I try to get to a couple of National Parks a year to just escape the rush of the life in the city. This year we chose to head to Grand Teton National Park in the Northwest corner of Wyoming. The park itself stretches for miles along the base of the mountain range, and sitting right at the foot of the mountains are a few lakes that provide a beautiful experience unlike any park I have been to yet. The lakes feed the Snake River which winds its way through the park. We spent a week at the park, and feel like that was barely enough time to scratch the surface of the entire park. This is definitely a spot I plan on returning to in the future.
One of the most serene landscapes can be seen at schwabachers landing where beaver dams have slowed the flow of the river, and allowed for gorgeous, uninterrupted reflections of the Grand Tetons.
Mormon Row is an old settlement that has been maintained throughout the years, and offers a very unique perspective of the jagged peaks. As with most parts of the park this is best seen in the morning hours.
Oxbow Bend at sunrise with a swan swimming towards Mount Moran.
This past weekend we attended a wedding in Garden City, KS, and on the way back we decided to drive through Greensburg. This is the town that was completely destroyed by an EF-5 tornado May 4, 2007, and instead of closing its doors became the “greenest” city in the world. They have rebuilt using the LEED (Leadership in Energy Efficient Design) program set by the USGBC (United States Green Building Council) as the foundation for any new building. So far Main Street has been developed with retail shops, a bank, the school, City Hall, and the Kiowa Community Center.
One of the best stories behind a building in the town is the Arts Center that was named in honor of the day that changed the town forever 5.4.7 Arts Center. This building was designed and built by students at the University of Kansas through the Studio 804 program. Overall it was a very positive experience to drive through the town that has come up from the ashes, and see new building happening all around keeps the growing town looking ahead instead of behind. This year the former Twilight theater will be rebuilt and re-open showing first run movies, and the “Big Well” is just about finished, and it will re-open the deepest hand-dug well in the world on May 26th.
Our third stop in Australia was one that most people could easily overlook, but ended up being our favorite stop on our 17 day excursion. Located about 15 miles off the coast of South Australia, sits the third largest island of Australia. It only takes about 2 hours to drive across the island, but there are plenty of things to distract you from driving straight through. There are only two major towns on the island, both of which are quaint towns with a view of the ocean from the main street. You have to be something of a nature lover to really enjoy a place like this because there are not a whole lot of places to entertain you, but the natural beauty and native wildlife of course. The island is aptly named for its large population of Kangaroos, but don’t believe that is the only wildlife you will experience, as there are seals, sea lions, koalas,echidnas, wallabies, and a ton of others (you will see at least one of these even if you don’t try that hard, these are just the ones we saw). We spent two days on the island at the Wildlife Retreat on the Flinders Chase National Park side, and loved evey minute of it. We hired a car to drive around and were warned right away that despite buying the extra insurance, that we were not covered between sunset and sunrise because of the shear numbers of Kangaroos out at night. It was a great place to relax and enjoy some gorgeous wildlife and scenery. Let me know what you think.
First, I know its been a while….I have been busy with the holidays and we were out of the country for about 3 weeks. I figured I needed to start posting some of the amazing things I was able to see while in Australia before I start posting anything else from more recent history. This first post is devoted solely to the place that inspired Katy and I to plan a return trip to the Australia. In 2006 Katy and I were both part of a study abroad program, seperately, near the city of Melbourne. In April of that year Katy returned home to a friend who coaxed her into joining myspace, and while she was looking for old friends she came across a photo of me in front of the Twelve Apostles rock formation, and decided to contact me. I was still in Australia so we began to email each other back and forth to get to know one another (again), and this continued even after I returned to the states. After about a year of talking over email or the phone we had an opportunity to have our first date, and the rest is history, but we both still hold a special place in our hearts for the place that was ultimately responsible for getting us back in touch with each other. I don’t believe that either one of us anticipated the beauty that was in store for us when we rolled up in our “hired car” to revisit these natural wonders, but I can tell you that even through this lens, it does not begin to describe the serenity of the location. You stand out on a raised peninsula jetting out into the ocean. The wind brushes against your face, and the sun sends a wave of warmth over your face while you stand 300 feet above the thunder of waves crashing into the shear cliff face. It is almost senses overload as you stand in awe of the wonders of nature. I hope that these images inspire the same emotions from you.
Just outside of the downtown area, perched atop Penn Valley Park, sits “The Scout” statue. He keeps watch to the west for any impending trouble for the downtown area. This area is one of the most picturesque places to view the Kansas City skyline, but it seems far less traveled than the nearby Liberty Memorial. I have wanted to explore this shot for a while, and after shooting it once, I am sure I will be back in the future. On my way back home I made a brief stop at a new installation art piece by John Salvest. It sits on the west lawn of the Federal Reserve in Kansas City. Look carefully because there is a hidden message buried in these foreign shipping containers.
This post is a compilation of scenes all throughout Rocky Mountain National Park. There are so many places to hike, and there are so many beautiful scenes in the park that it is hard to pick any one favorite place. The dramatic views and serenity of the mountains sort of overwhelms the senses, and it’s affect causes you to want to sit and drink in all that it has to offer. Time does not seem to exist here. This place is one of the most majestic places I have ever seen, and the words I write, or the pictures I take, will never be able to fully express the experience contained within. Please see this and understand I am trying to portray the pieces of a puzzle that cannot be seen in its entirety unless you, yourself have experienced similar moments. Enjoy.
My wife and I just recently celebrated our 1-year anniversary by taking a trip out to Colorado and visiting Rocky Mountain National Park. I know that everyone has seen photographs of the Rocky Mountains, and that most of the time they are impressive on any camera. What I set out to do with this trip was to capture the raw emotion and power that can be evoked by witnessing these fleeting moments. After doing my research I found out that most images of the mountains in this particular National Park, are best captured in the morning hours. During the next few days I will be sharing multiple series of these photographs based on the location at which I shot them. Todays post is on Sprague Lake. As with most lakes in Rocky Mountain National Park, this lake has the ability to give amazing reflection shots, but you have to catch the wind while its away. I was lucky enough to get a calm morning for one of the two days we shot here. Enjoy looking at Sprague Lake through my lens.