At the end of May and beginning of June of last year, we traveled to the northern part of Wyoming. Our first stop had been Sheridan, and we then headed to Cody. We took the scenic route, something Melisa dreads because someone wants to stop and snap photos whenever anything scenic is at hand. What is the scenic route, you ask?
Well, you head south on I-90 to Buffalo where you briefly hop (in our case, drive) on I-25 south and exit heading west on US-16. At Worland, instead of continuing to Cody, you head south on WY-Highway 20 until you reach WY-Highway 431, also known as Gooseberry Creek Road. Turn right, drive 30+ miles to WY-Highway 120, turn north and come into Cody from the south.
On US-16, you see things like these . . .
Now, both of those and some later photos are landscape photos created by stitching a number of single photos together. The problem with these is that even at 1280 pixels (what opens up if you click on them) is too small to do them justice.
To see what they really look like, go to the SmugMug Gallery (HERE) and look at them full size.
Now, this is under the full midday sun . . . most of the photos are going to be either too dark (shooting westward) . . .
. . . or bland under the overhead sun.
There are tricks one can play, like instead of shooting wide . . .
. . . one shoots a bit narrower, capturing what shadow and contrast are available . . .
Mind you, still washed out, but more discernable detail.
By the way, those are big trees, and those are huge rocky faces. Also, they are very close to the road, towering over us puny mortals driving our SUVs. It’s actually a bit worrisome parking under here because it’s not difficult to imagine rocks shearing off those imposing cliffs, rolling down the steep hill, and crushing my camera. Maybe even my phone.
It may look as if I’m a good distance away, but I’m shooting a very wide lens and pointing at almost a 45º angle.
And now, I’m going to give a quick lesson on composition. As much as the cliffs are interesting, the foreground is not. The answer? Aim higher . . .
No . . . higher still.
“What’s wrong with you, boy? I said higher!”
That last one is aiming almost straight up.
Another trick is to shoot with the sun somewhat behind you and use a longer lens for a profile of the rocks.
Once past the mountains, and before we get on 431, the landscape opens up to flat expanses.
There was rain in the distance, and while we hoped to hit it (free carwash) it was not meant to be. The above is obviously a panorama, but these next two shots I like because they show that you can make photos work even if the horizon sits in the middle of the photo . . .
And then, as we approach the Gooseberry Badlands, Melisa despairs. She knows. She knows we’ll sit there as I wear my finger out pressing the shutter release.
Why are they called the Gooseberry Badlands? I can only assume because they resemble the actual Badlands (HERE‘s my account of the Badlands from my 2004 Western Trip).
Now, unfortunately, the clouds diffused the sunlight . . . OR . . . fortunately, the sunlight was diffused by clouds.
Again, not really as impressive as going to SmugMug, but, hey, I can only push so much.
This also looked like a worthy subject for a B&W conversion (at least one of my readers is partial to them).
If you don’t want to go to the SmugMug album, at least click on the above.
Here’s a panorama from photos taken in portrait mode.
. . . and the corresponding B&W.
While not yet in full flower, the cacti were heading that way.
But, it was the rock formations that held my attention. I looked back toward Melisa, but she was reading, so I went to town.
This next one is the panoramic version of the above . . .
And this next one is a very large panorama (the original is 17548 x 2770, 12.5MB).
Even if you click on the above, it will be too small (1280 maximum length).
The best way to see it is in SmugMug, but, tell you what I’m going to do . . . if you have a fast Internet hookup, click HERE and the full size photo will open up in a new tab or window. You can then click to zoom in and out on whatever part you want to see.
Here are some of the details . . .
The reason a wide panorama does not translate well into a smaller size is because the maximum width here is 640 pxl. When you click on one, the size of the one that opens is 1280 pxl wide, but the height is only in the order of 200-300 pxl (proportions remain the same).
BUT . . . if I do a vertical panorama (three portrait-oriented photos going from the bottom to the top) you get this . . .
That’s the same size as if you were to click on it . . . 640 x 1574 pxl.
That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ o o o o o o ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
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. . . my FP ward . . . chieken shit.