New Images Autumn North Cascades

New Images Autumn North Cascades

Liberty Bell Mountain North Cascades #64469 New Images Autumn North CascadesLiberty Bell Mountains, North Cascades  #64469  Purchase

My final group of images from 2018 is now online and ready for viewing. As with the past several new releases I have added a selection of highlights to the New Images Gallery. You can see even more by visiting the Washington Gallery or searching by keyword/location.

This past year I have been very fortunate to have been able to visit some exciting new locations in the Midwest and Appalachian Mountains. However, it somehow seems fitting that the year is finishing up with a successful fall trip on my home turf. Washington Pass and Rainy Pass along North Cascades Highway are two of the most scenic sections of the state. This area holds many fond memories for me, so I’ll jump at any chance I can get to photograph there. On this most recent visit in early October I was lucky to have both fresh snowfall and sub-alpine larches at their peak color.

Liberty Bell Mountain North Cascades #64568 New Images Autumn North CascadesLiberty Bell Mountain from Washington Pass Overlook  #64568  Purchase

The other location included in this set is even closer to home, Heather Meadows Recreation Area. Just an hour up the road, I’ve been their many dozens of times, for photography, skiing, and hiking. This area of easy access can be very crowded in every season. So on this occasion I hiked the Ptarmigan Ridge trail on a quiet Monday in spectacular fall weather. The next morning I photographed near the ski area just as a few clouds drifted in to herald a change of weather.

Alpine Larches North Cascades #64608  New Images Autumn North CascadesSub-alpine Larches North Cascades  #64608  Purchase

Cutthroat Pass Larches, North Cascades #64521 New Images Autumn North CascadesBlack Peak and sub-alpine larches, North Cascades  #64521  Purchase

Table Mountain North Cascades Washington #64649 New Images Autumn North CascadesHeather Meadows Recreation Area #64649  Purchase

Heather Meadows in autumn North Cascades #64642 New Images Autumn North CascadesTable Mountain, Heather Meadows Recreation Area  #64642  Purchase

 

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Whatcom Peak North Cascades National Park

Whatcom Peak North Cascades National ParkWhatcom Peak North Cascades National Park  #61501  Purchase

Here are a few more images from last year’s trip to Whatcom Pass in North Cascades National Park. After going through my files recently I noticed that these images were still in the “sketching” phase of processing. Sometimes looking back at images over time sheds new light on interpreting the feel of subject matters.

To read more about this special place read my earlier post on Whatcom Pass and Tapto Lakes. Now I’m off for several day photographing back at Washington Pass along North Cascades Highway.

Whatcom Peak North Cascades National ParkWhatcom Peak North Cascades National Park  #61502  Purchase

Whatcom Peak North Cascades National ParkWhatcom Peak North Cascades National Park  #61515  Purchase

 

 

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Skagit Valley Daffodil Photography

Skagit Valley Daffodil Photography, WashingtonSkagit Valley Daffodils #61987b  Purchase

One of my spring rituals is to make a trip down to the Skagit Valley to photograph the Daffodil and tulip fields. After months of grey rainy weather it’s always a treat to see such bursts of color. From the end of March though the first week or so of April daffodils are the star attraction. Depending on the weather, tulips begin to bloom around the second week of April. Of course the fields also make great subjects for photography. Since the fields change location every year it’s worth scouting out in advance where the best compositions may be.

Skagit Valley Daffodil Photography, WashingtonSkagit Valley Daffodils #61960b  Purchase

Photographing daffodils can be more difficult than photographing tulips. Mostly this is due to the fact that daffodils bloom earlier in the season. In late March the weather is still winter-like with rain and cold winds. Daffodil blossoms stand higher and on thinner stalks than tulips, so they move easily in the slightest of breezes. Meaning if you’re lucky enough to have good light you may be hampered by windy conditions.

If there is a breeze present you may need to resort to techniques such as focus stacking to achieve the necessary depth of field while using a faster shutter speed. Photographing in lower light conditions will only compound these issues. Of course it should go without saying that a good tripod is a necessity here. Another very helpful item I’m never without is a remote to trip the shutter while the mirror is locked up.

Photographers know that it pays to get up before dawn in order to take advantage of blue hour and sunrise light. Here in the Skagit Valley, another good reason to arrive early is to beat the crowds. On a sunny weekend the roads will be gridlocked like Seattle on a Friday afternoon. At the height of the bloom it may seem like everyone on the entire West Coast is here to get a photo of their loved ones in the tulip fields! So go early, and preferably on a weekday.

Other Skagit Valley Daffodil Photography Subjects

Aside from photographing Skagit Valley daffodil fields and tulips, the lower Skagit Valley also boasts some other worthwhile attractions. Foremost among these are the snow geese and trumpeter swans. Every winter through early spring these beautiful white birds come to the fields to rest and feed before resuming their long journey north. They move among the fields every day, so it can be a challenge to photograph them in the best location. If you plan on photographing these birds please refrain from alarming them. While it’s a magnificent sight to see an entire flock in flight, it also cause undo stress on them.

Snow Geese Skagit Valley WashingtonSkagit Valley Snow Geese #59742  Purchase

Finally, visit to the Skagit Valley wouldn’t be complete without stopping by LaConner, a self-described artist enclave and boater’s paradise. Aside from browsing the quaint shops and having a bite to eat, photographers can come away with some great travel photos from this picturesque town. Hint, photograph the red bridge and sailboats in evening light!

Skagit Valley Daffodil Photography, WashingtonSkagit Valley Daffodils #61982b  Purchase

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