The Way I See It

Archive for the ‘national parks’ Category

Contemplating Rainier

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Contemplating the Mountain

Mountain View

She stepped into the frame, not noticing that there was someone several feet away. Click. “Oh, Pardon Me! Am I in your way?” “No, no!” I replied, “You’re fine.” “Okay, just checking, thank you.” She went back to her silent contemplation. I backed up a couple of steps. Click. Click-click. Her unexpected appearance in the frame was fortuitous, for it allowed me to add a bit of context into what would otherwise have turned out to be another tourist snap. We were at Sunrise Point, the you’re-almost-there just-above-the-treeline hairpin turn that gives visitors their first jaw-dropping view of the mountain and another 270-degrees of alpine panorama. Today, the sky is clear as can be with just a few odd fishtail-shaped clouds that accent the brilliant blue. Click. Click. Click.

And the mountain? Rainier, a dormant 13,211 foot (4,027 m) volcano about 50 miles southeast of Seattle. It’s massive white outline dominates the landscape for miles around and on a clear day, it can be seen from places as far away as Portland, Oregon and Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. Saturday was a pleasant, clear summer day so we decided to make the drive to Sunrise, on the eastern slope. I’d made this trip many times before. Yet the clean mountain air, the intoxicating fragrance of the pines,  the pristine alpine fauna and the jaw-dropping views did not fail to disappoint. It felt like my first pilgrimage all over again. Just like all the times before.

Sunrise Road

Sunrise Road

Written by xinapray

July 25, 2011 at 12:58 pm

Swept Away

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Swept Away

I made this image at Ruby Beach in the Olympic National Park. This body of water is the Pacific Ocean. And over there – waaay over there – behind the setting sun – lies Southern Russia  and Northern Japan.

It was quickly approaching sundown when I got to the trailhead. I opted to leave some of the gear (including the rubber boots) in the car. The part of the beach where I made this image is quite flat. The wash carries a long way and moves pretty quickly. I was pleased with some of the wave action that I was able to capture. But tromping back to the car in soggy socks and waterlogged hiking boots wasn’t real fun.  😉

Written by xinapray

February 12, 2011 at 10:29 pm

Ream Fisherfolk

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Our trip through the river and estuary of the park provided us with the opportunity to observe the fisher families at work. Once numbering in the hundreds, a sturdy few chose to remain when the area was declared a national park. They lead simple unhurried lives, living off whatever the sea and forest provide. Not the easiest of lives for sure, but whenever we came upon a family or group, we were treated to a friendly smile or wave. For me, this was the highlight of the trip out to Sihanoukville.

This set of images is dedicated to Chris – brother, fellow traveler and partner-in-crime. I look forward to our next adventure!

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Written by xinapray

January 23, 2011 at 12:16 am

Rugged Beauty

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Some images of the rugged beauty of the Preah Nihanouk “Ream” National Park. Very much unspoiled by the onslaught of modernization, the park is an amazing combination of tropical rainforest, mangrove swamp and tideland.

Off To Work







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January 10, 2011 at 11:37 pm

Storks and Stork-Bill

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I finally got around to processing the rest of the images from my trip to Cambodia last year. These two images were made at the Preah Sihanouk or Ream National Park, on the outskirts of Sihanoukville.

This first image is of a pair of Lesser Adjutant Storks, wading and feeding in the mud of the mangrove swamp (which covers a great deal of the park). These are not small birds. They’re about 4 feet (~1.2 m) tall, with wingspans of 6 to 7 feet (1.8 to 2.1 m).

Lesser Adjutant Storks


This second image is of a Stork-Billed Kingfisher. About a foot (~30 cm) tall, this noisy bird has spectacularly-colored plumage and coloring. This one was sitting at the top of a (fish) net stake. It was…well…fishing.

Stork-Billed Kingfisher

Written by xinapray

January 7, 2011 at 1:24 am

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