Road Trippin’…The Palouse

I simply couldn’t be so close to the Palouse and not stop by for a quick visit and luckily Mimi had never been and was curious to see it too.  We arrived late afternoon just as the light was getting good with shadows and light playing across the wheat fields.  We drove around a bit looking for interesting subjects like rusty trucks with rolling hills and blue sky backgrounds just sreaming for some HDR treatment to bring out the colorful paint and rust patina from years of exposure to weather…

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One change I noticed immediately was the number of wind farms in the Palouse since my last visit a number of years ago.  The distant landscape was dotted with the slowly turning beheamoths.  I kind of like them in their stark, simple way.  The rolling hills made a nice foreground and the windmills broke up the clear blue sky.  The sun danced in and out of the clouds while shadows played across the landscape…

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The sun was dropping lower in the sky, it was time to head to Steptoe Butte where I had planned our last shoot of the day watching the constantly changing light as evening approached.  I used my AF-S 80-400mm most of the time to isolate and compress the landscape…

 

The later is became, the longer the shadows and the greater the contrast as I looked to the south capturing sidelighting kissing the tops of the hills.  I dialed in minus exposure compensation and included the lit up grain silo in the lower corner to increase the dramatic impact…

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For such a short visit, it yielded several images that I am very happy with and we weren’t through yet…we had one last stop before making the last push for home…Palouse Falls.  It was only a few miles off our route and worth the visit.  We awoke to an early thunderstorm which quickly passed leaving the world freshly bathed and literally glowing in the morning light…

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Palouse Falls was beautiful with direct light hitting the falls themselves and the clouds bouncing additional light into the canyon which would have been terribly contrasty otherwise.  I still ended up making a 5 frame bracket of the scene and processed the image as an HDR using Photomatix and adding a little detail extractor, some soft focus and a bit of brilliance and warmth to enhance the clors and details that I could see and my camera could not capture in one click…

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One last look at the falls and we headed home.  2613 miles, 9 states and 5 days…What a great trip with my ‘det, Mimi!  Thanks for your share of the driving, the good conversations, the laughs and playing tourist with your crazy friend!  Our new addition to the family (Atalanta; the Greek Goddess of travel and adventure) is safely tucked into the garage of her new home awaitng her first adventure.  Stay tuned…

 

Images created with Nikon D4, AF-S 80-400mm 4.5-5.6 VR (except Palouse Falls with the AF-S 24-120mm f4 VR).