Photographs by Frank

11 October 2018

2018 Road Trip (Part 7) — Natural Bridges & Hovenweep National Monuments

Filed under: Landscapes,Road Trips — Frank @ 9:15 PM

On the drive from Capitol Reef NP to Hovenweep National Monument we made a brief stop at Natural Bridges National Monument to view the sights from the rim. Between the altitudes and the knees, the steep hike to the bottom of the canyon for close up views of the bridges was not on the agenda.

Natural Bridges

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Natural Bridges 01
Natural Bridges 01
Natural Bridges 02
Natural Bridges 02
Natural Bridges 03
Natural Bridges 03
Natural Bridges 04
Natural Bridges 04
Natural Bridges 05
Natural Bridges 05

The drive from Capitol Reef in south central Utah to Hovenweep National Monument on the Utah- Colorado border passes through some of the most desolate and fantastic terrain I have even experienced, we did not stop to make any photographs… we were pressed for time and for places to safely pull the camper off the roadside. A return trip is certainly warranted.

The remote Hovenweep National Monument is well worth the trip to this out of the way spot. It is not as “built up” as the busier Mesa Verde National Park, The ruins are not as large or as extensive as in Mesa Verde but they are very accessible and interesting.

Hovenweep

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Hovenweep 01
Hovenweep 01
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Hovenweep 11
Hovenweep 12
Hovenweep 12

< Part 6Part 8>

2018 Road Trip (Part 6) — Capitol Reef National Park

Filed under: Landscapes,Road Trips — Frank @ 9:14 PM

After the (photographically) tough conditions at Bryce, Capitol Reef National Park was a cake walk. The light (especially in the evening) was perfectly directed and the skies had wonderful clouds. In addition to driving the roads, we hiked in both of the accessible side canyons, Grand Wash and Capitol Gorge.

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Capitol Reef 01
Capitol Reef 01
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Capitol Reef 05
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Capitol Reef 18
Capitol Reef 18

< Part 5Part 7>

2018 Road Trip (Part 5) — Bryce Canyon National Park

Filed under: Landscapes,Road Trips — Frank @ 9:14 PM

Our next stop and our first in southern Utah was Bryce National Park. This park was tough for me photographically*. It was still an interesting place to see in person after seeing many, many photographs.

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Bryce Canyon 01
Bryce Canyon 01
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Bryce Canyon 02
Bryce Canyon 03
Bryce Canyon 03
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Bryce Canyon 04
Bryce Canyon 05
Bryce Canyon 05
Bryce Canyon 06
Bryce Canyon 06
Bryce Canyon 07
Bryce Canyon 07
Bryce Canyon 08
Bryce Canyon 08
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Bryce Canyon 11
Bryce Canyon 11
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Bryce Canyon 13
Bryce Canyon 14
Bryce Canyon 14
Bryce Canyon 15
Bryce Canyon 15
Bryce Canyon 16
Bryce Canyon 16
Bryce Canyon 17
Bryce Canyon 17
Bryce Canyon 18
Bryce Canyon 18

* The light was harsh most of the time we were there and the light in much of the canyon (which was accessible without a long steep hike) faded early, well before sunset.


< Part 4Part 6>

2018 Road Trip (Part 4) — Sunset Crater & Wupatki National Monuments

Filed under: Landscapes,Road Trips — Frank @ 9:14 PM

Heading north from Flagstaff after our raft trip, we did not go far (maybe twenty-five miles) before stopping at the two adjacent national monuments. Sunset Crater preserves some interested and geologically recent, volcanic features. The weather the morning we were there was drab and rainy… not very good for photography of dark lava, but it was interesting none-the-less. The weather improved as the day progressed and we moved on to Wupatki which preserves a number of early Native American ruins.

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Sunset Crater 01
Sunset Crater 01
Sunset Crater 02
Sunset Crater 02
Sunset Crater 03
Sunset Crater  03
Sunset Crater 04
Sunset Crater 04
Wupatki 01
Wupatki 01
Wupatki 02
Wupatki 02
Wupatki 03
Wupatki 03
Wupatki 04
Wupatki 04

< Part 3Part 5 >

2018 Road Trip (Part 3) — Grand Canyon Raft Trip

Filed under: Landscapes,Road Trips — Frank @ 9:13 PM

The genesis of this road trip began about three years ago, when Bernice Lewis (a singer-songwriter from Williamstown, MA) mentioned at the end of a concert, that she was organizing a raft trip down the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon. We did not think twice before saying “Sign us up!”.

