Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Stormy landscapes in Denali Park

Autumn rain storm over the Plains of Murie, Denali National Park, Alaska
Canon 1Ds Mark III, 70-200mm 2.8L, 1/200 sec @f/8, ISO 100

Professional photographers who meet certain qualifications by the National Park Service are allowed to travel the Denali park road in their own vehicle for 10 days out of the summer. The only catch to this wonderful privilege is that only five permits are allowed each day, and nearly everyone wants the same dates: late August and early September. In effect, the selection process turns into a lottery, and if your name is drawn early enough, you get the days of your choosing. I was not lucky this year, however, due to a cancellation I was able to schedule a few days in late August.

While I always hope for clear skies when I'm there, mainly for the possibility to photograph Mt. McKinley, there is nothing better than the shifting light that afternoon storms brew in this mountainous region. The tundra was in explosive color as the blueberry and dwarf birch vegetation cast a crimson coat across the land. My wildlife photography options were pretty skimpy on this trip, but I did get a few landscapes that I like, this being one of them. So sorry it is such a small image here, click on it to see it bigger, I made it especially large so it can be appreciated.

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