Salmon Cascades in Sol Duc Valley, Olympic National Park

Sol Duc Splash

THIS STORY ORIGINALLY APPEARED AT SCOUT.COM If you’ve ever been photographically challenged by the likes of the indifferent dog, recalcitrant relative or churlish child, try Mother Nature on for size. She can be as fickle as any subject, requiring planning, alternatives and flexibility. To wit, I recently visited my “home” national park, Olympic (Wash.), with the goal of shooting Sol Duc Falls, one of the most photographed waterfalls anywhere. The weather was supposed to be cooperative – cloudy, which is the usual state of affairs in the Pacific Northwest, even in the spring and summer. Clouds and forest are allies when photographing moving water, which we’ll discuss in a moment. However, I failed to come up with anything special, even after returning early the next morning. On the access road out, I stopped at a marked spot, “Salmon Cascades,” that I reflexively passed three times before because of a camera icon on the sign, which said to me that everybody and their brother made a cheap picture there. … [Read More...]

799px-Los_Angeles_Clippers_logo

Less than Sterling

Gifted with an opportunity to seize and shape a defining moment in their sport’s history, they pondered and met and schemed. They geared up and took aim. And on Sunday night in Oakland, the players of the Los Angeles Clippers shot a figurative air ball. Wading amid the cultural rip tide created by their owner, Donald Sterling, his most prized employees assembled on the court before their playoff game against the Golden State Warriors, and deposited their warmup jackets in a pile to reveal practice shirts turned inside out, hiding the team logo. But, when push came to shove, they reported dutifully for the opening tip, played and lost a game, and not even for a second did the NBA cash machine cease dispensing dollars. So, for an extremely critical news cycle, the toxic, racist comments attributed to Sterling provoked no repercussions of substance. There was outrage, of course. The vast One-Nameness – Magic (Johnson), Michael (Jordan) and Lebron (James) – stepped forward. But such is the mathematics of our times: Outrage minus a hit to the pocketbook equals meaningless … [Read More...]

Thousands of Snow Geese make the mutual decison to leave.

Snow Goose Frenzy

You likely will hear them before you see them. When thousands of Snow Geese make the mutual decision to move, even if it's only a few hundred yards, the resulting cacophonous frenzy is like no other, at least in nature. About 75 miles south of where you see Snow Geese in the Puget Sound region is CenturyLink Field, after all, home of the loud-decibeled 12th Man. … [Read More...]

Photography Buzz

Sunrise at Sprague Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Gambling on Sunrise

This piece originally appeared at Scout.com Outdoor photography is probably not for the financially meek. In addition to all the gear and travel, it’s also going to cost a good 10 of your usual 40 winks. That’s because purveyors of the heavy lidded lifestyle swear … [Read More...]

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The uncomfortable boosterism in media.

Super Conflicted

Two summers ago, I was on my feet at Safeco Field only because it was the only way to see. As Felix Hernandez was putting the finishing touches on a perfect game on Aug. 15, 2012, the woman next to me began to weep. Her boyfriend turned to me and said, in a concerned tone, “It’s OK to look happy about this.” But I struggled with that sentiment, … [Read More...]

A juvenile Bald Eagle surveys the West 90 parcel in Samish Flats.

Hawking Homework

I know from experience that Bald Eagles are masters of the long chill. I once observed a nesting pair through the viewfinder of my camera, waiting at least three hours for something to happen. A lot happened, if you consider a change in gaze or slight settle on a branch "something." That's why the Bald Eagle may not have been the best subject … [Read More...]

Scene of the crime.

22 (semi) Brief Thoughts About Why I’m Mad at Richard Sherman

1. Richard Sherman made a marvelously athletic, immaculately timed play to save Seattle’s 23-17 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in an NFC Championship game that instantly is labeled a “classic” and sends the Seahawks to the first and maybe only Super Bowl that will take place in the New York mega-media market. Seconds later, Sherman stalked … [Read More...]

A Short-Eared Owl on Samish Flats.

Before the (Sea)Hawks, an Owl

For some reason, the Short-Eared Owl has been fairly elusive photographic quarry for me. I've now been photographing birds, off and on, for almost a year now. I started with a class in Padilla Bay from my friend Paul Bannick, during which one of the participants mentioned this curious bird. From that moment, I was determined to photograph one. I … [Read More...]

The hammer's about to come down at SAM.

Seattle Shows Its (Seahawk) Colors

My wife Florangela got the brilliant idea that I ought to photograph various ways that Seattle was showing its Seahawk colors in advance of Saturday's division playoff game here against the New Orleans Saints. I had planned on staying warm and dry, but the idea grew on me. So I'm presenting the images a couple ways - via slideshow above and … [Read More...]

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