Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Another good day of learning

I had a pretty productive day yesterday and learnt a few new things to boot, which is never a bad thing.

The day started off with my decision to do some photo reconnaissance at Turkey Mountain in Tulsa.  I've been wanting to locate some higher elevation viewpoints of the Tulsa metro area as there are some promising potential photos to be taken.  

Once at Turkey Mountain I decided to leave my tripod in the car and took the monopod instead (so glad I did this) to save weight.  Also, the supplied carry strap on the tripod doesn't work too well as it is top heavy so keeps flipping itself upside-down.  And, as I later discovered, a monopod makes a pretty useful hiking pole to aid traversing broken terrain.

However, I did find at the end of the day, my Lowepro Stealth Reporter bag is not very suitable for hiking over several miles of trails.  My shoulders are not very happy today...then again, have a few aches and pains in other places too!  Suffice to say I will be investigating a back pack for future trips here....and I fully plan on returning.

Okay, back to the trails and views.  I picked the "yellow" trail as it followed along the line of the Arkansas River and had the higher potential of good views over Tulsa.  Unfortunately as it turned out, the views were a little disappointing in a photographic sense.  There were few spots where there was uninterrupted views of the (interesting) Tulsa skyline(s).  Even the Autumnal trees with the lesser foliage did a good job of blocking things.  Don't get me wrong, the trail was very enjoyable, just not what I was looking for.

My best opportunity came at approximately the mid-way point on the trail, when I got to the "spider" part, where the "pink" trail passed close by and there was a view of the Tulsa downtown area:

Admittedly, in this recon photo, the sky is pretty boring and I will need to zoom/crop quite a bit to concentrate on the downtown skyline but it certainly has potential.  Should look much better with a great sunrise/sunset lighting the buildings and skyline...just need to be here at the right time to catch either.  Although, I'm leaning more towards a sunrise as I'm not so sure I fancy navigating the trail back down to the parking lot in the light of dusk (or later) - definitely need a good headlamp to light your way so as to not lose the trail and/or injure yourself.

Here is a zoomed/cropped recon photo to give a better idea of how things would look:

Again, a pretty flat and boring sky - not helped with this being taken in the early afternoon but then again, this is just a recon to find viewpoints to revisit at a later date when the light is better.

My only real "keeper" photograph of my visit is this one of the trail itself.  I spotted this tree that had grown around a huge boulder just to the side of the trail and the autumnal leaves just added to the scene:

All in all I had a great time at Turkey Mountain and fully intend to visit again.  I want to learn the trails better (recon them for photo viewpoints/vistas) as well as be there under more favorable lighting conditions to capture better photos of Tulsa.

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