art, equipment review, landscape, nature, photography, random thought, travel, wildlife, writing

rocky mountain high | road-trip 2013

I have never been to Rock Mountain National Park.  Yeah… seriously.

With all of the locations I drive to regularly in New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, for some reason, I have never been.

It’s especially odd, now that I think of it, because of how (relatively) close and how stunningly beautiful I hear it is.

So, I’ve been planning to spend a week there at the end of June.

I will piggyback off a job I have in Telluride over the fourth, and a stock assignment in Big Bend National Park.

Adding in a few extra stops like Canyon de Chelley in Arizona, this thing has really turned into quite the road-trip…

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To top it all off, Canon is sending me a few lenses to evaluate, which I will review here on the blog… check back to see me put some exciting lenses to the test!

I am really looking forward to spending some quality time in phenomenally beautiful Rocky Mountain NP with Canon’s long awaited 500mm f/4L II and 24mm f/1.4L II.

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The closest I’ve been to RMNP was a backpacking trip a few friends and I took in 2008 to Indian Peaks Wilderness.

IPW is within Arapahoe National Forest and borders the southern edge of Rocky Mountain National Park.

I’ve been to a lot of beautiful places, but Indian Peaks Wilderness was certainly one of the most stunning.

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And then of course… like an old friend waiting for a long overdue visit… Big Bend.  Except for 2012, I have been at least once every year for the last 10+ years.

It’s a magical place.  With a character and an energy like no other place I’ve been, it has the ability to soothe ones soul.  It’s a perfect mixture of southwest desert and rugged mountains.

sunset over the chihuahuan desert, big bend national park, texas

Along with the lenses, I will be testing out some new filters, new techniques, and I hope it will be a rejuvenating experience.  And I want to share it with all of you…

So please, feel free to ask questions, give tips, make comments, and check back over the next several weeks for updates.  I will be sharing some of the secrets and tricks of the trade!

Cheers!

— andrew

all images and content © andrew r. slaton | photographer 2013

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art, photography, random thought, travel, writing

the fourth

this year, the fourth of july was really special.

the day started by walking up early, the giant san juan mountains surrounding us.

i was with good friends, my wife was on her way, and a day full of festivities awaited.

we started with fresh washington state oysters and bloody marys at 9 a.m.  thanks to jw…

then we all headed to main street to watch the parade!

we were quite festive…

the f-16s are always a crowd favorite.

and then the vets came… and i assure you that not one eye was dry.  these men sacrificed so much for all of us.

needless to say, they received a standing ovation from the multitudes.

not a bad backdrop to a fantastic day…

unreal.

and you can’t forget the “men without rhythm”.

once the parade ended, we all headed to the patio at rustico, one of our favorite italian restaurants in telluride (or anywhere for that matter).

my big “pouty” lips…  okay, so they’re not that pouty…  just really chapped.

then it was on to town park to throw some horseshoes!

it’s good to take a nap in the grass in between matches…

we all retired for a few hours to get a little rest before the fireworks that night.

and as always, the fireworks display is unbelievable in telluride.  i guess, just like everything else in this idyllic little mountain town.

it’s hard to go back to dallas and work when you’ve spent a dreamlike week in a place like telluride.  it always happens that way.

so, to combat the shock of such a harsh contrast of realities, Elle and i decided to head up to wyoming for another week starting july 5th!

good philosophy, i think.  but i have to admit in hindsight, it didn’t make the transition any easier…

all images and content © andrew r. slaton | photographer 2011

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travel, random thought, photography, writing, art

preview: july 4th, telluride

i can’t think of a better place to be for july 4th.  and of all the time i’ve spent in telluride, i’ve only experienced the 4th once… and it was 11 years ago when my friend john and i lived there.

so john invited us back this year to relive all the glory that is independence day in telluride!

and since i had the opportunity to spend some time in the southern san juan mountains of colorado, i of course had to work a little…

so here are some landscapes i shot during the week leading up to the celebration….

…4th photos to come soon…

all images and content © andrew r. slaton | photographer 2011

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photography, random thought, travel

renewal year

i’m not a fan of new years celebrations.  getting dressed up, paying inflated party fees, and sipping head-ache inducing champagne, is not my idea of ending or beginning any year.  so, a last minute decision placed me in big bend national park, alone, to ring in ’09.

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i climbed to the top of the dodson trail, on the outer chisos mountain loop, and received a clear view of the year passed and the year to come.

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my new year suite… a perfect little spot in the high mountain desert.  ocotillo surround and protect my tent.

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first cup of coffee of 2009.  what a beautiful morning… and hey… no headache!  i traded my tuxedo from the night before for the “german tourist” look – wool hiking socks and chacos.  sexy, huh?

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the mountains were magical as always.  it was a real treat to spend the first hours of 2009 in quiet reflection.

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i hiked up to cattail falls, a highlight of every one of my dozens of trips to this great park.  the flow was just a trickle… like usual.  but it was cool and calm in the small canyon.

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as i hiked down from the falls, i was again rewarded with an amazing view.  i am hopeful for 2009.  cliche or not, i am hopeful.

all images © andrew r. slaton | photographer 2008

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