Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Posts Tagged ‘mountain

Mount Katahdin

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I’ve been reading Laura Dassow Walls’s recent biography of Thoreau. Near halfway through comes an account of Thoreau’s 1846 visit to Mount Katahdin, which at 5267 ft. (1605m) is the highest point in the state of Maine: “From Quakish Lake they got their first glimpse of Mount Katahdin*, still twenty miles away, its summit veiled in clouds.”

On June 2nd of this year, driving north on Interstate 95, we took the pullout for a scenic view of the mountain. Unfortunately, as you can see in the photograph, we had the same experience Thoreau originally did, and the summit remained obscured by clouds. Oh well, maybe another time. No clouds obscured my view of some birch trees (Betula papyrifera, I believe) adjacent to the pullout’s parking lot. Given the briskness of the breeze, I used a shutter speed of 1/500 of a second to keep the leaves from blurring yet still let them convey a sense of the wind.

* By a curious coincidence, in the evening on the same day that I updated the draft of this post to include the information about Thoreau, we watched an unrelated documentary I’d taken out of the library. As the introductory credits appeared, we saw that the company that had made the documentary was Katahdin Productions.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

August 4, 2018 at 4:40 AM

Two countries joined by a common smoke

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The morning of August 30, 2017, found us at the Prince of Wales Hotel in Waterton Lakes National Park, Alberta, Canada. You can tell by the first photograph, taken on our balcony, that smoke from forest fires was still with us.

After having breakfast and checking out of the hotel, we drove south toward Glacier National Park, Montana. Along the way I stopped here and there when something caught my photographic fancy. One such stop yielded the second picture, with its pleasant combination of western mountain ash, Sorbus scopulina, and quaking aspens, Populus tremuloides. An advantage of photographing close subjects was the absence of haze.

The last picture, taken 12 minutes later, returns to smoke and offers a distant view of Chief Mountain in Montana.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

January 26, 2018 at 4:37 AM

The sometimes hard life of a subalpine fir

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Glacier National Park in winter, especially at high altitudes, is a hard place. On August 30th I saw the enduring consequences of that harshness on some of these subalpine fir trees, Abies lasiocarpa, at Logan Pass (altitude 6,647 ft.). Beyond them is Pollock Mountain, which sits on the Continental Divide.

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

October 15, 2017 at 4:54 AM

Not rain

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A well-known feature at Utah’s Zion National Park is Weeping Rock, where water seeps out of the upper part of a rocky overhang. When we visited the place last year on October 22nd I got behind the plane of the dripping water and looked outward through it. A slow shutter speed of 1/40 second let the falling drops leave bright trails that contrasted with the wispy clouds visible above the adjacent mountain.

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

March 11, 2017 at 5:08 AM

Clouds hanging low

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Look how the clouds hung low over the mountains at the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area outside Las Vegas on October 25, 2016.

© 2017 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

February 8, 2017 at 5:11 AM

Saguaro slant

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saguaro-colony-on-mountain-slopes-1501

In today’s picture it’s not the saguaro cacti (Carnegiea gigantea) themselves that slant, but the land on which they grow in Tucson Mountain Park. After yesterday’s close-up of a giant saguaro, I felt you should have an overview showing a dense colony of these giant plants. Back on November 7th I thought this was a good way to begin my photo-taking day.

If you’re interested in the craft of photography, you’ll find that point 18 in About My Techniques applies to this image.

© 2016 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 22, 2016 at 5:09 AM

Study Butte

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Terlingua Formations 9769

There’s a little settlement just west of Big Bend National Park called Study Butte, whose first word is pronounced as if it were Stoody. On November 22nd I took this view of the geological formations there, whose strata now remind me a little of the Pancake Rocks in New Zealand.

© 2015 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 29, 2015 at 5:21 AM

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