Al's Photography Blog

Al's Photography Blog
Pikes Peak As Seen From Our House

Monday, June 28, 2010

My World Tuesday - Colorado Springs Sister City

Colorado Springs has several cities around the world with which it maintains "sister city" relationships. The first of these relationships was created in 1962, with Fujiyoshida, Japan, and this gate and shrine (in the middle of a busy downtown road) commemorate this.
The My World Tuesday blog site contains lots more fascinating worldly snapshots so please visit.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Scenic Sunday - Ferry to Seattle

I'm just about out of scenic Seattle pictures, but here are some from the ferry ride from Bainbridge back to Seattle in the late afternoon. As you leave the dock Seattle is visible in the distance, partly obscured by the island.
Mount Rainier is visible in the far distance, although it was somewhat obscured by the atmosphere on this day.
Seattle draws closer until it fills the view.
I can't recommend strongly enough taking this ferry if you're visiting Seattle as it's a very inexpensive way to get a great view of the city and surrounding area. I also can't recommend enough visiting the Scenic Sunday blog as it's full of links to beautiful and varied photographs from around the world.
Scenic Sunday

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Smoky Skywatch Friday

We've had numerous wildfires in the state due to the extremely dry and windy condition. On Monday when I left the office the smell of smoke was quite noticeable (in fact there was a small grass fire behind my office building later that evening) and when I got home the haze was very visible. Looking up the sky was blue, but the haze lower down is actually smoke, not smog or clouds.
The closest major fire is on the other side of a mountain range so we're in no danger at this time, but these fires are a reminder of the danger of living in dry, forested area.

For more sky-themed photos, visit the Skywatch Friday page.

Monday, June 21, 2010

My World Tuesday - BreckConnect Gondola

For today's little part of my world, here are some photos of and from the BreckConnect gondola taken a few weeks ago. This is the recently-built gondola that takes a rider from the main ski area parking lots to the base of the ski runs.
Thanks to the My World Tuesday team that keeps this interesting meme active every week; please visit the linked site for lots of worlds.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Scenic Sunday - Royal Gorge Incline

A couple of people asked whether Socks actually hikes with me or whether I carry him. He comes on almost every hike I take, and despite his small size (7 pounds or 3.2 kg) he walks the whole way, even on 6 or 7 mile hikes. When we get home he's still got energy to play! The only time I carry him is if it's very hot and sunny, there's a gravel trail, and no shade, because it's just too hot so close to the ground for him. He scrambles up and down rocky sections better than I can! He'll drink water from my hand, or drink it from a stream. Sometimes it's just me and Socks, other times I've got one or more friends along, it depends on when I go.

One of the attractions as the Royal Gorge is an incline that takes you down 1,000 feet to the bottom of the gorge. It's on a 45 degree angle, as can be seen in these photos, taken near the top.
Here's a photo taken near the top while in the incline's car.
A railroad runs along the bottom, and we were lucky enough to see a train going by.
The aerial tram seems a long way up!
There are people going down the rapids in rafts and kayaks.
And finally, here's a view looking up the incline from the bottom.
If it doesn't make you too nervous, this is a must-do since it's included with the (not cheap) price of admission.
Scenic Sunday

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Skywatch Friday - Cloudy Mount Herman

We finally had some rainy weather move in late last week - it's rare not to see the sun, but we only caught a few peeks of it over the weekend. This week's Skywatch Friday post shows the clouds moving in over Mount Herman (elevation 9,063 feet, or 2,825 meters), which is visible over the ridge, its summit obscured. It's not a spectacular photo but I think but it's pretty in its own way; I'll post more photos from this hike before long.
I'm sure I'll climb it again this summer, as its one of my favorite local hikes. Thanks to the Skywatch Friday team for bringing us this great meme every week, please visit the main Skywatch Friday page for lots of great photos.

Monday, June 14, 2010

My World Tuesday - Socks on the Rocks

In case you don't know, Socks is our family dog, a little Pomeranian. The above shot was taken on a hike last week. The following one was taken in our house when he was in a playful mood. He's sitting in my lap as I'm writing this post.
For lots more worlds visit the My World Tuesday site.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Scenic Sunday - Wildflowers

The wildflowers aren't peaking yet but I still found some on a hike last weekend.
Scenic Sunday

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Skywatch Friday - Lightning at Night

Captured after dark with a 47-second exposure. This was one bolt of lightning that struck to the right of where the camera was pointed, as you can see by the shadows on the houses. The tree it hit exploded but luckily didn't catch fire.

For more exciting Skywatch Friday posts, visit the Skywatch Friday site. To see other pictures of lightning that I've captured, click on the Lightning label at the end of this post.

Monday, June 7, 2010

My World Tuesday - Uncle Wilber Fountain & Cubicle Cactus

In downtown Colorado Springs is the fun Uncle Wilber fountain. It's one of those areas where water shoots out of the ground, and every so often the fountain opens up shooting water everywhere. Needless to say, on a hot summer day the area is filled with kids, but this photo was taken in the early spring when it wasn't operating.
Right next to it is one of the Art On The Streets pieces, the Cubicle Cactus by Kat and Bob Tudor. I think it's an entertaining, shapely, and colorful sculpture, and perfect in its location.
For more photos showing interesting worlds from around the globe, visit the My World Tuesday page. And for this week's Skywatch Friday post I'll be putting up a nice lightning shot from Saturday night so check back for that!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Scenic Sunday - Bainbridge

While we were in the Seattle area, we spent a few hours on Bainbridge Island. My favorite part was the small harbor and beach.
The town itself was pretty.
And here's the restaurant at which we had an excellent Mexican meal.
Scenic Sunday

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Skywatch Friday - Threatening Clouds

For this week's Skywatch Friday entry, here are a couple of recent cloud shots. Lots of sky in these ones, I hope you like them.
Visit the main Skywatch Friday page for tons of great Skywatch photographs.
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