Alaska Walkabouts

The adventures of an Alaska Wildlife and Nature Photographer.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Out in a Blaze of Glory


Wild Highbush Cranberries. I made sure some golden Devils Club leaves would be visible in the background. Shot with my 105mm Micro Nikkor close up lens.


Another summer is gone, autumn is in full force and Southcentral Alaska just entered a very brief but beautiful time of year when the forests go out in a blaze of glory. As a photographic subject I find this grand change to be very challenging indeed. What looks so good in person usually looks just terrible in a photo. I guess it is just too grand to be limited to such a confining view. I do a lot of hiking around and it is quite rare for me to even make an attempt anymore but once in a while something catches my eye. Like the cranberries above. I hiked by them on the Homestead Trail near McHugh Creek and they were very pretty but I was feel lazy so I kept going up the trail. But then I decided I needed to at least make the attempt and so I went back and did some shooting. I was pleased with the results this time.




A proud bull moose takes a break from fighting and mating with the ladies. Note the broken tine dangling from his antler and the missing one by his left ear. The bulls really get into the fighting and can actually kill each other and in very rare cases can even permanently lock horns and then starve to death.




During Autumn the wildlife are in their prime as well. They all have their new winter coats and are fat and ready for the long cold winter ahead. I always look forward to prowling the forests with my camera in my arms and my dog by my side as we hunt for giant bull moose and anything else we can find. Moose are certainly the most common animal to run into in my area but I often see grizzly tracks and although I have failed to find any of them so far, one day I may get my wish.


Four Dall Sheep rams leave me in the dust high on a mountainside in the Chugach Range above McHugh Creek. Unlike the moose which mate in September and October, these guys don't enter the rut until December.





During Autumn the wildlife are in their prime as well. They all have their new winter coats and are fat and ready for the long cold winter ahead. I always look forward to prowling the forests with my camera in my arms and my dog by my side as we hunt for giant bull moose and anything else we can find. Moose are certainly the most common animal to run into in my area but I often see grizzly tracks and although I have failed to find any of them so far, one day I may get my wish.



Devil's Club are an aptly-named nuisance around here but in the fall they turn into gold. I took this shot with my 400mm lens which kept me from having to go into the thorny things. I was hiking up the trail and I notice the low morning sunlight back lighting them through the tall Cottonwood Trees.


My little shadow Bryn. I took this shot today on gorgeous walk along the Potter Creek Trail. I take the bells off when we are looking for wildlife. Bryn just turned 12 and he is starting to suffer a bit from arthritis. I give him Rimadyl when I know we are going for a walk and I need to just keep him moving so he stays strong. Me too!

 
A stand of Aspen that I found today along the Potter Creek Trail. I went in with my 14mm lens, rested it on a log, and shot three bracketed shots 2 f stops apart then created an HDR image in Photomatix Pro. The sun is right behind the trees. I felt backlighting them was the way to go this time.


My Mom, Bryn, and Tree Berry along the Potter Creek Trail today. The view is looking east across the mountainsides above Turnagain Arm. This region is where I spend a lot of time hiking and looking for wildlife. Pretty neat that I live only ten minutes from here.





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