Multi-year photographic excursion

Discussion in 'Geographic Location' started by mikewhi, Jun 29, 2004.

  1. mikewhi

    mikewhi Member

    Messages:
    808
    Joined:
    May 22, 2004
    Location:
    Redmond, WA
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    When I retire (which won't be that many years from now), I plan on buying an RV and spending as many years on the road photographing as I can until the wanderlust leaves me (I expect about 5 years). I'd like to start getting ideas on areas to explore so I can draw out some sort itinerary. I'd like to setup the RV in one spot for a month or more (until I've tired of the spot) and use my Jeep for local exploring. I'll light-proof part of the RV so I can process film and make contact prints.

    I'd appreciate some help with ideas. I would like odeas other than the obvious ones like the Nat. Parks, etc. There are a lot of little known areas out there that are beauitful land scapeareas (like the Diablo Hills area in the general vicinity of Monterey, CA). There are the slot canyons around Page, AZ. These are the kind of areas that I'm looking for.

    So, if you've come across some nice but little know areas in your travels, I'd appreciate hearing about them.

    I particularly like Sand Dunes. I've been to these 1) Great Sand Dunes in Colorado; 2) Death Vallye; 3) Oregon, southern coast stretch. I would like to hear from anyone who has visited Oceano, White Sands or any other large stretch of dunes. I'd like to circle every good-sized area of dunes on a map so I can visit them all.

    I also like the rugged\rocky coast. I've been to Maine, Big Sur area, Oregon coastline (most of it). How about the Great Lakes areas - any great areas there? The Olympic Penninsula in Washington State (where I now live) is pretty good and some of the more interesting remote beaches on Indian Reservations are being opened to the public.

    I've been up and down the Eastern Sierras a few times and have of course been to Yosemite quite a few times.

    I've travelled to Mexico many times and my favorite place to photograph was San Miguel de Allende, but it's been over 10 years since I've been there. I would be open to RV travel in Mexico. I have driven many miles without incident there, including into very isolated backcountry areas.

    I have gone north to Canada a few times but frankly don't like the country that much. It's a pretty country, but it's infested with Canadians who don't like Americans very much and like to rip them off.

    I haven't done much photography in Europe and would like suggestions. I have to get to Tuscany before I die, that's for certain.

    I shoot 8x10, 4x10, 5x7 all b&w. I'm just getting into Pyro\Azo\Amidol to see what the fuss is all about.

    Thanks.

    -Mike
     
  2. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

    Messages:
    3,049
    Joined:
    May 15, 2004
    Location:
    Wisconsin, U
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Hey Mike!
    There are a lot of very nice dunes on the eastern shore of Lake Michigan (the Michigan side). Here in Wisconsin, there are not many dunes on the lake, but there are some nice barns & the cool sandstone formations of the Dells along the western part of the state.
    There are many waterfalls here & in the upper peninsula of Michigan (kind of like Washington without the mountains & ocean)! :D
    I'll bet if you check out various state's websites, you'll find some great stuff to plan your journey!
    Jeanette
     
  3. lee

    lee Member

    Messages:
    2,913
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Worth T
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    there is a sand dune park at Monahans, Texas on I 20 out in west Texas. I have been to White Sands and there the mineral is Gypsum and is very white. Late in the day or first light. Isn't there a book you can subscribe to called something like "Photographing America." It has info on all the state and national parks and is published in CA. For the National Park Service ask for the "old farts pass" (age 65) costs $10 and is good for the rest of your life and anyone in the vehicle gets in free also. That would be my recommendation.
     
  4. David R Munson

    David R Munson Member

    Messages:
    425
    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2003
    Location:
    Tokyo, Japan
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    Well, how's this. Let us know when you start this thing. Then I'll let you know where I happen to be at that time, and you can come pick me up. :D
     
  5. Sean

    Sean Admin Staff Member Admin

    Messages:
    9,296
    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2002
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Spend a while in the South Island of New Zealand, you'll think you died and went to heaven :smile:
     
  6. jim kirk jr.

    jim kirk jr. Member

    Messages:
    743
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Shooter:
    35mm
    Alaska....lived there for a while during the winter(longer than it sounds)and it was the most beautiful place i've every been.A good portion of the land in the state is govt. owned park land and there are only a few major roads.My sister is still there and I can get more Ideas from her but the coast alone is worth going there to see.Check out the areas around seward,Homer,Eagle river,yeah-Denali,Anchorage is okay to start but coming in from canada there are alot of old Russian areas and a great coastline along the southern areas next to Br.columbia.
     
