Welcome to today’s post with images from Alabama Hills. I’ll get back to that place in a moment. First, I’d like to discuss the unintended consequences of blogging.
One of my earliest posts ever was of a woman and her daughter on Nicollet Mall. They were homeless. I photographed the daughter and then posted a story and images on my blog. Long story short a gal in New Jersey found my post and recognized the mother as her old high school classmate and, I believe, they reconnected because of the blog post. I’ve cried telling this story to camera clubs many times. Thank you social media!
My most recent experience is more hilarious. In an earlier post I showed a panoramic image from Zabriskie Point. Apparently I found my way into an image shot by a very famous landscape photographer that morning at Zabriskie Point. Stephen Oachs, the famous photographer who’s images “grace” the pages of National Geographic and Outdoor Photographer Magazine, went 0n a Facebook rant about how another photographer walked into “his composition.” He put forth a challenge on Facebook to locate the individual who was so rude as to walk into his photo. With the stars aligned, one person was successful in finding my blog post and posting my name and web site on Mr. Oachs’ Facebook page. Our images were shot within moments of each other. Amazing. Mr. Oachs provided his image on Facebook and I was able to zoom enough to clearly identify the individual as me. I was wearing my Dark Horse Bar hoodie and was staring dumbfound at the scene, wondering how to shoot it. A few facts worth noting – I did not walk into “his” composition. My mates and I were first on the scene well before twilight. No one else was present. Hence, Mr. Oachs composed a shot with me in it and for that I am grateful. I can now say that I’ve been photographed by a very famous photographer. Also, since Mr. Oachs made a public campaign of identifying me I believe I ‘m due some royalties. Winking emoticon here.
Now, on to Alabama Hills, CA. This area is easily one of the more interesting places I’ve photographed, but is technically just outside Death Valley National Park.
Here is a geological description of the hills from Wikipedia:
“The rounded contours of the Alabamas contrast with the sharp ridges of the Sierra Nevada to the west. Though this might suggest that they formed from a different orogeny, the Alabamas are the same age as the nearby Sierras. The difference in wear can be accounted for by different patterns of erosion.
Mount Whitney, the tallest mountain in the contiguous United States, towers several thousand feet above this low range, which itself is 1,500 feet (460 m) above the floor of Owens Valley. However, gravity surveys indicate that the Owens Valley is filled with about 10,000 feet (3,000 m) of sediment and that the Alabamas are the tip of a very steep escarpment. This feature may have been created by many earthquakes similar to the 1872 Lone Pine earthquake which, in a single event, caused a vertical displacement of 15–20 feet.
There are two main types of rock exposed at Alabama Hills. One is an orange, drab weathered metamorphosed volcanic rock that is 150-200 million years old. The other type of rock exposed here is 90 million year old granite which weathers to potato-shaped large boulders, many of which stand on end due to spheroidal weathering acting on many nearly vertical joints in the rock.”
In my images you see these rock formations as well as a star trail shot. The star trail image was shot for 32 minutes with about a half moon providing all the foreground light. It also washed the star trails a little, but I like the shot nonetheless. I hope you enjoy today’s images and stories.