind.

Unfortunately, Greg's schedule wouldn't allow him to join me last weekend. And it was unfortunate, because he would have thoroughly enjoyed the colors at near peak conditions!

Driving to the TH along FS Road 4936, I couldn't help but notice a waterfall with yellow vine maple above it along Box Canyon Creek. The rock around it was also very interesting. I got out and scouted the area, choosing to descend down to the creek in search of interesting foreground. I didn't find much. I played with some things, but nothing I was very excited about. I slowly began working my way back to the truck, still keeping my eyes open for potential items of interest. Then I noticed a crimson colored bush slightly below me on the down-trending slope. I knelt down to view it from knee level and liked the possibilities. I composed several compositions similar to that above - all while laying on my side and my tripod low to the ground. I like this one the best.

Then it was off to the Rachel Lake TH - coming next!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Kids Hike to Tolmie Peak

Introducing children to the outdoors for the very first time is an incredibly rewarding experience for a parent. Helping them hoist that tiny pack onto their shoulders and seeing their face beaming with pride in anticipation of the unknown is something to behold. The images become permanent in your mind for years to come.

Shortly after my daughter Karissa turned 3 years old (top photo), I took her on her very first hike up to Eunice Lake and Tolmie Peak in Mount Rainier National Park. I think she had to take three steps for each of mine. I really didn’t think she would make it much further than the first mile, and made certain to bring the child carrier for when she exhausted herself.

Though tired, she hiked all the way to Eunice Lake by herself – 2-1/4 miles! After wading in the lake together and taking a long food break to restore her energy, I asked her if she wanted to go back to the car or continue on to the lookout. She thought about it long and hard before finally saying, “Daddy, I want to go to the tippy-tippy top!” And that she did.

Blueberries were the only thing working against me on that day. One was all it took to get her hooked! She arrived at the lookout to a celebratory greeting from everyone, and was offered many summit treats by all for her effort. Her smile was absolutely radiant, and as a dad my pride in her was indescribable.

That memory has remained with me as a favorite for the last three years.

My son Brendan turned 3 back in March and I have been waiting for September to roll around to share the same experience with him. The difference this time was that we were joined by his sister, some friends and my dad. This was a recipe for a fun day.

I learned early on that just 6 months difference in is considerable. At 3-1/2 years of age, Brendan’s endurance was much stronger than his sister's had been. Though, his weakness for blueberries was just as problematic!

When Brendan arrived at the lake, he couldn’t understand why we were stopping. His eyes were glued to the lookout above and he wanted to get up there. He played for a short period near the water, but after repeated urgings to get going, he hoisted his own pack on and began heading up the trail – on his own. His determination was impressive!

It was fun watching the kids hike together and watch their eyes as they discovered new things. Halfway along the lake they found a newt sunning itself on the trail. They were totally fascinated with this! It was also quite fun to watch them slow waaaay down along the trail while scanning for blueberries – their eyes sweeping the brush in search for the delicacy. And when they found one, all hiking came to an abrupt stop!

The hike was a complete success and enjoyed by all. Brendan not only completed the 6-1/2 miles round trip by himself, he was first back to the car at the end of the day. And yes, daddy was proud as ever once again.

Karissa is 6 years old now (second picture from top), and this once challenging hike for her was merely a stroll this time. Seeing how much she has grown since that first hike was really something. But it was also fun to watch her enjoying the area just as much, if not more, than our first trip.

If you share my love for the outdoors and have kids, I highly recommend getting them out and introducing them to it at an early age. Their abilities will likely surprise you and the moments will be cherished for a lifetime. Fall colors are alive in our mountains right now - a perfect time. Go!

Monday, September 28, 2009

WTA Northwest Exposure Photo Contest

The Washington Trails Association's 7th annual Northwest Exposure photo contest is underway now, with a deadline of October 16th, 2009. If you have an interest in photography and the outdoors, I highly recommend you consider it; it's a lot of fun!

I first became involved in the contest in 2006 when I entered this image of Prusik Peak at sunrise. The image won 1st Place in the Wilderness Landscape category, paving the way for several other honors and opportunities for the image and its use.

Since then, I have been asked to return to serve as a contest judge for the event, and have been honored to do so. The honor will continue for this year's 2009 contest.

Check out the Contest Rules and submit your best images for the five listed categories. If you place, your image will appear on the pages of the January/February 2010 issue of Washington Trails magazine.

About the Image: The image of Prusik Peak was taken very near camp at Sprite Lake in the Enchantment Lakes. It had rained all night. We awoke to find ourselves in clouds, with not much hope for a sunrise. Still I set up for this shot and watched the sky. Soon, hope emerged as the suns rays began to penetrate the low clouds and highlight the granitic peak. Then the larches began to turn a brilliant orange as the sun's rays penetrated further and cast magic upon the foreground. It was a celebration!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Rewards from Glacier National Park

My recent backcountry trip in Glacier National Park was an incredible experience and a trip that, for many reasons, I will remember for a long time. The flowers, the sunsets, the wildlife, the adventure, the companionship - it was all there.