  7. kwmullet

    kwmullet Subscriber

    Messages:
    889
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2004
    Location:
    Denton, TX,
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The idea that immediately springs to my mind -- one that I'd love to do in somewhat less ambitious fashion (like for a couple of weeks each year) would be to retrace some classic journey, doing portraits of the people who live on that path. Route 66, or the route taken by the two main characters in Zen and the Art of Mororcycle Maintenance might be good. Maybe a better idea would be to stock up on contingency food, water & hygene materials and eschew any kind of map or GPS and just go where the wind or the need for gas takes you.
     
  8. David R Munson

    David R Munson Member

    Messages:
    425
    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2003
    Location:
    Tokyo, Japan
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I still like the idea of picking a mountain range and photographing it from one end to the other.
     
  9. Jeremy

    Jeremy Member

    Messages:
    2,767
    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2002
    Location:
    Denton, TX
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Personally, I'm not going to wait until I retire, but my working day as a professional lottery winner is very short--if the jackpot is large enough I really only have to work once :smile: But I have the same idea--I told Fugazi Dave he could come if he played nice.

    I'm jealous because the odds are 1 in 48million that I'll get to do this in the next 40 years.
     
  10. BWGirl

    BWGirl Member

    Messages:
    3,049
    Joined:
    May 15, 2004
    Location:
    Wisconsin, U
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    You know...Jim Kirk jr's comments about Alaska made me think of something... If you want to take pictures of something that looks like a sand dune, there is nothing like a good 24"-36" base of snow. The only difference... snow sparkles like diamonds in the sunlight! So, maybe Minnesota, Wisconsin or Upper Michigan for your winter photos!
    Jeanette
     
  11. jbj

    jbj Member

    Messages:
    87
    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2003
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    If you're in Washington and plan on heading south/east then Utah has many amazing places to explore. I'm not talking about the five national parks in Utah, which are usually very crowded and expensive but more like Grand Gulch and environs in southern Utah, San Rafael Swell, Coral Pink Sand dunes, Little Sahara Sand dunes, Uinta and Wasatch moutain ranges, etc. An endless array of options for exploring and photography all year round.
     
  12. photomc

    photomc Member

    Messages:
    3,575
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2003
    Location:
    Texas
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Let's see should I tell you the places I've been or the ones I want to go to!!!

    The 4 corners region - CO/UT/AZ/NM I could spend a couple of years and not see everything. BIG 2nd to Lee's comments about White Sands, was there last around 1967, but very cool place and not that far from Monahans - largest forest in the US, no kidding - Harvard Oaks, get to maybe 3-4 feet tall. UT has Canyon Lands, Brice, Cedar Breaks, the Staircase. Also, in Norther AZ is Navajo NM, Canyon de Chelly (one of my personal favs), Chaco Canyon in NM along with Aztec, Angel Peak, Bitsi Wilderness. Move over to eastern NM and the road from Wagon Mound to Roy to Glenario - See What You Did..got me started and my wife will tell you, once I start..this is country I really love..Oh! Don't forget about Palo Duro Canyon near Amarillo, 2nd only to the Grand Canyon - would have been NP if it weren't for the Grand Canyon. Let's see the Rio Hondo near Taos, Rio Grand Gorge same area..maybe trace the Rio Grande from is it's source near Alamosa, Co (check out the sand dunes) all the way down to the Gulf of Mexico..

    See what I mean...buy lots of maps, atlas, and don't forget to check out the store at any National Park or the BLM...I'll stop now..but could go on and on..and yet there is still so much to see and Ireland/Scotland/Wales, .....
     
  13. jd callow

    jd callow Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    8,003
    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2003
    Location:
    Milan
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    Sand dunes...

    Sleeping bear national shore line.
     
  14. olecowboy

    olecowboy Member

    Messages:
    27
    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2003
    Location:
    New Brunswic
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    I have gone north to Canada a few times but frankly don't like the country that much. It's a pretty country, but it's infested with Canadians who don't like Americans very much and like to rip them off.
    =============

    I'm surprised Blansky hasn't picked up on this. The only Americans we rip off, Mike, are the ugly ones. They're the only ones we don't like too. But thanks for your kind words anyway. And you're right. It is a very pretty country infested with some very good people. You could do worse than spending some time up here getting to know some of us.
     
  15. lee

    lee Member

    Messages:
    2,913
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Worth T
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    Mike said rudely, "I have gone north to Canada a few times but frankly don't like the country that much. It's a pretty country, but it's infested with Canadians who don't like Americans very much and like to rip them off."

