Misty Moose

Shiras Moose in Colorado by Gary Gray
Two moose buddies hanging out in a lake.

This photo from 2014 was taken before sunrise in a Northern Colorado lake.

It’s rare to find two large bulls hanging out together in a good photographic situation. The light was quite low and flat, but moose are seldom found in perfect light. The mist wafting from the lake’s surface gives a nice feel to the shot.

I’m still amazed at the images I made using the old, defunct, Canon EOS 7D. An APS-C camera that was probably the best affordable wildlife camera on the market for several years. It wasn’t much use above ISO 1600. This shot was at ISO 3200, pushing the limits of the sensor but with a little post processing in DXO PhotoLab Pro, I managed to milk a little more out of the old camera.  The lens was a Canon 400mm prime with a 1.4x teleconverter. I don’t use teleconverters very often, they tend to degrade the image quality a bit but these guys were on the far side of the lake and getting a nice framing required it.  No complaints.

As the old saying goes, the best camera is the one you have with you.

Scenic Saturday

Photograph of Red Mountain Creek
Red Mountain Creek – Colorado

Looking forward to a relaxing weekend here in the Rocky Mountains.

Trudy is at the cabin on one of her home improvement missions. I tend to step aside and watch the wood chips fly when she takes on a project. The photos from her adventure are looking promising. I just love having a gal who loves tools.

Hard Night on the Town

Photograph of an elk under a tree
Elk lounging beneath a tree in the Denver suburbs.

Working on the wildlife catalogs this morning I came across this comical photograph of an elk lounging beneath tree in my neighborhood.

Elk wander into the burbs of the foothills from time to time, however, it’s not often they stop and linger for any length of time.

This guy looks like he has a hangover after a hard night on the town.

Rocky Mountain High

Bighorn Ram photo by Gary Gray
Bighorn Ram – Colorado Rocky Mountains

Back to the summit this morning.

My main mission was Rocky Mountain Goats, however, the goats were scarce. I had to settle for the bighorn instead.

Beautiful morning on the mountain though. The clouds were blowing through fast and wafting below the summit of Mt. Evans.  All in all, it was a productive morning.

 

On Top of the World

Wildlife photography by Gary Gray
Bighorn Sheep on Mt. Evans

From Mt. Evans on this past Monday morning.

This bighorn ewe has a fine sunrise view of the South Park Valley. One of many who visited the summit. At this time of year, the mature rams aren’t found hanging out with the females. The late Spring coat is about as ugly as it gets. As Autumn approaches, the fur on these critters will become a chocolate brown and look much more appealing. Part of the cycles of life in the Rocky Mountains.

Notice the haze in the distant atmosphere. There is a wildfire burning near Durango and I heard there was another burning in Eagle County directly west of where this photo was taken. It’s going to be a long, hot, fire prone season I’m afraid.

I’ll Take It

Photograph of a baby mountain goat.
Baby Mountain Goat on top of Mt. Evans, Colorado

This morning was my first trip of the season to photograph the mountain goats.

Out with friend and fellow photographer Jim Esten, we struck pay-dirt near the summit of Mt. Evans. A good size group of these furry ungulates were gathered on the 14,000 foot peak,  along with a group of bighorn sheep.

I managed to upload a good selection of stock photos to my agencies and I’m still editing.

Now that I’m semi-retired, meaning I’m not really taking in much business beyond the photo tours, I’m enjoying a less stressful approach to photography. A good outing with a friend, nice breakfast at a mountain lodge and a leisurely editing pace is far more suitable than having to edit 3,000 wedding photos on a deadline.

I’ll take it.

I’m Not a Weekend Warrior

Photograph of a wild mountain goat
Juvenile Mountain Goat – Colorado

Mountain goat season is here.

This is a photo from June of 2016.

With the tourist season upon us here in Colorado, I try to avoid getting out on weekends. The crowds form quickly and the probability of getting nice photos goes down dramatically.

I’m not a weekend warrior.

Small Surprises

Colorado’s San Juan Mountains in Autumn

For me, landscape photography sells almost 2:1 better than wildlife. My most popular theme is Autumn photography in Colorado.

Sometimes I take the scenic beauty in Colorado for granted. I’ve been doing this for long enough, going to my normal haunts around the state begin to feel redundant.

What I’ve discovered is to not concentrate on the iconic locations and scenes, photographed by thousands, over and over.

These days I spend more time looking for scenery in the nooks and crannies along the back roads. Areas that one doesn’t normally associate with group workshops and camera club outings.

I don’t recall ever seeing a photograph of this location, though the area is heavily covered by shutterbugs.

The best days are when you find small surprises.