Category Archives: Route 66

New Mexico & Arizona Highlights 2014

photoventuresEarly December saw me travelling to the USA for the second time in 2014. The primary purpose of the visit was photograph White Sands National Monument and Bosque del Apache. However, as has been the case on past visits we spent the first  three days travelling along Route 66 between Albuquerque (New Mexico) and Holbrook (Arizona). The trip was organised by Roger Reynolds at Photoventures.net who has travelled to these locations on many previous occasions and knows the area very well. The route map as recorded on my trusty Garmin eTrex Vista GPS device is shown below.

The weather conditions varied quite a bit, which made some of the locations a lot more photogenic than was the case when I made a similar trip in late December 2010. This was especially the case when we visited the Petrified Forest National Park near Holbrook. It had been raining heavily just prior to our arrival.

Kachina Point, Painted Desert

Kachina Point, Painted Desert

After the Rain, The Tepees, Petrified Forest National Park

From Holbrook we travelled across to Bosque del Apache. Along the way we stopped to photograph the Very Large Array near Socorro. Again, it had been raining just prior to our arrival.

Truck in the Rain, Plains of San Augustin

Radio Telescope, Very Large Array, Plains of San Augustin

We spent four very productive days at Bosque del Apache. As always there were plenty of Sandhill Cranes and Snow Geese, but two my favourite photographs from this part of the trip are shown below.

Red-tailed Hawk, Bosque del Apache

Sandhill Cranes and Moon, Bosque del Apache

More photographs from the trip can be seen the gallery.

All photos were taken on Canon EOS 5D MkIII or Canon EOS 7D MkII. Post processing was carried out in Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop CC 2014.

U.S. Route 66 – Update

photoventuresI’ve just arrived back in the UK after a pretty hectic 19 day trip along US Route 66. My initial plans were to post a small selection of images each day along with a short description of events and places I had visited. Alas, access to this Blog page was blocked due to issues with WordPress.

Cadillac Ranch, Amarillo, Texas

As explained in my earlier posting, the trip began in Chicago, Illinois and took us through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona before ending at Santa Monica Pier in Los Angeles, California. We endeavoured to follow the old road as best as possible making stops to photograph many of the historic landmarks and people we met along the way. The trip was organised by my good friend Roger Reynolds at Photoventures (photoventures.net)

All images were edited in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 (Public Beta) and Photoshop where additional work was required. I also used Lightroom 5 to catalog all files, which included applying IPTC metadata, keywords and GPS tagging.

Click here to access the HTML photo gallery created in Lightroom 5

U.S. Route 66 – The Mother Road

Yesterday was the first day of my latest trip to the US. This trip in which we’ll be following, as best as possible, US Route 66. It will take me from Chicago, Illinois to Santa Monica beach in California.

US Route 66, also known as the Will Rogers Highway and colloquially known as the Main Street of America or the Mother Road, was one of the original highways within the U.S. Highway System. Route 66 was established on November 11, 1926—with road signs erected the following year. The highway, which became one of the most famous roads in America, originally ran from Chicago, Illinois, through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona before ending at Los Angeles, California, covering a total of 2,448 miles (3,940 km). It was recognized in popular culture by both a hit song and the Route 66 television show in the 1960s. Sadly, the route was removed from the US Highway System on 27 June 1985.

Day one began with our arrival in Chicago. So, not wishing to miss the opportunity we immediately made our way to downtown Chicago. There we photographed in and around the Millennium Park. This area was originally opened in 2004 and contains some very interesting pieces of public art. It’s also the place to photograph some of the tallest skyscrapers in the USA.

Cloud Gate (the Bean), Millennium Park, Chicago

This location also provide the perfect opportunity to experiment with the Canon 8-15mm fisheye zoom lens.

Cloud Gate @ 15mm, Millennium Park, Chicago

Another interesting feature of the park is the Crown Fountain. The fountain is composed of a black granite reflecting pool placed between a pair of transparent glass brick towers. The towers are 50 feet (15 m) tall,  and use light-emitting diodes behind the bricks to display digital videos on their inward faces.

Crown Fountain, Millennium Park, Chicago

For day 2 we had intended to revisit the Millennium Park area, but the weather wasn’t on our side. So, we spent a few hours photographing in around around the nearby Museum Campus. From hear it is possible to capture the city skyline with its many skyscrapers, the tallest of which is the Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower).

Chicago Skyline from Museum Campus

Images edited in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 (Public Beta)

** Disclaimer** Above images are quick previews specifically for this blog so that friends and family can see how I’m getting on.

Day 3 – Arizona and New Mexico Photo Shoot

We awakened on day 3 (Thanksgiving) to discover that it had snowed overnight. Needless to say, this added even more interest to the old cars that are strategically parked around the Wigwam Motel.

Wigwam Motel, Holbrook, Arizona

This would be our last day travelling along Route 66. So, we spent an hour or so photographing the cars before setting off on our journey to Socorro, New Mexico.

Old Car, Wigwam Motel, Holbrook, Arizona

The journey between Holbrook and Socorro at just under 190 miles was fairly long and for the most part uninteresting. That being said, one of the few locations worth photographing was the radio telescopes making up the Very Large Array at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory near Magdalena, New Mexico.

Very Large Array, Plains of San Augustin, New Mexico