I didn’t know it when I awoke, but today would be all about photographing bald eagles and the last picture of 2022. It was a pretty good day of Colorado bald eagle photography at Eleven Mile Canyon. I left before sunrise for the Canyon in hopes that I would get some good eagle pictures on my last day of 2022.
Monochrome photography with my old Canon A-1
I also took along my Canon A-1 film camera with some Ilford HP-5 monochrome film loaded in case there would be a beautiful shot of the river that might look good in black and white. Indeed, recent snows and cold weather have created a beautiful snowy and icy scene along the frozen river, begging to be photographed with black and white film. It was fun to get out the old Sekonic incident meter and shoot some old school pictures. When my film skills get rusty I somehow feel like less of a photographer so I had fun shooting with my 40 year old gear! I didn’t complete the entire roll of 36 exposures though, so reviewing those images will have to wait. The river was beautiful as the golden glow of morning sunlight spilled onto the water, so I made sure to get a few captures with my Canon R7.
Colorado Bald Eagle Photography
I didn’t see any eagles on my way upstream or at the bend on the way back down. I was getting worried that recent snowstorms had altered their habits when I spotted a handsome baldy. The sun had not yet cleared the western wall of the canyon so there wasn’t a lot of light and it was dang cold standing there waiting for him to fly! Most of the crowd of photographers had given up by the time he finally took flight, so I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who got the shot!
I knew my ISO values were very high before sunrise and I was worried my 32mp APSC sensor might make a noisy mess of the image but I’m happy to report that even at ISO 5000, the R7 did a great job of rendering the image! Of course it helps to decode the raw images with DXO Pure Raw. I got three chances to photograph the bald eagles and I think I did pretty well today 🙂
Last Photograph of 2022
The last time I spotted the bald eagle he was perched on top of a tree high on the west wall of the canyon, well out of range, even with my 400mm lens and 1.4x teleconverter. The eagles fish early and as the day grows warmer they go higher. When the warmer air starts causing updrafts you can be sure they will be soaring a thousand feet in the air! So I decided to pack it in and headed back up highway 24. As I passed the ranch on the north side I noticed the horses looking up. They almost always have their heads down which doesn’t make a good picture. I’ve been wanting to photograph them for a long time and I decided today was the day! As it turns out this is going to be my last capture of 2022.
My season pass for Eleven Mile Came in the mail yesterday, so I’m all ready for 2023! On that note, Happy New Year and I” see ya’ll next year!
More Pictures from today’s photo shoot
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