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Berries on a Log

It is getting near the end of winter and Spring is around the corner.It will not be long before I will be tramping my wilderness haunts once again.

In the mean time I have been going through my photo collection and came up with a couple of shots that may interest you.The above shot was taken just off the Killarney road near a beaver pond in late July.I had never seen these berries growing together in such a large clump.I have usually seen them grown here and there as individual plants.I know them as bunch berries.If anyone has more info on these berries please let me know.What makes this shot unique is the stump and fallen log that really helps make this an interesting composition.

I used a tripod as it was late evening with very even lighting available.The zoom was set at 34 mm.The shutter speed was 1.3 sec @ f22.

The above berry photo was taken on a trip to Gordon Chutes in late September.The plant was a tall Sumac type of plant at the rivers edge.I was attracted by the patterns that were available with the leaves and stems to go along with the red berries forming a triangle shape and flowing in the same direction as the leaves and stems.

I shot this photo with my camera on a tripod.The zoom was set to 135 mm.The shutter speed  was 3.2 @ f22.Again this is a very tight composition.

Well that is it for today and I hope all have weathered the winter well.I am looking forward to Spring.So until next time happy trails.

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Photographing White-Tail Deer

Living in the Beaver Lake area West of Sudbury, I am in prime White-Tail deer habitat. This locale consists of cultivated fields as well as abandoned fields.Up in the hills grow oak trees supplying acorns in season.The deer have flourished quite well here.There biggest danger is getting hit by oncoming traffic at night.

I like to travel the back roads searching for feeding deer in the fields.This is best done in the late afternoon or early morning.There are some folks here who feed the deer and they can be much easier to photograph.Always remember ask for permission to go on someone’s property.

I went and visited a friend nearby and was able to get some close up shots such as above.This photo was shot with a zoom setting of 135 mm and the shutter speed set at 1/50 sec @ f6.3. It was a cloudy day so high shutter speeds were out , the trade off was more even lighting with out the shadows.Shooting tight head shots allows me to have a lower f stops to blur out the background.

I was driving along a back road when I noticed a herd of does feeding at the edge of the road.Luckily they were on the driver’s side and I slowly rolled up to the deer.They all bounded way but one and I captured this very nice pose of the doe in an alert state as she was looking towards the rest of the herd.Deer are very nervous animals and are always ready for instant flight. I shot this photo with the zoom set at 100 mm and the shutter speed was at 200 sec f 8.It was cloudy but more light was available than the previous shot.The brownish color of the grass compliments the brown deer’s fur.A also left space in front of the doe for a sense of distant in the direction she is looking.

 

As I drove further down the road I spotted two does at the edge of a gravel pit.The road ran parallel to them and I was able to get this shot as the two does came together.This photo was taken with a zoom setting of 135 and the shutter speed set at 1/50 sec f 6.3.

This last shot was taken at a friend’s deer feeding station.This doe was a lighter color than the other does I came across.Deer have such beautiful big eyes and gracefulness that is a pleasure to observe.The zoom was set at 109 mm with a shutter speed of 1/50 sec f6.3

Well that is it for today,respect others private property.So until next time happy trails.

 

Hiking The Crack

My photographic partner Paul Smith had been after me for some time to take a hike up to the Crack in Killarney Provincil Park.Back on October 11 I picked up Paul and we met Gary Leclair at the South End Canadian Tire parking lot in Sudbury. We load our gear into Gary’s mini van and headed to Killarney Provincial Park.Gary parked the van in the parking lot.

This is a very popular Provincial Park were the hiking trails are numerous.There are a lot of people taking advantage of this beautiful part of Northern Ontario to get out and go for a hike on scenic trails.

The three of us picked up the trail and started walking through a maple and birch grove of brightly colored leaves.Along the way I noticed a pond on our left.We made our way down to the pond.The wind was calm and being cloudy the lighting was very good.The first thing I saw was the small cliff face at the end of the pond.The rocks here are white quartzite that gleam.I set up the tripod and composed a shot by adding a small rock and a piece of wood reflecting in the water on the right.You will also notice evergreens on the right.I now had a lead in to the rock.There were a lot of bare trees now with no leaves so I kept the left side tight. The splash of orange and red on the cliff really brought out the picture.

I shot the above scene with a shutter speed of 0.4 sec @f22.The zoom was at 56.0 mm.

Looking around me I spotted this little island of moss and grass.There were these smallish reddish plants growing among the grass.You will also observe a group of white flowers growing here.The lighting was extraordinary and I set up the shot that you see above.The zoom was set at 135 mm with a shutter speed of 0.6 sec @ f22.

