How I spent my summer vacation! Volume 2…

In my last post, I asked for discussion about the concept of vacations for people who are retired. One of my friends (thanks Tom!) suggested that for retirees, every day is Saturday and it’s not a vacation – it’s a lifestyle. Of course, my good friend has always been a profound individual. I like this idea very much and embrace it, but I’m not gonna change the title of this series. Sorry, my friend.

Volume 2 is sub-titled ‘the Mt. Rainier drive by.’ My lovely bride and I attended a very important birthday party that morning and didn’t get to Mt. Rainier National Park until very late in the afternoon. We didn’t stay very long, but will make more time on a future trip.¬†We approached the Park from Yakima WA and saw some beautiful views.

Taken from a view point on WA 12.

This was a popular spot. We took some pictures for a family in a big RV and they reciprocated. Thanks for not cutting our feet off!

Our objective was the Ohanapecosh Visitor’s Center at the Stevens Canyon Entrance (on WA 123, the southeast corner of Mt. Rainier National Park). We arrived just before closing and got the stamp in our U.S. Parks Passport. The views on the road were beautiful.

We knew we had found the right place!

I couldn’t pass up a sunburst shot through the trees! I’m just happy it came out as I envisioned it.

We continued to our stop for the night. The next morning we loaded up and got onto U.S. 101 on the east side of the Olympic Peninsula. This section of Highway 101 parallels a portion of the Hood Canal and Dabob Bay. Again, stunning views and a bonus for us!

Low tide in the Canal made for lots of beach, but the flowers along the Highway were beautiful!

Bonus! Whose heart doesn’t race when they encounter a Bald Eagle in the wild? This one was a little far off, but I tried for the shot anyway.

The engineer in me made me stop and make an image of this bridge. We had passed several of these and I decided to stop for this one. I love the textures from the moss or mold on the concrete.

Always remember: The best scenic turnouts are clearly designated by highway signs reading NO STOPPING ANYTIME.

Enjoy – PHOTOROGR

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How I spent my summer vacation! Volume 1…

Now that my lovely bride has joined me in retirement, we repeatedly ask ourselves a couple questions. First, do we really need an alarm tomorrow? (The answer is generally a resounding no!) Second, if one is not taking time away from a job or other commitment, does one get to call it a ‘vacation’? (So far, we haven’t resolved this question.)

Since we haven’t resolved the second question, I decided to go ahead and call the coming series ‘How I spent my summer vacation!’ to help you all relate. In early July, my lovely bride and I venture north to see our grandson and celebrate his birthday (he turned 5 this year). We have been incorporating vacation-like activities into this annual trip, making it lots more fun. As part of our trip this year, we ventured into the Palouse Region in southeast Washington – a haven for photographers. Early July is not the best time to visit the Palouse for pictures, so we did the best we could and are planning to return during a more scenic time. (For more information on the Palouse Region and the photo opportunities there, visit the Pullman Chamber of Commerce website, http://www.pullmanchamber.com, or ¬†facebook.com/PicturePerfectPalouse.)

We enjoyed our brief visit and only saw a small part of the region, but came away with a few fun pictures.

Enjoy – PHOTOROGR

Located in the southwest corner of the Palouse Region, along the Snake River in Palouse Falls State Park, Palouse Falls offer a beautiful view.

This windmill was just over a ridge and has obviously seen better days.

The panoramic views are simply fantastic. The dust on the left of this image is actually a tractor preparing the land for the next crop.

Rolling along one of the many dirt roads in the area and marveling at the spring Wheat almost ready for harvest, we saw a couple dark spots. As we got closer, we recognized those ears. This doe was very accommodating as I parked and got out the camera.

Not one of the iconic barns in the region, but this one has character.

PS Challenge – August 27, 2017

I’m slowly working my way through my images from Yosemite National Park. I tackled some of the images from our trip on the Tioga Pass Road, crossing the Tuolumne Meadows, last Saturday. There weren’t as many people in that part of the Park compared to the Yosemite Valley, but the road had plenty of traffic and parking was a bit of a challenge. The smoke was much less, too.

This image is Lembert Dome, and I made the image looking northeast in the early afternoon. I blended the zero exposure and underexposed RAW format images in Adobe Camera Raw to bring out the sky, and applied a filter in Nik ColorEfex.

Enjoy – PHOTOROGR

PS Challenge – August 26, 2017

It’s been too long since I posted, but I have an excuse. My lovely bride and I recently celebrated our 40th wedding anniversary and we took a trip to Yosemite National Park to celebrate. We timed the trip around a Night Photography Workshop I was taking. I hadn’t been to Yosemite since I was 2 years old, so that trip didn’t really count for me.

We had a wonderful trip and, except for the smoke from a fire at the south end of the Park, enjoyed the grandeur and beauty. Picture taking was a challenge, but I think I got some good stuff – I’m just beginning to process the images.

Today’s PS Challenge image comes from the Merced River and was taken at dawn, the last shooting of the workshop. The smoke gave the sky an orange cast, and I loved how it colored the water of the river.

Enjoy – PHOTOROGR

PS Challenge – August 7, 2017

Today’s PS Challenge image comes from the Kinney Reservoir, taken a couple weeks ago on my adventure up CA 4 to Ebbett’s Pass.

As usual, I bracketed exposures, merged and toned in Adobe Camera Raw, then edited in PhotoShop with a Nik Color Efex filter. The image was made mid-day, just after lunch.

Enjoy – PHOTOROGR

PS Challenge – July 29, 2017

I drove up to Reno yesterday to have dinner with an old friend. On my way home, the clouds to the east were just gorgeous so I stopped at the Bellevue interchange (I-580 along Washoe Lake) to take pictures. This image was made looking northeast towards Reno, which was behind me as I was driving.

I merged two exposures in Adobe Camera Raw, processed in PhotoShop with On1 Photo RAW and Nik Color Efex filters. Yes, my Nik filters still work!

Enjoy – PHOTOROGR

PS Challenge – July 22, 2017

Today’s PS Challenge image comes from the edge of the Desolation Wilderness, along the Pyramid Creek Trail. I was out the other day scouting photo locations – scouting because the fires near Yosemite National Park are covering our area with smoke. I tried some things but had very low expectations due to the smoky conditions. A couple images surprised me and I was able to make something useful of them.

The waterfall in the background is Horsetail Falls, easily accessible from US 50 on the west side of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Enjoy – PHOTOROGR