Day 5 of 5 – Black and White Challenge

Day 5 / 5 – #5dayblackandwhitechallenge, nominated/challenged by Steve Parker.

This image was captured this past September up in the Clear Creek Reservoir canyon on the way to Winfield, just south of Twin Lakes, Colorado when I was out capturing the #ColoradoGold. I believe this cabin is the Davis cabin, situated right alongside County Road 390 near Vicksburg.


Aspens 20140928 589_90_91_HDR

Aspens 20140928 589_90_91_HDR


This is an HDR black and white image. Processed in #Lightroom and Photomatix Pro.

This concludes my 5-day Black and White Challenge. It’s been fun and I’ve seen a lot of excellent imagery as a result of this challenge. In parting, I’d like to nominate Mark Mortensen and Scott Carlin to post one BW image/day for five days. And each day nominate someone new to carry this challenge on…. Participation is entirely optional, but I encourage you to try.


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Colorado Gold

And here are the #ColoradoGold Aspens I captured this year. This was the first trip to see them, and I was lucky enough to capture more a week later in early October that I’ll post soon.


Aspens 20140928 839

Aspens 20140928 839

Aspens 20140928 840

Aspens 20140928 840

Aspens 20140928 045_6_7_HDR-Edit

Aspens 20140928 045_6_7_HDR-Edit

Aspens 20140928 051_2_3_HDR-Edit

Aspens 20140928 051_2_3_HDR-Edit

Aspens 20140928 076_7_8_HDR-Edit

Aspens 20140928 076_7_8_HDR-Edit

Aspens 20140928 109_10_11_HDR

Aspens 20140928 109_10_11_HDR

Aspens 20140928 115_6_7_HDR

Aspens 20140928 115_6_7_HDR

Aspens 20140928 133_4_5_HDR

Aspens 20140928 133_4_5_HDR



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Fall River Road

On a last minute whim, I decided to drive up to Rocky Mountain National Park (RMNP) on Sunday to see what the Aspens were like on Fall River Road. The drive in to RMNP was a little slow due to the Aspen Gold Festival happening in the town of Estes Park just outside RMNP, so traffic played a roll both going in and later coming out of the park.

I arrived at the gate about 10am and was thankful to only be third in line waiting to get in to the park (which was nothing compared to when I drove out around 2:30pm where I saw a lineup of cars stretching for a half mile back from the entrance, all waiting to get in!).

For what everyone has been claiming would be an early fall, I was quite surprised to see a lot of green aspen groves along the drive in to Fall River Road. And I began to worry… Luckily, about half way up the hillside I starting seeing small groves of Aspens that had turned to gold. Ah, I love this time of the year! There’s something about the Aspen gold, cool crisp days and that Colorado Blue sky…..

So I decided to play with waterfalls if I could find any, and started photographing at the Fall River, which parallels the road for a good portion of the drive up the canyon, and which at this time of the year is more like a creek rather than a river. Nothing fantastic, but fun nevertheless… 2-stop ND filter AND a circular polarizer filter helped to smooth out the “rushing” water.


Fall River Rd 20100926 064

Fall River Rd 20100926 064

Fall River Rd 20100926 083

Fall River Rd 20100926 083


And then further up the canyon, I came across a nice little grove of Aspens and was able to grab these two compositions in between the dust clouds from the almost constant stream of passing cars.


Fall River Rd 20100926 141

Fall River Rd 20100926 141

Fall River Rd 20100926 229

Fall River Rd 20100926 229


Here’s a better view of the spires near the summit of Mt. Chapin. I had posted an iPhone photo to my Facebook stream using the Motion-X GPS¬†iPhone application to track my route, but it pales in comparison to these shots!


Fall River Rd 20100926 303

Fall River Rd 20100926 303

Fall River Rd 20100926 297

Fall River Rd 20100926 297


And here you can see the train of cars that was always present on this drive…. Grrrr.


Fall River Rd 20100926 317

Fall River Rd 20100926 317


This train was pretty close to the summit area too. You can see the Trail Ridge Store & Cafe on the ridgeline below. I was parched from all the dust!


Fall River Rd 20100926 314

Fall River Rd 20100926 314

Fall River Rd 20100926 327

Fall River Rd 20100926 327


And finally, here are a couple of views from various turnouts along the top of Trail Ridge Road, beyond the Trail Ridge Store & Cafe you see above…


Fall River Rd 20100926 360

Fall River Rd 20100926 360

Fall River Rd 20100926 369

Fall River Rd 20100926 369


As you can see, not the greatest light to be out photographing, nothing dramatic about midday sun, but crystal clear Colorado Blue skies aren’t too bad either. And Aspens love to be photographed with backlight at almost any time of the day.

Hope you enjoyed this little trip up the Fall River Road. Where did you go out to shoot the Aspens this year?


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