Location Scouting

OMG Smokies Fall Color

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What a difference 2 days has made! From Thursday until Saturday the colors in the Smokies have gone from ho hum to OMG. Everything above 3000 foot elevation is ablaze with color. For all who were looking for the post from a few days ago, my apologies. That problem has now been remedied! Unfortunately Clingmans […]


Great Smoky Mountains Scouting Report

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  So this report is based on Friday, Saturday and Sunday in the Smokies. We spent most of our time around Greenbriar, but more area will come this week. The trees overall are further behind in blooming than I have seen them in a long time. The dogwoods are blooming up to about 1800 feet […]


Ireland: Sheep and Rock Walls

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No. Ireland is not all sheep and rock walls. But in our first day in Ireland, Rebecca and I saw so many sheep and so many rock walls ( the most common accident to cars in Ireland is get too close to a rock wall and taking off the passenger mirror. If you don’t believe […]


Cumberland Plateau Fall Color

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Yesterday (Tuesday October 29) I headed to the Obed NSR just outside of Wartburg on the Cumberland Plateau. From Oak Ridge to Wartburg, the colors looked promising but the fog kept me from looking at the mountainsides. I headed to Lily Bluff Overlook, one of my favorite places in the park. Great color to be […]


Smokies Scouting from Monday October 28

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This will be a short report as I’m headed out again, this time to the Cumberland Plateau. Yesterday, Oct 28, I was in the Smokies.. Tremont area looked good in places, but lots of trees right on the river had lost their leaves. You could find some areas with good color. Weird thing is that […]


Smokies Scouting Report October 22

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Yesterday (Tuesday) I took a short trip over to the Smokies to check on color. I had been south of the Smokies last Thursday and the color there was still way behind. Some color around 3000-5000 foot elevation, but pretty green under that. Well, I drove in through Townsend and Little River Road and there […]


Seattle Waterfall Garden

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While traipsing around Seattle a couple of weeks ago, Rebecca and I saw information about a Waterfall Garden in Pioneer Square neighborhood. We went down to the oldest area of Seattle to explore and learn some about the history of Seattle. To have a waterfall garden in the middle of city is wonderful. Pioneer Square […]


Trip to Comet Falls

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Rebecca and I decided that our legs were recovered enough from our trip to Paradise Glacier to hike up to Comet Falls. It looked like there were several falls on the way and the trail would follow the stream. Great decision. We hiked up and up, following the stream and shooting the various falls and […]


Mt Rainier and Water

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Flying into Seattle and staying on Whidbey Island for the first part of our trip, the lack of precipitation was evident. Fields and grass were brown. Locals told us they hadn’t had rain in over a month. Then we headed to Mt Rainier NP. Wow. It seems that there wasn’t evidence of a lack of […]


Phone Cameras? Camera Phones?

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Rob Sheppard, one of my best friends, and I have been teaching together for 12-15 years. We first started teaching digital photography before the digital SLRs were affordable for most people. We used the compact digital cameras and Photoshop.. A lot has changed in that time. Lightroom, affordable digital SLRs, small form cameras with interchangeable […]


New Book

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I have just released my third book. But this one is special. It brings me into the digital age. My new book (which is free) is only on the iBookStore and only for iPads. I created this book with iBooks Author 2, as Rob Sheppard and I have been going back and forth on how […]


Smokies Hidden Gem

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White Oak Sinks About 20 years ago a friend of mine told me about White Oak Sinks in the Smoky Mountians. He even drew a map for me ( see below). It wasn’t until last year that I finally took the trip down the trail to see for myself. Now if you go look for […]


Not Nature but lots of fun: Old Car City

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For all of you car buffs and macro buffs and HDR buffs, have I got a place for you. I’ve been there several times and will be planning a workshop there in November (if I’m not in Antarctica). Located 60 miles north of Atlanta, on US Highway 411 in White GA is a well kept […]


Work a great location from multiple vantage spots!

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Today I wandered into the Smokies to see what was happening with Spring. Rebecca and I were at the Cherohala over the weekend and spring seems pretty far behind with flowers just starting to come out and trees just barely thinking about budding out.. I decided to head into Tremont area as this is usually […]


Smokies Fall Color Report October 18, 2012

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Yesterday I was out early and shooting along the Foothills Parkway in the Great Smoky Mountains NP. The color along the Parkway is gorgeous. The maples and hickories and gums and some oaks are really changing color. And the color doesn’t appear to be dull or washed out. I went as far as south of […]


Fall Color Peaking on Cumberland Plateau along Obed WSR – October 15, 2012

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Chasing fall color is a fun task. Go out and see what has changed since the last time you were there. Well, since Rebecca and I were up and Lilly Bluff 9 days ago, the color has come alive. I started out at the Nemo Bridge area where the color is coming along but not […]


Fall Color scouting: Foothills Parkway (GSMNP) and Cherohala Skyway 10/13/2012

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This is from Cherohala Skyway.. Compare to previous image in Scouting Yesterday was a big loop of scouting. I started out on the Foothills Parkway around 6am, planning to shoot star trails to sunrise. But being completely enveloped in fog put an end to that thought. I waited out the fog and then started about […]


Great Smoky Mountains – Fall Color Report 10/11/2012

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Oconaluftee Overlook, Great Smoky Mountains NP With the low for the TN Valley predicted to be around 40° F, I decided to head up toward Clingman’s Dome again. When I got to Newfound Gap, the temperature was still about 37°F, so I decided to keep going to the Oconaluftee Overlook. Got there sooner than all […]


Scouting Fall Color: Great Smoky Mountains NP

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Clingman’s Dome Sunrise this morning Today started out at sunrise at Clingman’s Dome parking lot. Driving up through the fog, I was hoping that it would be clear at the top. Around 5200 feet elevation, I broke through the fog and saw blue sky. I arrived at the parking lot just before the sun peeked […]


Fall Scouting Report: Obed WSR on Cumberland Plateau

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On the opposite side of the Tennessee Valley from the southern Appalachian Mountains lies the Cumberland Plateau. (Shameless plug, if you want to see more of the Plateau, go to my Cumberland Odyssey book, special Holiday price now). This area is thought to have a greater biodiversity than the Great Smoky Mountains NP, which has […]


Scouting Cherohala Skyway for fall color October 3

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Since we have had strange weather this year, I decided I would go out and start scouting a little early for fall color in the souther Appalachians and on the Cumberland Plateau. Today I started at the Cherohala Skyway since the elevation gets up to above 5400 feet. We started out with dry weather in […]


When to shoot Fall Color?

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I have been getting asked since mid summer about the best time to shoot fall color in the southern Appalachian mountains. The answer is yes. Anytime is good, depending on what you want to do. Last fall I started shooting fall color around east TN (Great Smoky Mountains NP, Cherokee and Nantahala NF, and Cumberland […]


Less is More

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After a 14-year presence in multiple sites on the Web, I decided to consolidate my presence (and my life). I had a website to premiere my images, a website to present my workshops, a website to sell my books, a presence for my video, a website to sell prints, and a blog to talk about […]


Mississippi River on the low side

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Rob and I continued our adventures by making our way to the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers at a park run by the Missouri Department of Conservation. While exhibits showed the heighth of some of the most recent floods of the Mississippi River, we were more interested in the low side of the […]