    With that type of attitude, please disregard the post that I contributed to your question. I don't want people in Texas that have this sort of attitude.

    lee\c
     
  16. mikewhi

    mikewhi Member

    Messages:
    808
    Joined:
    May 22, 2004
    Location:
    Redmond, WA
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    With that type of attitude, please disregard the post that I contributed to your question. I don't want people in Texas that have this sort of attitude.

    lee\c[/QUOTE]

    Too late. You already have millions there with MUCH worse attitudes than mine. Any what's so wrong about generally not liking a country's people very much, anyway? If you have the right to not like people 'like me', then I have the right to not like the types of people I've run into up north. I think you should stay out of WA - I don't like having people with your sort of attitude here. :smile:
     
  17. mark

    mark Member

    Messages:
    5,264
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2003
    Avoid Antelope canyon. It is a tourist trap now. There are plenty of free slot canyons. Since I live in the four corners region I am a bit partial. The above post is right you would never be able to photo all of it. Sand Dunes NP in Colorado is really cool.

    I have a billion years before retirement so I am jealous.
     
  18. mikewhi

    mikewhi Member

    Messages:
    808
    Joined:
    May 22, 2004
    Location:
    Redmond, WA
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    I have to Antelope Canyon once over 10 years ago just before they started charging and it becoming a tourist trap. It was vertaily beauitful, though. I have heard that there are other slot canyons in the area and I would certainly be interested in hearing about where to find them (private message if you want). I have done some repelling in the Army so I'm comfortable with that whole thing, even tying my own Swiss seat from a piece of rope. So if access is that tough, I can make it. I know that north of Page there are some canyons that you can hike into but I have never gone in that far. This is defenitely the kind of info I would like to get as these are the places I must visit before I'm too old to carry around an 8x10 outfit. Can you pinpoint map locations, GPS numbers, names of guides to contact or anything else? I would make preliminary trips down there before I retire to scout them out, too.

    Thanks.

    -Mike
     
  19. Ole

    Ole Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Messages:
    9,281
    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2002
    Location:
    Bergen, Norw
    Shooter:
    Large Format
    When you tire of Tuscany, head north. when you reach Norway, turn left (west). Then north along the coast - all the way to the Russian border. If you have enough film, you won't have enough time - and vice versa.
     
  20. Les McLean

    Les McLean Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,609
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2002
    Location:
    Northern Eng
    Shooter:
    Multi Format
    The Cottonwood Trail, just off highway 89 between Page AZ and Kanab in Utah is worth a visit. Round Valley Draw is a slot canyon in that area but there are many other interesting locations. The Cottonwood Trail takes you to Kodakchrome Basin, not worth a visit IMO and the on to Bryce and Zion. There are a number of books by Jack Kelsey that chart the Four Corners area including all the slot canyons. I also have a book, Hiking the Escalante by Rudi Lambrechtse, that gives detailed instructions about walks and interesting photographic locations in the Escalante Grand Staircase National Monument. If you do go into that area be careful of sudden rainstorms and flash floods I once got stuck in there for a couple of days because of sudden storms.

    If you make it to the UK head straight for the North West of Scotland, it's compact compared to the US but it is breathtakingly beautiful and sometimes very wet.

    I wish you good travel and even better light.
     
  21. Annemarieke

    Annemarieke Member

    Messages:
    747
    Joined:
    May 27, 2003
    Location:
    near Amsterd
    Shooter:
    Medium Format
    A bit difficult to drive to, but I've heard that the sand dunes in Maspalomas, Gran Canaria (part of the Canary Isles off the west coast of Africa, but officially part of Spain) are very beautiful. Maybe you could fly out there from one of the European countries.
     
  22. mark

    mark Member

    Messages:
    5,264
    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2003
    Hey Les.
    Getting stuck in the Escalante must be a common thing. My father in law and I got stuck and had to hike out 20 something miles to the town of Escalante.
     
  23. mikewhi

    mikewhi Member

    Messages:
    808
    Joined:
    May 22, 2004
    Location:
    Redmond, WA
    Shooter:
    8x10 Format
    Hi Les:

    This is exactly the type of helpful in fo I am hoping to get. I have stayed in Kanab once and hiked part of the Paria canyon\river or whatever it was. I remember walking thru a lot of water and ruining a pair of shoes. It was very nice but we had to hike a long way in before the canyon started to narrow and get interesting. From there, we went into Page and found Antelope Canyon. I looked up some of the books you mentioned on Amazone and it sounds like great information. I camped somewhere in Escalanted once I recall it as being a beauitful area.

    This thread is generating some interesting information. I think it is becoming worthy of one new thread per state with people adding interesting information for each staate the live in or know about. It may make a useful research resource for people on APUG.

    Thanks.