The trip had a musical flavor. We traveled with guitars, ukuleles and other makers of joyful noise. Music was made each evening and a few times at stops during the day. Songs were sung most of the time and more than a few verses of, mostly doggerel, lyrics were composed while floating the river.

The rafts, guides, etc. were provided by Arizona Rafting Adventures (AZRA) out of Flagstaff, AZ. The two rafts were large motorized craft. They accommodated 29 folks, including the guides, and everything we needed (or wanted) for ten days.

One thing the rafts were not… dry! We were damp (or soaked) for most of the day while on the river. All part of the adventure!

Our guides (Jeb, Dennis, Kelly and Bert) kept us safe. entertained. educated and well fed. Thank you all.

The service provided by AZRA and our guides was first-rate. Highly recommended.

During they day, while on the water, I made relatively few photographs. The light was poor (harsh and high) and my little cameras batteries gave out some time on day four. Most of my “river photos” were made in camp, either early-ish in the morning or late in the afternoon, as we made camp for the night. The real “golden hour” light (just after sunrise or just before sunset) that landscape photographers love never reaches to the river st the bottom of a canyon. Although I knew this going in, it still took some getting used to when actually there at the bottom of the canyon.

I was most interested in making photographs showing the river in the main canyon…

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River Trip Main Canyon 01
River Trip Main Canyon 01
River Trip Main Canyon 02
River Trip Main Canyon 02
River Trip Main Canyon 03
River Trip Main Canyon 03
River Trip Main Canyon 04
River Trip Main Canyon 04
River Trip Main Canyon 05
River Trip Main Canyon 05
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River Trip Main Canyon 06
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River Trip Main Canyon 07
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River Trip Main Canyon 08
River Trip Main Canyon 09
River Trip Main Canyon 09
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River Trip Main Canyon 10
River Trip Main Canyon 11
River Trip Main Canyon 11
River Trip Main Canyon 12
River Trip Main Canyon 12

Some days, we made mid-day stops to hike side canyons…

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River Trip Side Canyons 01
River Trip Side Canyons 01
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River Trip Side Canyons 02
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River Trip Side Canyons 08
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River Trip Side Canyons 09
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River Trip Side Canyons 10

Sometimes the light at the “local rim” was too interesting to pass up…

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River Trip (Looking Up) 01
River Trip (Looking Up) 01
River Trip (Looking Up) 02
River Trip (Looking Up) 02
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River Trip (Looking Up) 03
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River Trip (Looking Up) 04
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River Trip (Looking Up) 05
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River Trip (Looking Up) 07
River Trip (Looking Up) 07
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River Trip (Looking Up) 08
River Trip (Looking Up) 09
River Trip (Looking Up) 09

Here are some photos I made while actually on the rafts….

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River Trip (from rafts) 01
River Trip (from rafts) 01
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River Trip (from rafts) 02
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River Trip (from rafts) 03
River Trip (from rafts) 04
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River Trip (from rafts) 06
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River Trip (from rafts) 10
River Trip (from rafts) 11
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River Trip (from rafts) 12
River Trip (from rafts) 12

Even though the colors in the canyon border on fantastical, I made some black and white photos…

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River Trip (Black and White) 01
River Trip (Black and White) 01
River Trip (Black and White) 02
River Trip (Black and White) 02
River Trip (Black and White) 03
River Trip (Black and White) 03
River Trip (Black and White) 04
River Trip (Black and White) 04
River Trip (Black and White) 05
River Trip (Black and White) 05
River Trip (Black and White) 06
River Trip (Black and White) 06
River Trip (Black and White) 07
River Trip (Black and White) 07
River Trip (Black and White) 08
River Trip (Black and White) 08
River Trip (Black and White) 09
River Trip (Black and White) 09

< Part 2Part 4 >

2018 Road Trip (Part 2) — North Rim of the Grand Canyon

Filed under: Landscapes,Road Trips — Frank @ 9:13 PM

While we were at the North Rim, we camped at the Demotte Campground, a nice quiet spot, in Kaibab National Forest, about 20 miles north of the park entrance. Most mornings we headed into the park early and stayed until the light faded. One day we explored the rim overlooks accessible via the National Forest roads.

