Most of my photos come on our travels, but we can’t travel every weekend. For various reasons, we have been staying closer to home recently. When we can’t travel I try to find good subjects for photography in my local area.
Keystone Lake is just a few miles upstream from Tulsa on the Arkansas River. With Oklahoma subject to periodic droughts, the Keystone Dam is often not very impressive, with just enough water flowing to generate power, but Oklahoma has been pretty wet this year, and there have been very heavy rains upstream, so they are running a lot of water through the dam right now.
We got up early to try and get a photo of the Moon setting over the dam, I had the location planned correctly, but I messed up on the timing. The Moon was setting just as we drove up, and I could not get the camera set up in time to get the shot. Still, we had some interesting light, and there was a strong mist from the dam that developed into a heavy fog. We stayed for a few hours and I took pictures in the changing light. Ren is very understanding and patient with my early morning photo jaunts.
The area below the dam was filled with birds, thousands of them. The Pelicans were passing through on their annual migration. As the sun was rising they began to feed.
As we were leaving we found that most of the flock were on the lake side of the dam. It was hard to tell in the fog but the lake was covered in Pelicans for as far as we could see. This photo only captures a tiny portion of them.
While I did not get the photo I was after, I am still pleased with the photos that I did get.
Scott is having to go into work early today so I am helping him out with his Friday Photo. Hope I do him justice.
When is the best time to go to a National Park like Yosemite? Scott will tell you it is the offseason, such as January, because there are hardly any people, no lines or traffic, and the views you will see are like no other. We visited Yosemite in January 2016 and it opened our eyes to the opportunity we had. I had never seen snow quite like this. There was a wall of snow as we hiked a bit along one of the packed trails. How did John Muir ever hike these snow-covered places? It just blew my mind.
The day Scott showed me this photo, it became one of my favorites. Blue, green, yellow and white are my favorite color combinations. Yes, this lacks the yellow, but it is still one of my favorites. The sky was so crisp, so clear, and so blue! Was it the altitude? Was it the snow? I am not quite sure, but the result is just breathtaking.
We traveled to Yosemite with a close friend and were able to share this experience with her. It was our very first National Park. We had been to National Recreation Areas, but never full blown National Parks. There was a complete world here that I never realized existed because when you think “National Park” you don’t think of cafeterias, lodges, road clearing crew, ect… You think nature, beauty, wild beasts, ect… It was one of my favorite trips; I know it was one of Scott’s because he keeps telling me he wants to go back and live there as a park host for a few years.
The travel that we do is usually not as organized as we would like, but we are improving. We try to make sure Scott is in the right areas at the golden hours so he can shoot some pretty amazing photos, but then you have shots like the blue sky above. He has learned so much since that trip and I just love that he was able to get some amazing photos at such an early time in his career.
Thanks so much for sharing this memory with me.
Every year for my birthday, we take a trip of some sort. In 2015 we hopped down to Houston where we visited four Texas State Parks. 2016 was a spur of the moment Texas History trip to Gonzales and Goilad, Texas. While in 2017, we visited the Ouachita National Forest are hitting many Arkansas State Parks. This year we went on a County Collecting trip and we stayed over night at the Hercules Glades Wilderness Fire Tower within the Mark Twain National Forest in Missouri. It was easy to convince Ren to camp because the weather was going to be beautiful and we would be using the hammocks, she just loves the hammocks. We had built hammock stands so the set up and break down was quick and easy; I think that is why she loves it so much.
This camping area is home to one of the many fire towers within the Mark Twain National Forest. These fire towers are actually stilled used today to help locate fires in the area. You are also able to rent some of the unmanned towers to stay in during the summers. For more information on this, please see https://www.nationalforests.org/blog/nine-questions-about-lookout-towers. We had no idea this was a possibility so we just camped here. The camping in this area is free and we had the area all to ourselves until about 2:00 AM and one hiker that was camped somewhere along the hiking trail.
We were extremely lucky to have such a beautiful, clear night so I was able to take some good night sky photos. The camera I use is a mirrorless Sony A6000; it is light and easy to use. My settings for these photos are ISO 8000, F-stop is 3.5, and I shoot for 15 seconds. I was extremely happy with the outcome of these photos.
Thanks so much for taking a look,
Photo by Scott Fridenberg, taken with a Sony A6000 – Fstop 3.5 – ISO 400 – 1/2000.
I decided that since Scott works so hard at taking photos and processing them, it was time for the world to see all of them, one at a time so you could really enjoy them as much as I do. This all started out as a hobby for him when a friend loaned him a Nikon, but he soon decided he wanted his own camera so he went with a mirrorless Sony A6000.
This is a photo of Bear Creek Lake at the Mississippi River State Park within the Saint Francis National Forest just north of Helena-West Helena, Arkansas. We were on a county grab on November 16-20, 2017, and were enjoying the fall foliage trying to find a route through the St. Francis National Forest when we found this amazing spot. We entered the forest just north of Helena-West Helena along the Big Spring Road. It is a well-maintained dirt-gravel road with trees lining the sides giving it plenty of shade. As you can see, the fall foliage is just breathtaking, giving the road a very rustic view.
This National Forest on Bear Creek Lake has a very interesting surprise, it is one of the locations of a Louisana Purchase Survey Line Marker. It was in this area men traveled through the swampy river flatlands to survey the Louisiana Purchase. Not far from here at the Louisiana Purchase Historic State Park, you can view the National Landmark Survey Marker in Monroe County. If you are ever in that area, you should check it all out.
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Happy Photo Day!