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Hanging Lake, Glenwood Springs, Colorado

Hanging Lake is a clear turquoise lake with a waterfall that spills into it that is only about a mile walk from the car park – unfortunately that mile is all uphill and sometimes pretty steep. Not so good if you have heavy camera equipment with you! However, the lake is an impressive sight after the uphill climb and worth the effort. See the attached link for further information: http://www.visitglenwood.com/hanging-lake


To photograph the waterfall I wanted to use a slower shutter speed to blur/smooth out the water. I didn’t have tripod with me as I had decided to leave it in the UK. My Canon 24-105mm L lens was on the body (which is my go-to lens) it has its own internal stabilizer system which means I can hand hold it at lower shutter speeds.  The slowest I got was 1/5th which is fine on the wider end of the lens but a little wobbly nearer the telephoto end. I did shoot some images with a faster shutter but I generally prefer the blurred water.


There’s a good review of the 24-105mm here: http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Canon-EF-24-105mm-f-4-L-IS-USM-Lens-Review.aspx

Just off the main path to Hanging Lake there was also ‘Spouting Rock’ where icy water from snow-melt forces its way through a narrow hole in the rock, producing a waterfall of cold water which you can stand behind and take more photographs. Once behind the falls you really are shooting from a cave to open daylight so exposure was becoming a bit of a juggling act.


My Partners G5’s LCD screen had failed so she was struggling to photograph behind the falls, we had to go old skool with me passing meter readings to her. As the G5 is a compact camera, the aperture doesn’t directly match a DSLR’s so we ended up with some blown images.


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Portrait of Alfred Hendricks a foreman at Bushblok Namibia.During a trip to Namibia I was lucky enough to visit the Bushblok factory and meet some of the guys and girls who work there. I was shown around by Alfred Hendricks (pictured right). Alfred has been part of the team for a number of years and has worked his way up from harvesting Acacia to factory foreman.

Bushblok is project set up by the CCF (Cheetah Conservation Fund) in Namibia, the primary goal being to reduce thorny bushes in Cheetah habitat. We should all be aware that the Cheetah is an endangered species but the Bushblok project highlights a lesser known issue that Cheetah face. Cheetah are reliant on their excellent eyesight and speed but larger bush density means they can have less space to get up to speed when hunting. More importantly a scratch to the eye from an Acacia thorn can blind the animal instantly.

As a side note I picked up a flat tyre on my hire car from a piece of Acacia branch the plant is like steel, solid with little give and thorns that are 4-5 inches in length.

Thorns on an Acacia bush.

Acacia although native is an invasive species and in Namibia as with many other parts of Africa the wildlife that would naturally keep these plants in check are increasingly being forced into reserves. So the Bushblok was started to tackle the issue, essentially a team is constantly working in the field chopping down and chipping bush. These chippings are then either sold as is, or sent to the factory where it is compressed into fuel logs.

So all in all a great idea and project. I had been out in the field with the team that was cutting bush but all the images I took where backed up to a hard drive that failed. I lost a lot of work to that tech issue, I think humidity was the cause.

If you want to know more about Bushblok and the CCF here are there links.


Cheetah Conservation Fund