Snowy Flatirons

A highlight of my winter drive into work is the sight of the Flatirons plastered in fresh snow after a storm has passed through. It’s not a sight that usually lasts very long; the Flatirons are steep and a day of sun is normally enough to slough the snow off. Seeing that the skies were meant to clear overnight after fresh snow yesterday, I headed out in the pre-dawn hours to see if there was an image to be made, either from the office or from Chautauqua. A crescent moon provided some illumination.

Flatirons at night in winter

Boulder Flatirons after fresh snow

The snow was still quite fresh, and it wasn’t really all that cold, so I set up with two cameras and ultrawide lenses just past the Chautauqua parking lot. The final image is a stitch of the two composites, each of which is a stack of about 80 30s exposures (ISO 800, f/5.6).

Eclipse no show

For the lunar eclipses in 2014 and 2015 I staked out locations in the Indian Peaks and at the overlook south of Boulder en route to Golden. On both occasions I shot wide angle through the eclipse, ending up with both time lapse footage and a composite image. Those efforts worked out pretty well. For the January 2018 edition I decided to try something different. The moon was going to set over the mountains while still in total eclipse, minutes before dawn. A long telephoto shot from the Lost Gulch Overlook on Flagstaff Mountain looked like it had potential.

My plan, it turned out, was not entirely original. Leaving home at 6am, a line of vehicles snaked up the hairpin bends to the overlook, where cars were parked for a hundred yards along the road! Maybe 50 people were out in the pre-dawn gloom, a fair number of whom sported hefty tripods and serious glass. Of the guest of honor, alas, there was no sign. A bank of low cloud in Boulder Canyon was potentially a scenic addition, but higher clouds completely blocked any view of the moon toward the western horizon. Sunrise didn’t happen either.

In lieu of the eclipse I shot a handful of frames of the peaks peeking through breaks in the clouds, along with some images of the view east to the plains with some low angle light below the clouds.

Peaks from the Lost Gulch Overlook

US 36 heading into Boulder

Boulder

Drove up to Chautauqua this afternoon to see if there was an image of the supermoon rising over the plains. Nothing doing, but I stayed around till twilight and grabbed a frame looking along US36 heading north out of town.

Road to the mountains

Oahu Thanksgiving 2017

Back from a week’s vacation in Hawaii with my wife. We spent some time on the North Shore, where the waves and the surfers (setting up for a World Cup event at the weekend) were both fun to watch. Snorkeling at Hanauma Bay and the botanical gardens at Waimea Valley were other highlights. Not really a photo trip, but I shot some images I’m quite pleased with using the Sony RX100 II.

Sunset Beach on the North Shore

Waimea Valley, Oahu

USS Bowfin, Pearl Harbor, Honolulu

Yukon’s Tombstone Provincial Park

The far north of Canada was in the news today, with the opening of a road (unpaved, there are limits to even the Canadian government’s largesse) between Inuvik and Tuktoyaktuk. The closest I’ve gotten to these outposts is Tombstone Provincial Park, which is near the start of the (also unpaved) Dempster highway that leads across the arctic circle up to Inuvik. It’s truly spectacular country!

Hiker, Grizzly Lake trail, Tombstones

Hiking toward Grizzly Lake, Tombstone Provincial Park

(For a glimpse of the Dempster, check out my brother’s timelapse viseo. No gimbals or fancy mounting equipment here, this is reversed footage from a hacked Canon compact strapped to the rear spoiler of our rental car!)

Mount Hood wilderness

Looking back at images from a late summer visit in 2012 to the Mount Hood wilderness. I have fond memories of this trip. We hiked from the Timberline Lodge across Zigzag canyon to reach the meadows in the Paradise Park area. The wildflower display there was the best I’ve ever seen.

Wildflowers at Paradise Park

Hiking back to the lodge the sunset light on Mount Hood was good.

Sunset

Mount Hood from the Timberline trail

After main years of being closed due to a washout, the Timberline trail that circumnavigates the mountain is now open again. It’s a tempting prospect!

Hiking Upper Muley Twist

Upper Muley Twist is my favorite hike in Capitol Reef National Park. I’ve done it three times now, most recently earlier this year with my brother. The video is a mix of Canon 5D3, Sony RX100 II and DJI Osmo shots. Some color balance issues aside, the Osmo really worked remarkably well despite my almost complete lack of practice ahead of time!

Update: I’ve put up a new Capitol Reef hiking page, with images from three or four trips over the years that I’d never gotten around to processing. There are still hikes in the park I haven’t done, including Hall Creek Narrows (though that’s tough to reach on a day hike) and the slot canyons on the east side.

Chasm Lake

Process of an old slide from 2004… dawn light at Chasm Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park. Sunrise didn’t happen on a return trip with digital equipment, so for now this is the best capture I have of the magical scene.

Chasm Lake, Rocky Mountain National Park