The trip was a return to one of my favorite national parks, and the completion of a classic trek that I have been trying to do for several years. Add a cross-country variation involving a climb over the shoulder of Mt. Kipp and the descent of a glacier to a beautiful lake in a deep cirque unaccessible by trail, and you have the makings of a most spectacular experience!

So it was to my utmost delight to learn that a couple of images from that trip have already been selected to accompany an article in an up-coming issue of a popular magazine. The layout will include my first double-page spread!

Glacier NP is not only a beautiful place to visit, but is rich with history as well. When making your vacation plans for next year, I highly recommend considering it as your destination of choice.

If planning a trip for flowers, I would aim for the last week of July or first week of August. I chose the first week of August and you can see the results! However, flowers were past their prime in many areas that we visited, and I think my preference would be a week sooner.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Shell Rock - Oregon Coast

Along the Cape Arago Highway outside of Charleston is one of the best spots on the Oregon coast to view sea lions - Simpson Reef and Shell Rock. Hundreds of sea lions and otters use this place as a haul-out and can be viewed year-round. The pull-out is located within Cape Arago State Park, about a mile from Shore Acres State Park.

Stellar and California sea lions can be seen here, as well as northern elephant seals and harbor seals. The numbers are quite impressive.

We missed the sea lions at Strawberry Hill and Sea Lion Caves by a couple of weeks, so seeing them here was a real treat. Oh, and we didn't have to endure dark, damp caves and less than pleasent odors!

From a photography perpective, this isn't the best place to photograph the sea lions as they are pretty far away. These images were taken with a 70-200mm lens and 2x teleconverter, to give you an idea. But they sure are fun to watch! I would recommend bringing binoculars for the best viewing.

As a write this, I recall taking images to stitch a panoramic of the area. I'll try to dig that up and post it soon.

Edit: Here is the pano added. Not as nice as hoped, but it may help with perspective. Unfortunately, it cuts off many of the sea lions at the bottom due to the way it crops.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

2011 Calendar

I thought I would share some images that will be appearing in an upcoming 2011 calendar. Both images are from special trips.

The image to the left was taken last year on a backpack to High Divide with my good friend David Crowe. We camped very near this spot and enjoyed views of flowers and peaks from near and far, plus the occasional bear. It was a fun trip that included visits to Seven Lakes Basin and Bogachiel Peak.

The image was taken after sunset, in a flower meadow, laying on the ground, with my camera only inches off the ground. A breeze was present and it took great patience to wait for opportunity - something photographers know all too much about.
The second image was from a special backpack I did with my dad in Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument. The image was taken from Norway Pass during our exit - totally unplanned. The image represents the chaos that is Mt. St. Helens. Though it isn't my favorite image from the trip, I think it works well. Apparently the publisher does too. It's a re-use, having appeared in their 2009 calendar.

Next up: More Oregon Coast!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Cape Perpetua - Tillicum Beach

We continued our journey south from Canon Beach to our next destination - Tillicum Beach. Clouds prevented much photography while visiting lighthouses at Cape Mears and Yaquina Head, but they were fun visits nonetheless.

At Tillicum Beach the late afternoon skies began to show hints that the clouds might burn off, so we ventured off towards Yachats and Cape Perpetua.

Cape Perpetua might be the most scenic stretch of Highway 101 along the Oregon Coast. The views are simply amazing as the road hugs this rugged coastline. After exploring up and down the highway, I settled on the area around Spouting Horn to enjoy sunset. After being in clouds and fog all day, watching the sunset was quite enjoyable and uplifting.

Rain was forecast for the next day, so I was surprised to wake up to mostly clear skies. Through the trees I could see a rainbow beginning to appear to the west in a cloud bank. I grabbed my camera and hastily made my way towards the beach. Witnessing a rainbow over the ocean and at sunrise were both firsts for me. I knew the rainbow signified moisture in the clouds. Little did I know just how much!

The rainbow lasted for a considerable length of time and captivated the interests of more and more people as they awoke and became aware of it.

Eventually all good things must come to an end and this rainbow proved to be no exception. I ventured back to camp where we packed up our belongings and set out on the road again towards Bandon.

The first rain drops began to hit our windshield as we left the campground. Soon we were driving thru a steady rain that would last for the next 5 hours.

We did hike to the Haceta Lighthouse in the rain. Of course, it wasn't open yet so there was no escape from the wind and rain.

A stop at the Sea Lion Caves found the sea lions to be feeding out at sea, having left the cave two weeks prior.

We did manage a tour of Umpqua Lighthouse amid the rain drops, followed by lunch at the wet picnic area before continuing south.

Oh, to see some sun again.