High Plains and Misdemeanors

A trip through what the USGS calls 13d - the High Plains, at least part of the part in Eastern Colorado.  First that and then Denver.  Four days with snaps, here is the rota:

Day 1: Genoa, Arriba, Flagler, Siebert, Vona, Stafford

Day 2: Cheyenne Wells, Kit Carson, Wild Horse, Hugo, Denver (from Hotel)

Day 3: Kiowa, Calhan, Ramah, Simla, Matheson, Denver (Lo Do and Da Vita HQ)

Day 4: Denver (Colfax in Goosetown, a few residential snaps, a few in Cherry Creek)

Click on the snaps below to see the contact sheets - The captions indicate the days.  Great weather, until the typical Colorado afternoon cloudbursts. All with the A7r and mostly with the Sony/Ziess 55 1.8.  The Denver Lo Do snaps with the Nikon 20. Back to the grindstone early in the AM.

Slow uploads from the hotel, so likely another hour before they are all uploaded.  Not very consistent with the thinly curated contact sheet approach.

Day 1: Vona, CODay 2: Cheyenne Wells, CODay 3: Ramah, CODay 4: Goosetown, Colfax Avenue, Denver

The trains they don't run no mo...

Union Station Denver — Sunday morning.

Sign over the door says Amtrak has moved to a cinder block building a fews blocks away.  5D Mk II, TSE-45, shifted, ISO 200, f/3.2, 1/3200, -1ev.

Everybody got baggage.  5D Mk II, TSE-45, shifted, ISO 1600, f/8.0, 1/60.

 5D Mk II, TSE-45, shifted, ISO 1600, f/8.0, 1/80.

Be needin' to send a Telegram.  5D Mk II, TSE-45, shifted, ISO 1600, f/8.0, 1/60.

and use a pay phone too.  5D Mk II, TSE-45, shifted, ISO 1600, f/8.0, 1/60.

Where have all the passengers gone, long time passing.  5D Mk II, TSE-45, tilted, ISO 1600, f/2.8, 1/800.

A sharp canopy.  5D Mk II, TSE-45, shifted, ISO 200, f/2.8, 1/1000, -1.67ev.

Two flat tires seems apropos given the trains don't run no mo. 5D Mk II, TSE-45, shifted, ISO 200, f/2.8, 1/1000.

Looking down Wynkoop Street, toward Coors Field.  Done with the station — off to the alleys. 5D Mk II, TSE-45, shifted, ISO 200, f/8.0, 1/200.

July 4th 2006

After the storm, Leadville, CO.  Altitude, two miles high.  Attitude, well that is another story. Geographically, 40 miles from Vail, 60 miles from Aspen, nevertheless nowhere close to either.

Canon 5D, 24-70mm f/2.8L, f/8.0, 45mm, ISO 400, 1/160.

This one from before the storm. Canon 5D, 24-70mm f/2.8L, f/20.0, 54mm, ISO 100, 1/40.  Diffraction, what diffraction.  Who knows why it was f/20.0.  Obviously on the Gitzo.

Great Sands Dune NP approach

From the approach road, a few miles away.  The dunes are about 750' high, the white between the clouds and the dunes is blowing sand. Sangre de Christo range in the background.  The name, meaning "blood of Christ", is said to come from the red color of the range at some sunrises and sunsets, especially when the mountains are covered with snow.

7D, 24-70mm f/2.8L, ISO 400, f8.0. Three shot HDR.


Bessemer, CO.  Across I25 from CF&I.  Lot handy for parking while shooting CF&I from the I25 overpass.  Great colors, but I guess Yelpers! have discovered Bessemer yet!

7D with the 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L which just happened to be on the camera.  Thought maybe not the best place to be changing lenses.  ISO 400, f/8.0.  Three shot HDR.


somewhat reminiscent of the 2006 Nebraska snap that got a runner up in a AAA contest.  Both happenstance, this on the way to Great Sand Dunes National Park the Nebraska one en route to the Ogalalla National Grasslands.  I guess I get better stuff by accident on the way to to places that only sometimes work for me.

Off CO 17 on LN6N north of Alamosa.  5D Mk II, 17-40mm f/4L @40mm, ISO 100, f/8.0, three shot HDR, handheld, out the Hertz SUV window.

Off NE 2, West of Hemingford, NE, ZCBJ Lodge #298, 5D with 17-40mm f/4L @ 40mm, ISO 100, f/16, on the Gitzo, July '06.

Fairplay bound

en route to Fairplay from Buena Vista, across the stunning South Park, the 5D Mk II can't be found on the rear seat floor.  So we pull over in front of a ranch gate.  Randomly, it turns out to be a ranch founded in 1862 and still in the same family.

We spent the next several minutes of the ride, yacking about how cool it would be the day you found out that someday you would be running the family ranch.  Anyway... turns out this place, the Salt Works Ranch, is a big deal.  So is Mr. Hall and the family.  Read about how Hall, astonishingly a Mayflower descendent, found his way from New York to South Park here, fascinating. 

Charles L. Hall established one of Colorado’s earliest industrial enterprises, The Colorado Salt Works, on his ranch west of Hartsel in 1862. By 1868, this business was producing 4,000 pounds of salt daily, much of it for use in processing gold ore. Hall’s son-in-law, Thomas McQuaid, built the Salt Works Ranch into one of Colorado’s largest cattle operations, comprising some 80,000 acres. Salt Works Ranch is still owned by descendants of Charles Hall and is also on the National Register of Historic Places.

5d Mk II, 17-40 f/4.0L @ 17mm, ISO 100, f/11.0, 1/40.


Colorado Fuel and Iron, Bessemer (Pueblo), CO.  One of the first shots of a day meandering over a big chunck of Colorado.  A warm up for the Carrie Furnace Tour, in Rankin, PA, next Saturday.  Snapped from a bridge spanning I25.  More, very varied snaps to come from the rest of the day.

7D, 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L, because it happened to be on the camera.  Silver Efex Pro B&W conversion. Again a less than stunning downsizing for the blog post.

Castlewood Canyon

State Park, south of Franktown, east of Castle Rock and at the very end of the plains.

Most with the 5d Mk II mounting the 24-70 f/2.8L and the 17-40 f/4.0L, the picnic shot with the 7D and the 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L. 

The east side of the Park, HDR processed

The Lucas Homestead (west side) — not much between here and Kansas actually not much between the front windows and the Mississippi

Tree in front of the Lucas house.  This image down sizes horribly

South side of the Lucas house, HDR processed

Picnic on the East side, the tarp is to block the persistent wind.  Lots of local knowledge

Simulated Picture

Because I am off to Colorado for the week, a Colorado snap.  Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs via a really, really early start to be there for sunrise in March of '06.  Cropped 16:9 like HD TV because this shot (well... actually someone else's like it) was used for a couple years ('08 - '09 or so) by Samsung as the "Simulated Picture" in their HD TV ads.  Oughta know — all of the TVs, here atop Butcher's Hill (there are several of them) are Samsung's of that vintage.

Unforntuately, I buy Apple stuff instead of Apple stock and I buy Samsung TVs instead of selling them snaps, oh well... so much for monetization.

24-70mm f/2.8L on the 5D, @ f/22, 1/4, ISO 320 on the Gitzo.  Weird settings but it was early.