My visits to Rainier usually involve the Paradise side. This year I’ve decided to branch out a bit and explore Sunrise. I spent some time there the other night and captured a nice timelapse of the clouds moving over the mountain towards sunset. I felt like the Zeiss 85mm Otus lens provided a nice tight perspective of the scene, with meadows in the foreground
A bit of timelapse video from a recent visit to Lake Tipsoo. Nicely thawing out as you can see. Sony a7r II and Zeiss 16-35mm
So I got back from going down to Rainier Friday night to see how the lakes were thawing. Turns out they are amazing so I will be going back down next week early for some sunrise. Highlights of the Friday the 13th trip:
– Leaving at 1pm wasn’t early enough – still bad traffic down 167
– Lots of people in the park
– I get to Reflection Lakes and they appear mostly frozen but a few thawed spots. I hike out to one and get some nice shots. I see this guy watching me and sure enough once I get back to the road he pounces with all these questions ie Is it safe? (maybe) Did you get a reflection? (yes). You can tell he’s been studying this situation for about an hour or more.
– I drive down to the Snow Lake trailhead and two guys are parked there happily smoking. Turns out they are from the South. Of course, who else smokes in the park? 🙂
– I hike out to the lake in my Sorels. There is no trail but some faint bootprints. I eventually find my way and the lake is gorgeous. I stay til sunset and get some great shots. I wander over through the brush to this 1000 foot sheer drop and get some nice shots but kinda regret the risk. I also manage to butt dial my sister which is surprising that I got cell reception and hearing her voice from my pocket was funny.
– I decide to hike back before its pitch black even though I have my headlamp. My route goes straight up this steep hill but I find my way. I punch through some snow and land in a creek but am still dry. I find this steep trail down to the road and it works.
– Driving back down out of the park I run into these two kids hiking back in darkness. The girl has made a crutch out of a stick since she sprained her ankle. I gave them a ride to their car at Longmire.
– Driving past Alder at 60-ish mph, a deer wanders onto the road. I manage to swerve and miss it.
– Driving through Spanaway and Parkland – what a twilight zone of crushed dreams 🙂
whew…home at 1130
As the in-house photographer for the Columbia Center’s Sky View Observatory, I have a bit of experience shooting through glass to get photos of the awesome city view. Reading reviews of people’s experiences/frustrations there and at other similar properties around the world, I would like to share some of the expertise I’ve gained over the years shooting at SVO.
Basically, the issue is the reflections in the windows created by interior lighting. My solution for this doesn’t involve filters or anything in-camera. The work around involves bringing a black cloth. This can be a 2×2 foot piece of black cloth bought at a fabric store which is what I carry or a scarf, jacket, or even an umbrella cover like I saw last night up there. It also helps to be wearing something dark. Try to avoid the gold lame sequin dress look. It doesn’t help.
Recently I have added a new tool, the LensSkirt. This beauty slips around the lens and attaches to the glass with four suction cups. Except for the widest of lenses, say 10mm, its awesome. It also works great in airplanes and helicopters. LensSkirt on Amazon
If you didn’t bring a tripod, set your camera on the ledge, use timer release and then cover it with the cloth. If you did bring a tripod, you can check out my technique and or use something of your own. Notice how the cloth is rolled up, wrapped around the lens up to the glass and then the ends cross over the legs of the tripod. I usually check below the lens for light leak as with wide angle lenses, that’s where the reflections creep in. In addition, notice how my tripod legs are unextended and perched on the railing with one leg down, so as to get closer to the glass.
A recent favorite:
…and two short timelapses:
I hope this helps. Please feel free to contact me with questions or ask if you see me at SVO. I helped 3 people last night get better shots and that gave me the idea to write this.