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North Rim 01
North Rim 01
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North Rim 12

< Part 1Part 3 >

2018 Road Trip (Part 1) — Introduction / Canyon de Chelly

Filed under: Landscapes,Road Trips — Frank @ 9:12 PM

We are back from our 2018 road trip!

We headed west on Labor Day and arrived home on Sunday… five weeks and 6940 miles total. We pulled our little teardrop camper and spent most nights camping.

The centerpiece of the trip was the Grand Canyon. We spent five days at the North Rim and then ten days rafting the Colorado River from Lee’s Ferry to Diamond Creek (more about this in another post). Both before and after the Grand Canyon, we stopped at a number of other national parks and monuments.

On the way west, we spent four  days (three nights) on the interstate system before hitting the local roads somewhere west of Albuquerque, NM and heading for Canyon de Chelly National Monument along the Arizona-New Mexico border in the four corners area.

We arrived at Canyon de Chelly in the late afternoon and camped there for two nights. This was our standard  operating mode for most stops, giving me two late afternoons/evenings and two mornings for photography when the sun is low(ish) in the sky.

From Canyon de Chelly, we headed to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon where we spent four nights camped in the National Forest campground just north of the park. From the North Rim, we headed to Flagstaff (and one night in a motel) to meet up with the folks we would be rafting with.

Early the next morning (15 Sept.) we were on the AZRA* bus headed for the put-in at Lee’s Ferry. We spent the next ten days floating the river and being well tended to by the guides. The take-out was on the morning of the 24th. After another bus ride (back to Flagstaff) and another night in a motel (with hot showers!), we were ready for the rest of our trip.

We did not get too far on the first day, post-raft trip… only to Sunset Crater and Wupatki National Monuments, twenty or twenty-five miles north of Flagstaff, where we camped for one night.

From there we headed for Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah (for two nights) then, with a quick daytime stop at Escalante Petrified Forest State Park, to Capitol Reef National Park (two nights). Next it was on to Hovenweep National Monument (two nights) with another quick stop at Natural Bridges National Monument on the way. After Hovenweep we headed to Mesa Verde National Park (two nights) and Great Sand Dunes National Park (one night) in southwestern Colorado, before deciding to find Interstate 70 and head home.

Of course, I took some photographs along the way….  3263 exposures total to be exact! I have spent much time since we returned home editing this mass down to 495 frames (i.e. 15% of the total) which I “developed”. I then made a second pass at editing and have 182 photos (5.6% of the total) which will appear here on the blog. Hopefully, this is a small enough number that no one will fall asleep during the slide show!

Thus, to begin, here are the photos from Canyon de Chelly; more (from other places) will follow in subsequent posts.

Color Work

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Canyon de Chelly 01
Canyon de Chelly 01
Canyon de Chelly 02
Canyon de Chelly 02
Canyon de Chelly 04
Canyon de Chelly 04
Canyon de Chelly 05
Canyon de Chelly 05
Canyon de Chelly 06
Canyon de Chelly 06
Canyon de Chelly 07
Canyon de Chelly 07
Canyon de Chelly 08
Canyon de Chelly 08
Canyon de Chelly 09
Canyon de Chelly 09
Canyon de Chelly 10
Canyon de Chelly 10

Black and White Work

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Canyon de Chelly 11
Canyon de Chelly 11
Canyon de Chelly 12
Canyon de Chelly 12
Canyon de Chelly 13
Canyon de Chelly 13
Canyon de Chelly 14
Canyon de Chelly 14
Canyon de Chelly 15
Canyon de Chelly 15
Canyon de Chelly 16
Canyon de Chelly 16
Canyon de Chelly 17
Canyon de Chelly 17
Canyon de Chelly 18
Canyon de Chelly 18

*AZRA — Arizona Rafting Adventures (more about them in a later post)


Part 2 >

22 August 2018

A Jaunt in the “Neighborhood”

This afternoon, I headed out on a walk down Hattie Brown Road, just to see what was up. I had not been out that way in probably almost a month. Weather-wise there were broken clouds and the temperature in the mid-70’s. There was also a nice breeze blowing… nice because it kept the mosquitoes down.

