Sunday, April 12, 2015
Monday, March 2, 2015
|Mesquite Sand Dunes|
The dunes need a good windstorm to wipe away all the footprints. Still a fun place to visit and the best time before it gets too warm.
|Waves in the sand "Mesquite Dunes"|
Saturday, February 7, 2015
|Kyara Japanese Tapas|
Serena is a licensed clinical dietitian by trade so I am forced to eat healthy most of the time. That's a good thing otherwise I would be eating junk food constantly. Getting up for sunrise shots and driving long distances also takes a lot out of me. My drink of choice for those long hauls used to be Mountain Dew. I have binged on and off sodas most of my life but hopefully I have finally kicked the habit. That was one of my 2015 goals. The longest I have gone without a soda before was 3.5 years. I'm hoping this time will be forever. I feel better, my stomach feels better and I'm sure my teeth appreciate my 2015 goal. So now it's basically water, hot tea and ice tea. No alcohol, cigarettes or drugs either unless you count chocolate chip cookies. It's good to set goals especially as you get older, taking care of your body should be a priority to include an exercise routine.
While on the road it's hard to find a decent place to eat. There are too many McDonalds and Burger Kings. It doesn't mean we don't eat there, it just means we try really hard not to. Serena usually makes food to bring along and we cook on the road. I purchased an ARB 50 qt Fridge Freezer for the car that keeps the food & drinks very cold. It was a bit pricey but a perfect addition for long trips.
I like to check out Yelp before eating at a restaurant to see what the reviews say. There is nothing worse than being on a photo trip and ending up sick from a bad lunch or dinner. I have started to put reviews on Yelp, good or bad. Trip adviser is another good website to check out for hotels and things to see and do. I'm sure there are many others to include weather radar and other weather related sites. That sounds like a good topic for another post.
Anyway from time to time my post may not be entirely about photography as in this case. I wanted to tell you about our favorite Japanese Tapas Restaurant. It's called Kyara at 6555 South Jones Boulevard #120 here in Las Vegas. It's usually pretty busy in the evening so you may need a reservation. There are only about seven tables and there is also seating at the bar. The service is excellent and the staff are very friendly. After going a few times the staff knows what we like and drink, this place is a diamond in the ruff. Try the Kora Kora steak, it's one of my favorites. Serena is also a trained chef so it's hard to find a place that she thinks is worthy of going back. Kyara Japanese Tapas is always consistent in their food preparation, presentation and service. It's a place I can count on for a great meal. So the next time you're in Vegas check them out.
Monday, January 26, 2015
|Fresh snow in Oak Creek|
|West Fork, Oak Creek|
Sunday, January 25, 2015
|Frozen Grand Falls (Muddy Falls), Arizona|
I cancelled several photography trips in 2014 but in October our dog was attacked by a coyote in our back yard just before we were going to shoot in the Eastern Sierra's for fall colors. Other trips were cancelled as well as that one to include a birthday trip for me to White Pockets, something I'd been looking forward to for a year. Since October our dog has lost her right eye and we continue to struggle for her to keep her vision in her left eye. I don't take a family pet lightly. She is like a daughter to us. Others might give her away, bring her to a pound or worse yet put her down but I have a heart. When I take an animal in as my pet it is for their life or mine whichever ends first. Something called responsibility which seems to be lacking in today's society.
So here it is 2015! Our dog is finally well enough to be boarded although we are still working on saving the sight in her left eye. So we have gone on a couple of trips. Sedona, Arizona and Death Valley, California. It's not easy being a photographer for a lot of it is being a weatherman, navigator and a person with unlimited patience. I'm still working on all three and getting better at it but not all things are controllable in life.
On our way back home from Sedona on the fourth of January we had some nice clouds forming and the afternoon was rapidly coming to an end. We had the choice of heading North to Page, Arizona and the nearby Horseshoe Bend for a great sunset shot or I could head off the beaten path down an extremely muddy dirt road for miles, hmmm. Yes you guessed it the explorer in me decided to find the Grand Falls on the Navajo Reservation. First of all you don't follow the navigation in a Toyota 4 Runner. It once had me turning off of a bridge, in the middle of a bridge in San Diego and yes I have the latest nav update. Hey Toyota, how about partnering with Garmin! So after several failed attempts to use the navigation to find it I stopped at the only gas station in Leupp, Arizona and asked for directions to the Muddy Falls. The Navajo's running the store had a great laugh. I told them every place the navigation tells me to turn, the dirt road is closed. After giving me proper directions they informed me it was Grand Falls and not Muddy Falls. I guess that was pretty funny, I was just about laughed out of the store...so off we went.
So after traveling down a very muddy road we came to the Little Colorado River. I saw tire tracks going into the river and tracks coming out on the other side. The river was quite deep. After careful inspection I noticed what looked like either a cement road or some sort of cement dam large enough to hold a car. With water, ice and mud flowing over said road I decided to proceed over it. When we arrived at the Grand Falls it wasn't too grand. Most of what would have been flowing water was frozen. There was a small trickle of water in the far corner. Most of the photographs you'll see of this place are from where the small viewing huts are on the other side. We had a beautiful sunset that afternoon that went on for quite a while. We decided to leave to cross the water before it was dark. I didn't think it was worth sticking around and chance driving off the road into the river. It would have been one heck of a long cold walk back to the main road. That's how it goes sometimes. As for the car, I'm still cleaning red mud off of the bottom and in the wheel-wells. Toyota made this great 4 Runner and then put a billion crevices in the wheel-wells so your truck could keep all that mud with it which I imagine eventually turns the metal to rust.
This year is going to be better, I know it is. I'll keep telling myself that. Smile and keep going...guess I should have gone instead to Horseshoe Bend but then there's that timing thing again.