Week 41: Landscape High


October 12, 2016 – I confess. The first words of this post are a lie. It’s not October 12. It’s November 21, but I made the post page on the photo’s due day–which shows how overdue I am, not because I haven’t been making pictures, but because I wasn’t in love with one yet. Before I get too far behind, though, I vowed this week to catch up, so forgive the multiple posts, starting with Landscape High.


Week 41: Landscape High

week-41-landscape-high-winner

Everything looks different when you are high.

Find a high perspective to shoot this landscape.


This image is straight off the camera. I don’t know why it looked different from the others I made that day, but it did. More golden, yet more muted somehow, while still being vibrant. As my feller put it, “The contrast of wilderness and urban sprawl is interesting and a very pretty picture. Looks old at a glance.” I felt the same. It has an old quality, so I did no editing. That timeless quality appealed to me.

The Photo Location

El Modena Open Space

We live in Orange County, California, home to 3.114 MILLION people in 948 square miles, with our bordering counties, Los Angeles and San Diego, also housing in the 3 million range each. Mind boggling how many people surround us. Yet we have this great little wilderness park walking distance from our house. While up on the peaks, you don’t feel the press of urban around you. There are even some spots along the trail where you’d swear you’re out in the middle of nowhere.

El Modena Open Space

Funny thing is, we lived here for years before I discovered all of the trails. We’d gone up the first and smallest peak a couple of times to watch fireworks on the 4th, but it wasn’t until about two years ago when I went beyond our usual vista point and found the other two peak trails beyond.

Getting to the highest point of the three peaks always makes me feel so triumphant.

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Speaking of Triumphant, early on in the hike, I set down my super cool Babes Ride Out Triumph water bottle to take a photo, so had to backtrack at the end, hoping to find where I’d set it down. Right around the spot I made this week’s photo, I got lucky! Nestled amongst the prickly pear, I found my bottle. Woo hoo!

Triumph Water Bottle

The steep trails can sometimes get you, like on this particular day, when my foot slipped on the rocks descending the steepest downhill and BAM! Down I went, sliding halfway down on my booty, gaining the attention–and amusement–of the three guys sitting in chairs at the vista point below, drinking beer and stinking up the air. So yeah… booty fine, pride wounded.

Landscape High

The “Week of” Attempts

Here are the two photos I made during the week of the challenge, handheld, at 32000 ISO. This camera amazes me. The images, however, didn’t thrill me enough to make them my official photo.

Landscape High Road

Landscape High Road

Until later this week, with last week’s Portrait Backlit and this week’s Landscape Abandoned (both of which I’ve made…)

Later gators!

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