Sunday, August 18, 2013

1.) Mt. Hutton

      My most recent outdoor adventure took place earlier in the month with some friends on a quest to climb Mt. Hutton. This mountain's summit is a touch below 12,000 ft, and we began our two day adventure up the mountain at 7,900 ft. The first day only consisted of a few miles up to a nearby marsh with amazing scenery. Not only did we stop there because it was later in the day, but also so our lungs could adapt to to the higher elevation (we all live in the valley at about three hundred ft. elevation).

Here are the highlights of the first evening and night in this spectacular range:

 This Mountain Gartersnake (Thamnophis elegans elegans) would not cooperate for a picture so I had a splash scooping them out of the streams that run through the meadow in the above picture. For me, snakes and other reptiles are very fun to photograph and identify as a secondary target to insects. Unfortunately, this one was too active to get a naturally placed photograph.

 Top: Our dry patch of ground for pitching tents on the first night.
Middle: Omus laevis LeConte, 1866
Bottom: Pterostichus lama (Menetries, 1843)

Both of these ground beetles are ones I've awaited to photograph since I got into photography. I did get several others of the O. laevis, including a picture of a mating pair, but sadly none turned out like I anticipated. As if night photography is not difficult enough, it is without the proper equipment. These two pictures seemed to be the best, but I hope there are many more to come!