Category Archives: Trips

Tumbler Ridge Trip – June 23rd – 25th, 2017

The photo club went to Tumbler Ridge a couple of weeks ago. I’ve spent some time putting more effort into editing my images and making a proper workflow for myself. I’m happier with my images and the results. I’ll post a few images below but I’m still processing, so there will be more posted in my flickr share in the days to come.

First though, I want to tell you a story of listening to “experts”. I have struggled with getting my images “sharp” for along time. Sometimes I nailed it, sometimes – not. I’ve asked over the years and I’ve been told many things. I’ve tried the katzeye but that didn’t seem to help me get consistent results. I tried the zoom in till you’ve zoomed all the way while chimping. But nearly everytime I got an image onto my computer when I zoomed in to 100% there was a problem with the focus. My images were, well – soft at best to much of the time. I’ve started obsessing with what was going on and finaly a month ago I had a breakthrough.

You see, I’ve been listening to “experts”. I had heard and was told over and over that lenses were created to operate best (sharpest) at F9 to F11 and I simply accepted that. My breakthrough came when I took a picture on a really bright sunny day (so a really fast shutter speed) and while sitting (so little body movement) of a sign (so absolutely stationary). It was soft – again. It finally occurred to me to try different apertures and I did.

The lens I was using was the lens I use most often, a Tamron 70-300 and boy was I suprised to find out that F8 was not sharp. The sweet spot for my lens turned out to be F19 – F22. I finally feel like I can take pictures again! Well, in Tumbler Ridge I did just that.

The club arrived at the hotel Friday night and we did our usual pot luck dinner.

Saturday morning we headed over to the Dinasour Discovery Gallery. From there we went to see the dinasour tracks along the Flatbed Creek. Afterwards we went for lunch near the city hall and then off to Bullmoose Marshes. We went to Western Steak House for dinner (I won’t do that again, see my review in the link) and then to Quality Creek Falls.

Sunday morning we headed out to the Shipyard-Tatanic Hiking Trails. Let me just say “OMG!” What a gem we have there.

I stayed at my son’s place Sunday night and headed home Monday and I’m glad I did. Stopping along the way I had the pleasure of taking pictures of wildlife I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to.

Better than that though is now that I know what is wrong with my hit/miss sharp pictures – I took hundreds of really nice images. Here are a few for you with more in my flickr share (with more to come there) here https://www.flickr.com/photos/kwgagel.


Barkerville (part 2)

I saved four images of the water wheel in motion and wanted to make them into a gif to show. Unfortunately though Flickr doesn’t seem to animate the gif, so I’m placing it here. I also uploaded a short video of some period actors singing “Oh my darling” which you might be interested in. It’s on Flickr here https://www.flickr.com/photos/kwgagel.

gif animation showing a 1800's era water wheel in motion.

Water Wheel


Barkerville

We went to Barkerville Sunday June 26th, 2016. A slow day of walking about and just looking here and there. There just isn’t enough time in a day to see it all. If you every have the chance to visit Barkerville I recommend it. You can even stay on site! Check it out at http://www.barkerville.ca/.

When I was in grade 5 (1977?) our class went to Barkerville by train (from the lower mainland) and we stayed in a school gym. I really remember only two things about that weekend. Getting sick on the train (Hey – it was a baloney sandwich, who wouldn’t get sick!) and the dentist & patient in Barkerville.

The old dentist is still there. With some new stuff and buildings the trip shouldn’t be forgotten just because you’ve been there before. I took a whole bunch of pictures, here are a few to sample. The rest as usual are in my flickr share at https://www.flickr.com/photos/kwgagel.

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Wells Gray Provincial Park – Sept 25th – 27th, 2015

Prince George Photographic Society’s annual field trip was to Wells Gray Provincial Park this year. At least 23 club members went on this trip (including me!) and it was a busy trip. Great people in a fantastic slice of God’s beautiful creation! There is simply way to much to see in just one full day – but sore feet I got anyway. I arrived Friday evening and right away some us went to Helmkin Falls. I have never seen such a high water fall – just stunning. Saturday morning a few us got up for a sunrise shoot at Dutch Lake, Clearwater, BC. Despite the disappointing overcast we got a number of great shots anyway and we got to go to Moul Falls afterwards. Once I looked down into the depth I just had to go down to the bottom and wow! What a sight that is – and you can go behind the falls and into the giant cavern beside the falls. Later after some lunch we headed out to Spahats Falls – again with the stunning sight! A little night time photography – something I have not done much of – and I got some shots I am very pleased with – some I’m disappointed with as well. As usual you can view my images in my flickr share here http://www.flickr.com/photos/kwgagel.

Sunday morning a few of us headed over to the bridge over Murtle River and spent some time taking pictures there before heading home. I was really disappointed because my camera fogged up. I took a few pictures and thought I’d try out the “Clearview” filter in DxO’s Optic Pro 10 suite when I got home. Well, I learnt two lessons – I should have taken more pictures even with the fogged up camera and DxO’s software really rocks! See for yourself.

Shows a foggy river rapid

Foggy 1

Shows a foggy upstream

Foggy 2

It should be pretty clear from these two images that something was seriously wrong with my camera. But I just hoped that it would clear up on the way home and the camera/lens would be OK. I didn’t hold any hope for these images at all.

Now look what DxO did to recover them for me.

Shows rapids with almost no fogginess - just some mist.

Fixed Foggy 1

Shows the upstream view without the fogginess.

Fixed Foggy 2

I am impressed with DxO’s software…


Chilcoton & Ft. George Canyon with Prince George Photographic Society

In September we went to the Chilcotin for our annual field trip. The weather was astounding and the scenery was beautiful.

I stayed at the Chilcoton lodge along with a few other club members and others stayed at the camp site on the lodge’s property. Next time we go to the Chilcotin I won’t be staying at the Chilcotin Lodge though. The cost was way to high and I didn’t like the way Ria treated our club members or myself. One night I was out and wanted to take a picture of the big dipper over the house behind the lodge. I setup my tripod and took my first picture and while figuring out how to adjust my settings Ria’s dogs started barking at me. Ria’s response? To yell at me to go do that in the camp ground. I would think the correct response is to tell the dogs to quit it – they’re not paying $127 a night. So, I’m not impressed and won’t return.

Still, the lodge was kinda cool even though I couldn’t lock my room door (the latch and striker have shifted over time) and I got a few good images with my fish eye lens.

We (the club) went out to a old home stead and spent a few hours there before heading off to the sand dune. What a spectacular site those two places are. Here are a couple of images from that trip with the rest at my flickr share here Kevin’s Flickr Chilcotin Trip.

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More recently the club went to the Ft. George Canyon near Prince George. While only four of us turned out the trip was worth it – if not exhausting! The Fraser River was low and we had good access to the rocks. The fall colors were wonderful and the company was great. Here are a few images from that trip with the rest on my Flickr share at https://www.flickr.com/photos/kwgagel/.

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