The three of us finished up shooting and we continued up the trail.We met numerous people hiking out and finally we approached the Crack.This is a split in the rock face that you have to climb to make the top.This last part of the hike consists of climbing up and over boulders.Your reward is an awesome panoramic view of lakes and the La Cloche Mountains before your eyes.I did not take any photos here as most of the hills were bare of color now.I will most certainly will be back next Fall.I have talked Paul into exploring the lakes below us next summer.

This a one and a half hour hike to the top of the crack.I enjoyed meeting Gary and hope to be in touch in the near future for another advendure.

For more info on Killarney Provincial Park you can check out there website

http://www.ontarioparks.com/english/kill.html

Paul Smith’s website is here so check it out too.

http://paulsmithphotography.ca/

So until next time happy trails

 

Aux Sauble River

As you have noticed most of my photographic work is in and around water. Paul Smith of Whitefish,Ontario and I have spent the last few months hiking into and along the Aux Sauble River North of Massey Ontario.This wilderness area offers excellent photo opportunities. The river system flows out of  Aux Sauble Lake,52 miles North of Massey and twists and turns until it empties into the Spanish River in Massey.The Spanish River in itself empties into the North Channel, which is part of  Lake Huron in the Great Lakes System.

There are many scenic locations to discover with beautiful rock formations.The river has a number of rapids and waterfalls along its length. We use a hand held GPS to explore the region.The terrain is rugged so you have to be in reasonably good shape.

The vast majority of my work is created in the evening.The drawback is that you have to allow enough time to get back to the truck before it gets too dark.The above photo was shot with the zoom lens set at 30mm and a shutter speed of  2 sec at f22. In setting up this photo I used the water as an S curve to lead your eye into the photo.Framing with the rock formations also helps when creating your photo.

The above photo was shot with the zoom set at 28 mm and a shutter speed of 0.4 sec at f22. This is the same location as the first photo but taken  a couple weeks before. You will notice that the lighting is very different in these photos,creating different effects and tones.The first photo is much warmer and the color stands out.The 2nd photo was also taken earlier in the evening allowing for a faster shutter speed of 0.4 sec.You must go back to the same locales many times and observe the behavior of the lighting and also the time of year.

Just to be able to be in these locations is a blessing for me.To listen to the water rushing over the rocks and enjoy the serenity….pristine silence and beauty of these locations is well worth the effort to capture.Till next time happy trails.

Exceptional Lighting.

One of the things I am always on the look out for when I am out hiking is Lighting effects on various trees.This usually occurs late afternoon and into the evening.The trick is to fine a composition to fit the tree into.The above photo shows an example of what I did to show the best effect of the side lighting.I created a very tight composition showing quiet water along the river’s edge,some green reflection of the tree in the foreground and reddish rocks to add depth and color.This photo was shot with the zoom lense at 80 mm.The shutter speed was set at 0.6 sec @ f22.

Early evening lighting filtering through the trees and side lighting  the evergreens atop a cliff was the subject of this composition.Using the rocks as a base and the water in the foreground I was able to complete this photo.Shot with a zoom lense set at 100 mm and a shutter speed of 25 sec and f 5.6.

There are many lighting effects to be seen as you hike along trails and rivers edges, you just have to learn to observe the various effects and see what type a composition you can come up with.So until next time happy trails.

Northern Spring

Spring appears to have arrive in the North country.The rivers are starting to open up and Paul Smith and I headed out to Chutes Provincial Park,Massey. It was a beautiful warm sunny late afternoon.The photo possibilities were scarce but I managed to get some shots in.We found an interesting piece of ice sculpture and I created the composition above with the ice along the shore line as a lead in. The water is very dark at this time of year,which allowed for better contrast in the photo.I shot this photo at 1 sec at f22 with the zoom lense set at 30 mm.

This photo was taken in the same locale but at a different angle. The ice formation is very prominent here and you can use your imagination as to what you see.I used sections of ice in the foreground to add depth and low shutter speed to give the water a soft look. Again the dark water adds contrast with the snow to create a pleasing effect.The photo was shot at 0.4 sec @ f22 with a zoom setting of 28 mm.

I find that at this time of year there is not much color and the lighting can be harsh off the snow. We waited till late evening to do most of our photographing.

The Magic Moment

The sun has disappeared below the horizon,the sky is clear. There is about 30 minutes of shooting left. The rocks transform into a beautiful warm reddish glow.The Magic hour.I looked at this particular setup and I wanted to show the color and detail of the rocks. The rushing water helped create depth but at the same time I didn’t want the water to overpower the composition.I created a very tight photo. The settings are 80 mm set at 10 sec @f29. This created the silky and misty feel to the water.

Remember to carry a flashlight with you as you will be walking out in the dark when shooting this late. It can get tricky when walking rough trails in the dark.