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Nov 15, 2019
Tired and muddy. That’s what I was when the lighting bolt struck. I was staying for a long weekend in Badlands National Park when a strong thunderstorm came through. It was so bad that it would up flooding our campsite, forcing us to get our stuff and grab a hotel room for the night. After the worst of the storm had passed, we headed back out to see the sunset. Lighting was a subject that I hadn’t photographed yet. I took what seemed like countless shots trying to capture the lighting, luckily it was frequent. We moved around till after the sun went down, traveling to several different spots playing with different compositions. This particular photo was the third spot I set my camera down.
Sitting atop the dunes at Great Sand Dunes National Park is an experience I wouldn’t trade for anything. The short but steep hike up the sand dunes was not the easiest thing I’ve ever done but the end result was more than worth it. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a single sunset change a landscape in such varying ways as this one did. The way it altered the color of the landscape and how the shadows shifted, made it seem like the land itself was moving.
I knew this was going to be a good sunset early. I got everything setup and was waiting when all of a sudden It sounded like t.v static all around me. But how could that be possible? I was out camping in Voyageurs National Park and and we even had to take a canoe three-miles out to the campsite. The answer was above me, a giant swarm of gnats had come in from the lake. So I sit there trying not to get too creeped out and hoping they don’t drop down and get in the way of my shot. Lucky for me, they didn’t. I got the shots I needed then sprinted towards the fire and smoke for protection!
Howling with coyotes is always the first thing I think about when I see this photo. I had this spot picked out on my first drive around Theodore Roosevelt National Park. As I sat there by myself watching the sunset, I heard the sound of a coyote howling. That howl prompted another coyote, then another and so on until a group of coyotes throughout the park were howling together. So, if you can’t beat them, join them!
It was a long day as I stood on the edge of the mountain shelf looking down on Death Canyon, one I just finished hiking through. It was the third out of fives days where we were hiking around the Teton Mountain Range. My group and I managed to setup camp and get things situated just when sunset started. Luckily, I only had to walk a couple feet to witness and photograph this great view and beautiful sunset.
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