    -Mike
     
  24. DrPhil

    DrPhil Member

    Messages:
    169
    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2003
    Location:
    Indiana
    Shooter:
    4x5 Format
    Alaska also has sand dunes. They are in the northwest corner of the state. Very fw people ever go there.

    My top locations would be:

    Alaska
    Wrangell St. Elias - Make sure you get into the park a ways. Gota love Alaska bush pilots
    Kenai Penninsula
    Denali NP - WOnder lake is neat; however, get a flight onto the Kahiltna or Ruth Glacier. Talkeetna Air Taxi regularly flys photographers onto the glaciers. If you're experienced at glacier travel, have them drop you off and pick you up later. See the mtns lit up by the low angle northern sun is almost spiritual (and I'm an agnostic!)
    Lake Clark National Park
    Glacier Bay - Kayaking is better than the silly cruise ships. Also make sure to wonder around above haines and skagway. Just into Canada from skagway is a little village called atlin. I could spen another month there.
    The coast of SE Alaska and B.C. is hard to get to. However, the interior of B.C. is like heaven.
    Someday I'm going to make it to gates of the arctic and katmai.

    Canada
    As mentioned above. B.C. is awesome. The border with Alberta is home of some of the nicest scenery on earth. I never tire of Banff and Jasper; however, tons of people to deal with. Glacier (not Montana), Yoho, and kootenay are good alternatives. Banff and Jasper are great after the summer holiday is over.

    Can't forget Pacific Rim NP on Vancouver Island. Take the time to hike the West Coast Trail. I'd love to go back tih my 4x5.

    Pacific NW U.S.
    Olympic NP - Hurricane Ridge and the Hoh rain forest are must-see spots. Several beaches were also really nice. Somebody here probably knows the names as I've forgotten them.
    Cascade NP and area around. Mts. Baker and Shucksan are great. You could spend a week on hwy 20 as well.
    Mt. Rainier - Another busy place. I think the best way is to hike from the higher elevation ranger stations. One of the best (IMHO) was from paradise. This is also where they start climbing to the summit.
    Crater Lake and St Helens are good too. I can't see spending more than a day at St. Helens. Crater lake deserves a week or more.

    California
    I really like the area around Shasta and Lassen. Shasta is really nice in the winter and spring. Bumpass hell and kings creek area in lassen are great. My best images from Shasta are from the hwy going East away from Shasta.
    The sierras, owens and panamint, and death valley all deserve a good portion of your time. I love early fall in the sierras as everyone has gone home. Fall and spring are best for owens, panamint, and death valleys.
    I haven't spent much time at redwoods NP; however, I've seen some great images from the Ca. Coast. When I move back west I'm going to spend some time there.

    North American Deserts
    Great Basin - One of my favorite places (yes, I have lots of them) is great basin NP. Some beautiful images from partway up the wheeler peak trail. Mt Charlston above vegas is nice. As is the valley of fire. Further north the salt playas along I80 going to SLC are really neat.
    Colorado Plateau - This area deserves a year or more to itself. Can you say Zion, Bryce, Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Grand Canyon, Monument Valley, Goosenecks (personal fav), and Canyon de chelly? I got one of my masters at NAU and wish I had stayed.
    Southern Deserts - Sometimes referred to as mojave desert. Joshua Tree and the large dune fields outside of el centro are great. Mojave national scenic preserve is also worth visiting. You'll like the Kelso dunes near there. The Dumont dunes are also nearby. Not far from baker. Also lumped in here is Saguaro NP. This is another neat place. Lot of opportunities to photograph the classic Saguaro Cactus. Along the border and going into Mexico is a bunch of neat stuff too.
    Baja Ca. - The drive to the tip of Baja is really nice. Mulege on the Sea of Cortez is a great place to stop as well.

    Rockies
    Northern - Glacier, Yellowstone and the Tetons. However, there's alot more neat places to visit. The sawtooths are a hidden gem. They won't be for much longer though. Ketchum wants to be the next Aspen:sad:
    Mid - When I was sixteen I moved to RMNP. Spent several years there and loved it. Estes Park, the gateway town has grown a bit. Colorado has a bunch of other hidden gems.
    Southern - I've never cared for New Mexico. However, Guadalupe mtns and Big Bend are neat places to visit. White sands is pretty cool too. I'm much happier up near four corners though.

    Great Lakes
    I currently live near lake michigan. Theres some neat stuff around here. The UP of Michigan is really cool. I'm off to Isle Royale in a few weeks. Along the west coast of Lower michigan is some really neat national lakeshores. However, I don't care much for the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.

    Well anyways, these are my picks off the top of my head. I'm sure that I'll think of more later.