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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Nature & Landscapes Talk
Thread started 23 Aug 2017 (Wednesday) 17:31
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Great Basin and Death Valley NPs

 
Silver-Halide
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Post has been edited 1 month ago by Silver-Halide.
Aug 23, 2017 17:31 |  #1

Title says it all. I've yet to visit these parks and am thinking of doing so in about a month with the strict intention of going home with some awesome landscape photos. Tips for first time visitors appreciated.

Also want to head a little north after Death Valley into the White Mountains to catch the bristlecone pine trees. Looks like its high elevation and in September probably better be ready for cooler temps.


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Wilt
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Post has been edited 1 month ago by Wilt.
Aug 23, 2017 18:37 |  #2

Death Valley in about a month will have average lows around 76F and average highs around 106F
Schulman Grove (Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest visitor center) this week has lows of 14C (57F) and highs of 29C (84F); no info about mean temps in Sept.


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Silver-Halide
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Aug 23, 2017 19:19 |  #3

thanks Wilt! Have you shot at Death Valley?


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Wilt
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Aug 23, 2017 19:24 |  #4

No, have not had a desire to go where the temps get so close to the alternative to Heaven!


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Silver-Halide
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Aug 23, 2017 19:29 |  #5

Note to self: trick Wilt into shooting a Phoenix outdoor wedding next July. :twisted:

You'd be surprised how many couples really chose that :rolleyes:


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Wilt
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Post has been edited 1 month ago by Wilt.
Aug 24, 2017 09:51 as a reply to Silver-Halide's post |  #6

My mother did not raise a fool! I may be a bit slow, but I am not crazy.
What are the outdoor wedding venue managers putting into the tap water in the Phoenix area to encourage that thinking?!


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patrick ­ j
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Aug 25, 2017 12:47 |  #7

I have been to Death Valley once, very cool, you'll love it. There's a main part with all of the views you've probably seen, pretty easy to find the usual spots. I'm a sand dune person, so Mesquite Dunes is a must see, morning or evening for that one, just start walking out there. Badwater was probably my second favorite spot. Another one where just walk way out there. Zabriskie point of course. I did a few hikes up side canyons, they were fine but the Utah slot canyons are more interesting, so I'd put those at a lower priority. Goes without saying to be at these places early and late.


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saea501
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Aug 25, 2017 13:18 |  #8

I've shot Death Valley and the Nevada desert many times.

Both are just a complete sensory overload.

Death Valley is appropriately named. You have to be very careful as it can be very dangerous. There is little to no cell phone reception and, depending on where you go, you will see few people. The roads are not paved and the rocks are very good at eating tires. Most say carry two spares, especially if you're going back to the Racetrack Playa. 40 miles is long walk as your cell phone will become a paper weight. Distances are very fooling too. You might start hiking toward something and you will walk forever and the object never gets any closer. The Mesquite Dunes are a great example. I wanted to get out to where there was virginal sand, no foot prints....so I started walking. And walking.......walking in that sand sucks energy out of you like someone cut a one inch hole in the bottom of a water bucket. Then, of course, you have to walk back. All the while I kept thinking.....'so this is why they call this place DEATH Valley.'

But that's what makes it fun. Play the light right and you will come back with some spectacular pictures.


Remember what the DorMouse said.....feed your head.
Bob

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flyfisher
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Aug 25, 2017 17:19 |  #9

If you go to the sand dunes in the morning the footprints will be mostly gone as the sand blows around and they quickly fill in. You will find lots of photo opportunities in death valley, there is Scotties castle, then you have the ghost town Rhyolite. there is also Darwin falls on the west side of the park there is quite a variety of things to see and photograph. Enjoy your self you will find many thing that will peak your interest


Steve

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Silver-Halide
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Aug 25, 2017 17:19 |  #10

patrick j wrote in post #18436704 (external link)
I have been to Death Valley once, very cool, you'll love it. There's a main part with all of the views you've probably seen, pretty easy to find the usual spots. I'm a sand dune person, so Mesquite Dunes is a must see, morning or evening for that one, just start walking out there. Badwater was probably my second favorite spot. Another one where just walk way out there. Zabriskie point of course. I did a few hikes up side canyons, they were fine but the Utah slot canyons are more interesting, so I'd put those at a lower priority. Goes without saying to be at these places early and late.

Yep, I'm on my third year of serious, dedicated landscape trips and what I've learned is to do my traveling midday, and arrive at my destination maybe an hour or two before the golden light sets in, so I can find a few spots. Then I can shoot through sunset into the Blue Hours and then go back to the truck and camp there for the night. Then predawn I'm up and ready to shoot the sunrise for a few hours, and then move onto the next location as mid morning sets in.

I've never been to Death Valley but as saea501 mentions below I've read that its a long drive and I can camp there so my usual mo would probably work well for both morning and evening? Or is only one part of the day's light good there?

Thanks!! :-D


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Silver-Halide
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Aug 25, 2017 17:28 |  #11

saea501 wrote in post #18436749 (external link)
I've shot Death Valley and the Nevada desert many times.

Both are just a complete sensory overload.

Death Valley is appropriately named. You have to be very careful as it can be very dangerous. There is little to no cell phone reception and, depending on where you go, you will see few people. The roads are not paved and the rocks are very good at eating tires. Most say carry two spares, especially if you're going back to the Racetrack Playa. 40 miles is long walk as your cell phone will become a paper weight. Distances are very fooling too. You might start hiking toward something and you will walk forever and the object never gets any closer. The Mesquite Dunes are a great example. I wanted to get out to where there was virginal sand, no foot prints....so I started walking. And walking.......walking in that sand sucks energy out of you like someone cut a one inch hole in the bottom of a water bucket. Then, of course, you have to walk back. All the while I kept thinking.....'so this is why they call this place DEATH Valley.'

But that's what makes it fun. Play the light right and you will come back with some spectacular pictures.

Thanks. Yes; I already live in the Sonoran desert and I've learned the hard way how you often don't feel the extent of your perspiration and respiration fluid loss. Electrolytes are critical for all you thread lurkers! V8 are an electrolyte bomb, compared to a paltry Gateorade. I've always heard that there's a few people who die there every year by wandering as you mentioned.

Are there any locations that will work for sunrise but not sunset? or vice versa? I will probably hit most of the usual spots you mention: the dunes, Zabriskie, and I also have the Racetrack Playa on my mind. I have a 4wd truck and its currently shod with Cooper Discoverer AT3's that are only a year old. Supposedly they're a pretty good set. Maybe not quite as good as BFGoodrich A/T's but definitely better than a passenger auto and low ground clearance. I've read elsewhere about the road being a rough ride. Should I plan on letting air out of my tires or should I be good to go with a truck and semi-rough terrain tires?

Much appreciated!


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saea501
... spilled over a little on the panties
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Florida
Aug 26, 2017 06:11 as a reply to Silver-Halide's post |  #12

I wouldn't adjust the air pressure, just have a spare.

Zabriskie makes for good golden hour pictures because of the color of the rocks. Same with Dante's view.

But most any where in the area can be gorgeous at that hour.


Remember what the DorMouse said.....feed your head.
Bob

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