Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography


with 25 comments

4745* is what the car’s trip odometer read when we reached home on June 15th, the 22nd day of traveling generally NNW from Austin and then back again by a different route. In the weeks ahead you’ll see photographs from this latest trip.

We begin today with a dramatic image from Rocky Mountain National Park. You can see that on June 5th the mountains still had a fair amount of snow on them. I underexposed the photograph by 3 f/stops to keep the sun under control.

And here’s a second picture that gives you a better look at one of the snow-covered mountains in that area:

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* Coincidentally, that’s about the same mileage we racked up on the four-week February–March New Zealand trip, pictures from which you were still seeing as recently as the last post.

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

June 20, 2017 at 4:55 AM

25 Responses

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  1. South African table mountain would look stunning if it had such flakes…..looks good


    June 20, 2017 at 5:31 AM

    • I’d be happy to see Table Mountain even without any snow. I’ve never been to any part of Africa but hope to make it one of these days.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 20, 2017 at 7:53 AM

  2. You do like your long road-trips don’t you! Looking forward to seeing where you take us this time 🙂


    June 20, 2017 at 8:58 AM

    • You’ve done some pretty hard touring yourself, so much so that you have a blog devoted to it:


      These past three years have been our “travelingest” in a long time. Driving long distances, checking in and out of hotels, trekking about in the heat and at high altitudes—all those things are wearisome, but they’re the costs for seeing so many scenic places. This time we hit two states that were new to both of us: Nebraska and South Dakota. Pictures will of course be coming your way.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 20, 2017 at 9:24 AM

      • I think we are almost over our wanderlust. OH not keen on going anywhere any more, he’s all for staying at home now. I still fancy a few more adventures, but I know what you mean about the weariness of travelling.


        June 20, 2017 at 9:43 AM

        • As wearying as travel can be, so far I’m still with you in wanting more. Here’s to sights yet unseen!

          Steve Schwartzman

          June 20, 2017 at 9:52 AM

  3. Beautiful mountain there 🙂


    June 20, 2017 at 9:59 AM

  4. So you went out west too! We did the NP tour — 9 parks in 10 days. Just got back. Fabulous camping and hiking and kids got snow for their summer vacay (all they wished for).

    Gorgeous shot, and I know what you mean on the sun under-exposure. It’s brutal out there.


    June 20, 2017 at 6:18 PM

    • PS – our odometer was 4-thousand-something too leaving Houston. More than 9K now.


      June 20, 2017 at 6:19 PM

      • So we drove similar distances, but your average per day is much higher.

        Steve Schwartzman

        June 20, 2017 at 7:47 PM

        • Well, there were the two days up and two days back that I didn’t count. Heck — it’s a whole day’s drive just to get out of Texas! Was a splendid road trip with a view.


          June 20, 2017 at 7:51 PM

          • Glad you had a splendid trip. I know what you mean about that day spent getting out of Texas. We’ve had to contend with it plenty of times. Twice we’ve used Lubbock to break things up because we have friends there.

            Steve Schwartzman

            June 20, 2017 at 7:55 PM

    • Our trip took us (in chronological order) through Lubbock, Amarillo, western Nebraska, western South Dakota, eastern Wyoming, Denver, Colorado Springs, Great Sand Dunes, Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Carlsbad, and Monahans. We hit 4 national parks and more than that many national monuments.

      I’ll look forward to seeing your take on the places you visited.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 20, 2017 at 7:52 PM

      • Great itinerary, Steve! The Dakotas are still on my short lost.

        I’m not sure how much I’m looking forward to posting on the travels. Already have it sectioned into ten posts to keep them relatively short (under 1,000 words, 10 pics each). I’m not a daily poster — once per week is it — and I do want to enjoy the summer.

        States for us were NM, AR, CO, UT, WY, and ID. Mesa Verde, Grand Canyon, Zion, Bryce, Capitol Reef, Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, Arches and Canyonland. EPIC. Still reeling and desperately want to go back. Houston and I have a dying relationship, I’m afraid.


        June 20, 2017 at 8:05 PM

  5. The way you under-exposed this image really makes for drama.


    June 21, 2017 at 8:50 AM

    • That’s what I hoped for. I dialed the exposure compensation down as low as it would go with automatic exposure, which was 3.33 f/stops, to keep the sun from blowing out the highlights. In processing the image later, I brightened the mountains a little to bring them back closer to the way they looked in reality, before the heavy underexposure of the whole image. I’d experimented with similar underexposure on the California trip last fall


      so I immediately thought of using the technique again here.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 21, 2017 at 8:59 AM

  6. Those mountains really are beautiful. I envy your ability to wander among such gorgeous sites — and sights.


    June 22, 2017 at 4:57 AM

  7. Simply stunning.


    June 22, 2017 at 8:02 AM

    • We were glad to catch the mountains while they still had snow on them—but after the roads had become completely free of snow.

      Steve Schwartzman

      June 22, 2017 at 9:29 AM

  8. OOOO ahhhhhhh!


    July 9, 2017 at 4:06 PM

    • On each of the six days we were in Colorado we saw snow-covered mountain, sometimes in the distance and other times quite close. What a difference from central Texas.

      Steve Schwartzman

      July 9, 2017 at 4:10 PM

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