I haven’t been to the river in a while so I wasn’t sure what I might find early on this beautiful summer morning in Eleven Mile Canyon. As I neared the bird habitat I was fortunate to spot a couple of mule deer does making their way up the canyon walls after an early morning drink. I quickly set my camera to shutter priority mode with a 1000th of a second dialed in. Deer pictures usually work well with a +1/3 exposure compensation so that’s what I used. When I stopped the truck and aimed my lens out the window, the deer increased their pace but stopped to look back for a couple of nice portraits 🙂
Next I came across a beautiful great blue heron which I am quite happy stayed around a few seconds so I could get some pictures before taking flight. For the portraits I risked a little motion blur by setting the shutter speed to around a 500th of a second to allow for a lower ISO value and less noise, while quickly going to a 1600th of a second for in flight pictures when I thought the great bird might take flight. I usually use a negative exposure compensation when shooting birds with some white feathers in their plume, but with the sun direction this time of year it worked out that +0 was the best value to use.
Finally as I was ready to exit the canyon I spotted yet another blue heron preening himself on the opposite bank. I decided to shoot a few seconds of video when I saw him do something I’d never seen a heron do before, he spread his wings like a giant buttercup, apparently in an effort to dry out his feathers in the warm morning sun.
All in all it was a great day even though the canyon was soon to be invaded by the hordes of weekend fishermen.
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