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  1. #1
    Learning more with every "click" mjs1973's Avatar
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    Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Amy and I took an extended weekend and headed for the north woods for a few days. We camped on Perch Lake in Northern Wisconsin with Holley, our black lab, and Jinjer, our golden retriever.

    My goal for this trip was to relax, and scout out a location for a photo trip for next spring. The main subject I was looking for was the common loon. It's a little too late for the loons to have chicks riding on their backs, but that's OK. I don't have any loon images in my portfolio, so just getting a nice photo or two was one of my goals.



    Another goal I had was to try to take photographs from a canoe. I want to purchase a kayak or a solo canoe to take photos from, and I thought this would be a good test. I rented a canoe and went out in search of the common loon. I was in luck as there were 2 loons on the lake. Photographing out of the canoe provided me with a way to get close enough to the birds to make some nice photographs, but it was a bit of a challenge. I used a monopod and turned my ISO up a bit to try to get a fast enough shutter speed to help avoid camera shake do to my use of a long lens. It took some time, and lots of patients, but I was happy with many of the images I created on the lake. I only had good light and good weather on one day, so I was glad that I went out when I did.



    Besides the loons, there was also an osprey nest along the lake. Without the canoe, I never would have found this. I didn't get many chances for osprey photos, but it's good to know for next spring’s trip.



    There were also beavers living in the lake. This was first noticed while relaxing on the shore as a beaver swam towards us. When I saw it getting closer, I went to the car to get my camera. As I was setting up, Jinjer saw the beaver and thought it would be a good idea to go investigate. The result was a wet dog, and no beaver. Jinjer appeared to have a lot of fun trying to find the beaver among all of the lily pads.



    I was fortunate enough to find the beaver later on while I was out in the canoe so I was able to get a few images. We also found a couple more beaver lodges while hiking to some other lakes nearby.



    I was able to enjoy two nice sunrises. I missed the most dramatic color of the first one, but I'm still very happy with the images I was able to create.



    The sunrise on the second day wasn't as colorful, but still a pleasure to watch.



    During the day the light was very harsh and it was a little too windy to be out in the canoe so decided to make some photographs with the intention of creating an HDR image once I got home.



    The sunrise on our last morning was not very colorful at all. It looked like it could storm at any moment, but it never did. I decided to experiment with zooming my lens during a long exposure. I kind of like the way this image tuned out. I think the effect adds to the ominous feel that the sky had that morning.



    All in all it was a very nice little getaway. The mosquitoes were pretty bad but once the wind picked up, they were gone. I wish the wind would have had the same effect on the ticks. We found dozens of them on our dogs, as well as ourselves. We are still picking them off of the dogs. I found 4 more on Jinjer tonight...
    Last edited by mjs1973; 07-02-2009 at 06:51 PM.
    Mike


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    "I thought that because fewer wolves meant more deer, that no wolves would mean hunters' paradise. But after seeing the green fire die, I sensed that neither the wolf nor the mountain agreed with such a view."
    Aldo Leopold

  2. #2
    Senior Member AgingEyes's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Must've been a very good trip, Mike !

    Love those scenic shots. I especially like the one you experimented with the zooming !

  3. #3
    project forum co-moderator Frog's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Nice stuff. I'm hoping to get away later in the summer just to explore and shoot. Has to be relaxing/fullfilling.
    Keep Shooting!

    CHECK OUT THE PHOTO PROJECT FORUM

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    Please refrain from editing my photos without asking.

  4. #4
    Nature/Wildlife Forum Co-Moderator Loupey's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Mike, thanks for sharing these and your experiences. I too have been looking at kayaks for some time to use as a photography tool. A bit more stable than canoes I think.

    Nice sunsets and I love the "zoomed" one. The others are very nice too.
    Please do not edit or repost my images.

    See Birds-On-A-Wire voted one of National Geographic's 18 Top Shots of 2009
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    See my website
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    .



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    What's a Loupe for anyway?
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  5. #5
    Learning more with every "click" mjs1973's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Thanks AE. Yes, it was a nice trip.

    Thanks Frog Get out there if you can. You will be happy you did.

    Thanks Loupey. I have been wanting a kayak for a couple of years now, but there always seems to be something more important that gets in the way. I like the kayak idea because they sit lower and would be easier to control. I think you would need an open cockpit in order to keep your camera handy. The canoe worked well, but was a bit too big for a single person. A solo canoe would have been much better than the 17 footer I had. When the savings account recovers, I will have to go to the local paddle shop and take some boats out for a spin to see how they handle.
    Mike


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    "I thought that because fewer wolves meant more deer, that no wolves would mean hunters' paradise. But after seeing the green fire die, I sensed that neither the wolf nor the mountain agreed with such a view."
    Aldo Leopold

  6. #6
    nature/wildlife co-moderator paulnj's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Those scenics are to die for! Wildlife images are good too!
    CAMERA BIRD NERD #1



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    BIRD NERD O'CANON

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  7. #7
    Learning more with every "click" mjs1973's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Thanks Paul, and thanks for the featured photo!
    Mike


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    "I thought that because fewer wolves meant more deer, that no wolves would mean hunters' paradise. But after seeing the green fire die, I sensed that neither the wolf nor the mountain agreed with such a view."
    Aldo Leopold

  8. #8
    Senior Member mn shutterbug's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Great series, Mike. I'm glad to see you finally got your loons. BTW, I wish you would have posted the images larger. Also, congrats on the well earned feature.
    Mike

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    Canon 30D X 2, Canon 100-400L, Thrift Fifty, Canon 18-55 IS 3rd generation lens plus 430 EX II flash and Better Beamer. :thumbsup:

  9. #9
    Learning more with every "click" mjs1973's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Thanks Mike. I did get some loon shots, but not quite what I was after. Hopefully I can get up north earlier in the season next spring.

    The images are linked from Flickr so they are a little smaller than I would have liked. If you click on the Blog link in my signature, you can see them bigger. The images in the blog are actually smaller, but if you click on them, you will get a larger version.
    Mike


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    "I thought that because fewer wolves meant more deer, that no wolves would mean hunters' paradise. But after seeing the green fire die, I sensed that neither the wolf nor the mountain agreed with such a view."
    Aldo Leopold

  10. #10
    Senior Member mn shutterbug's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    I just save them as 800 X 534 and then upload to Flickr. Then choose the largest size, which would be the 800 X 534 and use that one to display.
    Mike

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    Canon 30D X 2, Canon 100-400L, Thrift Fifty, Canon 18-55 IS 3rd generation lens plus 430 EX II flash and Better Beamer. :thumbsup:

  11. #11
    Senior Member Canon_Bob's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    The first loon is nice, but the scenics are just fantastic. Great series, and well deserved FP! Congrats!

  12. #12
    Member Daruba's Avatar
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    Re: Mini Vacation / Scouting Trip

    Nice series. The first is my favorite. I like you landscaping very much :thumbsup:
    "My name is "Dick", so what?"

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    Nikon Gear.

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