As I left the house, I noticed a small (a couple of dozen individuals) feeding swarm of darners over the yard. Feeding swarms are large congregations (dozens to hundreds of individuals) of big dragonflies (usually a mix of darner species) that gather over open spaces to feed on small flying insects. Feeding swarms form most often in late summer and in the late afternoon. I paused only briefly to watch the swarm before driving down to the bridge.

As I walked out Hattie Brown Road, the sun kept peaking out of the clouds and I saw both female autumn meadowhawks and spreadwings in some of the patches of sunlight along the road. I also saw an occasional darner cruising the road well above head height.

When I reached the beaver pond, the birds took noticed. A crow perched high in a nearby tree, being a social bird, began to call loudly announcing my presence to its compatriots. A great blue heron, being a solitary sort, silently took flight from its fishing spot near the road and headed to the other side of the pond.

As I arrived at the pond, I noticed a large dark cloud come over the ridge to the west and within a minute or two it began to rain lightly. Unsurprisingly, there were no odes to be seen.  Since there was only gray sky to the west and the patches of blue to the east were rapidly receding.  I decided to head back towards the truck without dallying. It rained lightly the entire walk back.

Of course, just as I arrived back at the truck the sun began to reappear and after a short interval the rain stopped.

Since the weather was looking better, I stopped at the road into the Harris Center property along Brimstone Corner Road rather than heading directly home. Parking near the gate, I walked down this road as far as the beaver dam and observed small numbers of the same odes as I saw on Hattie Brown Road. There were a couple of darners patrolling the road, a few spreadwings in sunny spots along the road and a couple of female meadowhawks at the log landing. I saw no odes out over the beaver pond itself.

Eventually, I lost the nice light as the sun disappeared over the ridge to the west. Thus, I headed back up the hill to the truck and arrived back home at 6:30, a bit more than two hours after I departed. The feeding swarm in the yard was gone.

As you might expect, I took a few photos while I was out!

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Spreadwing #1
Spreadwing #1
Wildflower
Wildflower
Autumn Meadowhawk (female)
Autumn Meadowhawk (female)
Grass Seedhead
Grass Seedhead
Toadstool
Toadstool
Spreadwing #2
Spreadwing #2

 

18 August 2018

White Clapboard — Winter Light

Filed under: Landscapes,Winter — Tags: — Frank @ 7:00 PM

Recently. I have been working on a physical book the idea for which has been rolling around in my cranium for some time.

Back in the winter of 2016/2017 I spent some time photographing meeting houses and churches in the general “neighborhood”. I ended up with almost one hundred processed, finished photographs.

My first thought was to put together a press printed book, containing three or four dozen photos total. However, the project stalled at the photo editing stage. I simply could not cull the set of photographs down from one hundred to forty-ish. Every time I tried, I ended up with a different subset. I put prints in a folder and put the project aside in frustration.

A month or so ago, one of my photo friends* suggested that selecting a smaller number of photos and making a shorter book might actually be easier. Lo-and-behold, she was right!

I ended up with a dozen photos that I have sequenced and printed four to a 13″x19″ sheet. I have printed four set of folios on some very nice two-sided matte paper. Now all I have to do is decide on the covers and sew the covers and folios together. The decision is always harder than the sewing!

This morning, as an experiment, I spent a bit of time putting together an ebook version (as a pdf file) of this project.  Here is a link to the book which is titled “White Clapboard — Winter Light“.

The ebook is best viewed by downloading the pdf file and opening it in Acrobat Viewer rather than just clicking on the link and viewing it in your browser.**

What do you think?


* We are a group of about ten photographers who meet on an irregular basis to discuss “projects and objects”… that is, our creative processes and the prints that result.

** Opening the file in most browsers will display the book one page at a time. This is OK. However, Adobe’s Acrobat Viewer will display the book as two page spreads, as I designed it.

Morning Visitor

Filed under: Birds,Monadnock Region,Summer,The Yard,Wildlife — Tags: — Frank @ 9:59 AM

One the the large oak trees down by the road has a large dead branch that overlooks Joan’s vegetable garden. Semi-regularly we see birds of prey, usually hawks sitting in this branch.

This morning, while eating breakfast, Joan noticed a hawk perched in “the branch”. I made a few exposures from the driveway before it decided to head off.

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Hawk #1
Hawk #1
Hawk #2
Hawk #2

 

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