Sun, July 21

Government shutdown means better views

The government shutdown means no funding for prescribed burns that were scheduled to begin later this morning at Mt. Elden and Lake Mary as well as Williams. This means more views like this for a few days before the USFS fills the sky with smoke. At least that is what the Public Affairs officer told me this afternoon so it will be back up there for the next few days and get all the shots I can get before the clarity in my images is gone and the persistent haze and smoke takes over ... also we know how good smoke is for our lungs so that treat awaits us all too.

It was unbelievably beautiful this morning with a 6 kt wind coming down runway 3 as I took off. I just kept climbing and in 14 minutes I was on the east side of the peaks at 15,000' and began the shoot. With the air so calm I was able to fly within the caldera and made passes on all sides at altitudes ranging from 10,400' to over 15,000'. Behind the peaks from right to left you have Kendrick Peak, Sitgreaves Mt and Bill Williams Mt. Mt Elden is not shown, but is just to the left of and below this photo. Visibility was in the 200 mile range. Geez, I love being up there.

I took more than 600 shots and have not even begun going through them, this was in the first 50 shots and I like it. Home by 9:45 AM and a quiet day and out for dinner.

Time for some sleep so I can catch that nice cool NE breeze on takeoff again in the morning. Kendrick looks pretty good on the east side in this image so I may head over there for a while too. No noticeable color towards Sedona so that will be a few weeks away I think. The SF Peaks likely at least a couple of weeks from peak color ... maybe when I get back next week? Saturday is going to find me sailing on the Pacific out of Oceanside, CA ...YES! It has been a while and looking forward to it.

Do not think I will be at the peaks quite so early, but found some neat angles and altitudes which I think will work a little later in the morning.

Have a terrific day and share your joy ... if you are short in that department create a little by sharing a smile with someone ;+)

Cheers II