Starlight Discovery At Piney Lake
Over the past few years of exploring Piney Lake, I came to the conclusion that I really wanted to pursue what I considered a truly engaging capture from the area. In thinking about what this meant, I made the decision to pursue timing with the Aspen Fall Foliage and the light of a Quarter Moon.
So this past fall, I planned a night at Piney Lake under a Quarter Moon setting in the western skies when the Aspen Fall Foliage would hopefully be at it's peak. During the drive up in the dark, I couldn't really see much in the way of Aspen leaves but I had high hopes that they were ready for me. Sure enough, when I got to the scene, I could see plenty of bright yellow aspen leaves. And with clear skies and calm winds, I had the uncontrollable factors "right where I wanted them". :-)
In working with the last of the moonlight for the evening, I found myself drawn to the canoes lined up next to the dock. I had shown a little hesitation in going out onto the dock (considering some of the area on the west side is part of the Piney River Ranch) but with the last of the moonlight, I decided to be quiet and go for it.
Sure enough, this scene from the end of the dock near the canoes confirmed my hopes as soon as I saw it in my viewfinder. I felt like I was onto something good� So with some persistence in getting just the right composition, I settled on this view with the canoes leading the eye right from the foreground. And with the bright stars rotating up over the Gore Range, this scene was most definitely something very special. As an added bonus, right before the moonlight started to fade from the foreground, the star cluster Pleiades (aka Seven Sisters) rose up over the top of the mountain ridge above.
As I love to take in the beauty of a starry night in the mountains, I felt that the canoes somehow had a way of slowing everything down. They encouraged me to stop and take in all the beautiful components of the gorgeous evening. My only wish was that I could have gone for a float out on the lake. But that's where the image ends and the dream begins�
This image shows fall foliage, reflections from Piney Lake and the rugged Gore Range under starry skies near Vail, Colorado. I captured this image with a single long-exposure from my D800 and a Rokinon 14mm f/2.8 lens - ISO 6400, f/?, for 120 seconds. On the processing side for this image, I used a combination of Nik's Viveza 2 and StarSpikes Pro 2.
February 2nd, 2013
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