Summer on the River

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.

Also don’t forget to check out my books and calendars on Lulu Press and Amazon including my latest, “Wildlife Photography in the Colorado Rockies”!

Elk Herd on a Beautiful Rocky Mountain Evening

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