Driving into Death Valley National Park along California Highway 190, you certainly understand how Death Valley got its name. The brown barren desert landscape is all you can see for miles around. We were headed for “The Ranch at Death Valley”, a self-described casual hotel that would be our home base for the next 6 days. The Ranch turned out to be a convenient centrally located lodge to access the Valley’s most remarkable places to visit. We were excited to finally explore one of the few major National Parks we have never experienced, but we were not at all prepared for the landscape vistas and diversity we were about to encounter.
It is my tradition to pick my favorite images of the year and tell the stories behind them. Reviewing all my photos from the year is always fun. The exercise provides insight on where I have been, the people I have met, and gives me some ideas for resolutions in the new year. I get to relive the experiences and special moments all over again, and I learn a lot. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys photography. You will find the difficult part is selecting only 10 favorites. I spent almost another full year socially distanced at home but managed to enjoy some travel to National Parks at year end. Several of my favorite photos came from these travels, and a few from right around my hometown.
So once again, here are my top ten favorite images of 2021 and the stories behind them.
It was just before sunrise when we drove up to the Fall River Entrance Station of Rocky Mountain National Park. It was one of those crisp Colorado mornings, the dry cool air was so refreshing that we decided to leave the car window open as we headed to Bear Lake Road for our first hike since we arrived in nearby Estes Park, CO.
We stepped from the park path down onto the beach and I thought I just might have stumbled into a scene from the Twilight Zone. The beach scattered with massive driftwood trees resembled images of a pre-historic graveyard. My wife and I looked at each other and almost in unison said, “now we know how this place got its name”. We were at Boneyard Beach on Big Talbot Island, a closely kept secret beach on Florida’s East Coast, just Northeast of Jacksonville.
I was a little apprehensive climbing on the charter bus on a warm June morning in Vancouver, Canada. My wife and I rarely travel in a tour group preferring to take our own path while traveling. . . planning our own days and arranging our own accommodations. Our bus was about to take us to a unique travel experience… especially for us. Just a few minutes away our driver would drop us off at the Rocky Mountaineer Train Station. For the next two days we would see the back-country sights of the Canadian Rockies from the legendary Rocky Mountaineer Train. Continue reading →
For the second year in a row, I participated in a project to “Capture Brevard”, highlighting the lifestyle of the place I call home along the Central East Coast of Florida. Brevard County, also known as the “Space Coast” is the 10th largest county in Florida. Located halfway between Jacksonville and Miami, residents and visitors enjoy 72 miles of beaches, and vast inland waterway lagoons. Of course the Space Coast is known world-wide as the origin of space explorations and rocket launches. Continue reading →
I hope your 2016 was happy and healthy. I left the year feeling truly blessed.
Several years ago, I found selecting my “Top Ten” photos of the year is a great way to relive those special places you visited, remember the people you met, and rediscover a few new things you learned. . . or relearned. Selecting ten favorite photos in years past reflected those images that were most recognized by publications, photo contests, or social media. Don’t get me wrong, I like the recognition as much as anyone. But this year, I decided to share a few of my 2016 photos I personally like where I have a story to tell about the image.
I read somewhere that every photograph has three stories. The story about how you came about to capture the image, the story the photographer intended to tell their viewers, and the story the viewer of the image sees in the image. Obviously, all three stories are not always the same. I will try to convey the experiences and stories behind my favorite 2016 images, but I would love to hear about the story you see in any of the images too!
Perfect view – Indian River, Indian Harbour Beach, FL
One of the most important environmental challenges we face as a nation is the protection of our natural waterways. And in Florida, it doesn’t get any more challenging than restoring the 156 mile long Indian River Lagoon on Florida’s East coast. The Indian River Lagoon is one of North America’s most diverse estuaries with more than 4000 species of plants and animals, including 35 that are listed as threatened or endangered — more than any other estuary in North America. Continue reading →