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By Travis Lair
March 24th, 2010
This image was captured about an hour before sunset on a recent backpacking trip to the bottom of the Grand Canyon via Soap Creek. Located about 15 miles from Glen Canyon dam in northern Arizona, this area is well upriver from the popular main corridor. The solitude and sheer grandeur is incredible.
Nikon D90, Sigma 10-20mm, polarizing filter.
GPS Coords: 36.74086, -111.69350
March 23rd, 2010
In Winter 2009 I was on top of the Brocken (Harz Mountains, Germany) and had the most wonderful sunrise, I have ever seen. I started the walk at 5:00h in the morning at full moon, needed no headlight. There were about hundred people on top waiting for the Sun. It was a wonderful moment.
Canon IXUS 850IS.
N 51 47.975, E 10 36.910
March 21st, 2010
The African Black Oystercatcher is a resident breeder on the rocky coasts and islands of southern Africa. Sadly, there are currently less than 9,000 adult birds of this species, so it is highly endangered. However, it is easy to spot along the coasts of South Africa.
I was lucky to get so close to an adult couple and took quite a few shots of them in De Hoop Nature Reserve. This shot is my favourite. I simply love the contrast between the red of the bill and eye, the black of the plumage and the blue of the ocean.
Canon EOS 40D, Canon 70-200mm f/4, ISO 100, 1/800 sec., 200mm, f/6.3. Post-processing in Adobe Lightroom 2, finishing touches in Adobe Photoshop CS4.
March 16th, 2010
This image was taken on a hiking trip in February of 2010, in the Painted Hills Unit of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument. I had just gotten a new camera so on my way back from Central Oregon I stopped to hike some of the trails and take some pictures. It was a nice and clear sunny day, and not too cold - perfect for hiking that area. I took this at the first parking area and trail.
The gray layers are mudstone, siltstone, and shale formed from sediments deposited on an ancient river floodplain. The black layers are manganese nodules or manganese stains. The red layers are ancient soil profiles (laterites) that formed on floodplain deposits. Surface weathering relatively quickly breaks down these rocks into a clay-rich surface coating that easily erodes during summer flashfloods and/or winter storms.
Canon EOS 7D, Canon 17-40mm F/4L.
March 15th, 2010
The second camp in Etosha, Halali, is located next to the Moringa waterhole. I spent my second night in Etosha staying at this camp and watching the waterhole for most of the day. When the Sun began to sink behind the horizon I watched this matriarchal group of elephants drinking at the waterhole. While observing the animals we also had an amazing sunset with an orange so saturated - I never saw anything like it before.
Just after the elephants had gone we saw a small group of black rhino drinking and also had some hyena and a leopard later that night. This is a magical place!
Canon EOS 40D, Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8, ISO 400, 1/80 sec., 40mm, f/5.6. Post-processing in Adobe Lightroom 2, finishing touches in Adobe Photoshop CS4.