Click on any photograph to enlarge it.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

First Snow

It's July 30 and we had our first snowfall. The snowfall we had the first of July seemed to be the last of the season and up on red mountain today we could see new snow to the west. Is this the first of winter? Don't laugh, a few years ago we were snowed in here the first week in September, it snowed on both passes out of town. We did get out the next afternoon but the town is totally snowed in part of the winter.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Road From Yankee Boy Basin

This is the overhang on road to Yankee Boy Basin. The road is good at this point but gets worse a few miles up. We have friends in town and are going out all day on all the 4wd trails as everyone wants to get as much as possible into their weeks vacation.

Falls on Road to Yankee Boy

Falls just to left of road in above photo.

Ladder Up Cliff From Mine

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

San Jaun County Historical Society

The San Juan Historical Society operates an excellent Mining museum in Silverton, Colorado. They also own the Mayflower Mill in town and are in process of fixing it up so they can open it for tours. Most of the old mills and mine buildings in the San Juan Mountains are in ruins so it's great that this mill is being saved. I had a chance to photograph inside the mill the other day and will post some of the photos. Would like to spend more time there but work is in progress and parts of the building are unsafe. Special thanks to Jerry for taking me through it.

Interior Mayflower Mill

Interior Mayflower Mill

Ore Crusher, Mayflower Mill

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Eureka, Colorado

It had rained all night which here usually means there will be fog in the morning. The problem is deciding which direction to go to get the best light so this morning I headed for Eureka.

Fog in Eureka Gulch

Friday, July 23, 2010

Mine Shaft, Red Mountain

Mine shafts like this are everywhere in these mountains. Most of them have a small stream of water running out of them, some have these brilliant green algae flows.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Ladder to Nowhere, Frisco Mill

Frisco Mill, Anamis Fork

Notice the numbers on the beams, these mills were standard designs that were built from beams that were cut and numbered then sent to the site to be assembled.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Building With Uncertain Future

This building in Yankee Boy Basin is the one with the wavy floor. This view gives a hint of the problem
Photo notes- Due to the large density range caused by the combination of a bright day at 11,000+ ft and the dark building this image in a combination of two exposures processed like the following interior shot.

Wavy floor, Yankee Boy Basin

This old building in Yankee Boy Basin has settled to the point that the floor, while still intact, is shaped like a wave.
Photo notes- Due to the wide range of light this is a composite of two photos, one with the correct exposure for the outside and one with more exposure for the interior. The two exposures were layered and then the doors and windows selected by using "color range" then masked to reveal the under layer with the shorter exposure. There were actually five bracketed exposures and later I will use all of them to make a better image to make a print from but to get a quick image for the blog only used two.

Monday, July 19, 2010


The spring wildflowers are in full bloom in the high country. Found these in a recent 4wd trip to Yankee Boy Basin.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Coors Falls, Yankee Boy Basin

The water falls in the Yankee Boy Basin were used by Coors for the picture of water falls on their beer can.

Formations, Yankee Boy Basin

Saturday, July 17, 2010


Several coyotes where howling around Gladstone as I started to hike to find a location to photograph this interesting snow pattern on the mountain. Later in the meadow below a pack of noisy coyotes really got yelping, we have a lot of coyotes at home and often see a pack of 5-7 on a morning walk but this pack was the first I've heard here. On the way back to the car walked past this big yellow mine building with a great piece of colorful machinery. Gladstone is at the end of a wide dirt road going past the Silverton ski area, several great 4wd trips start there.

Friday, July 16, 2010

First Light, Cunningham Gulch

I set up early to catch the first light on the meadow with the stream coming out a series of beaver ponds then noticed the light on the rock wall behind me. Both photos made from the same tripod position.

Last Light

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Silverton, Colorado

Like the man said,"You can see a lot just by looking," in this case just by walking the alleys. Later I got a better shot of the Pepsi sign without shadows but liked the way the shadow balanced the angle of the ski.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Lilly Pond, Molas Pass

This Lilly pond is at the 11,000 ft level on Molas Pass.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Rail Yard

Every once in a whole I walk down to the rail yard which has a lot of artifacts from trains and mines yielding interesting, colorful abstracts in the right light.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Cement Creek

Cement Creek flows past our camp and into the Animas River a couple blocks away. Like a lot of the creeks in the area, Cement Creek has so many minerals in it that it stains the rocks a brilliant yellow-orange.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Silverton Stage

No it's not the mail coming into town, the stage picks up tourists from the steam train and takes them on a tour of town.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Boxcar on Kendall Mountain

Took the 4wd trail up Kendall Peak today. The mountain is just behind camp and the 4wd trail goes up to over 13,000 ft. At one point there is a mine off the trail that you used to be able to walk into. The floor was always covered with ice that appeared to be a frozen river. Now the entrance is closed but you can see thick columns of ice rising from the floor maybe formed by water coming down from the ceiling. The view from the top of the peak is spectacular. This old boxcar is about half way up, I remember seeing it over thirty years ago and once getting cover in it as a thunder storm went over. The amazing thing was that someone was able to get it up this narrow and steep 4wd trail.

Hardrock Hundred

At 6 AM today the 19th running of the Hardrock Hundred Endurance run started from downtown. The course is a hundred mile race that goes through the San Juan Mountains with an average elevation of over 11,000 ft at the tree line, a total 33,000 ft elevation gain and at least one peak of 14,000 ft. It rained part of the day today and rain is predicted for tonight but the leaders are expected to finish early tomorrow. Runners have 48 hours to finish.
Those who don't finish in time have another chance next week when the Kendall Mountain half-marathon starts at 8 AM going from downtown at 9,300 ft to the peak at over 13,000 ft and back to town. The course record is 1:34:55. This race follows the jeep trail but the Hardrock Hundred does not use a road or even a jeep trail.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Animas River

Still some snow upstream from camp, in fact in some narrow places in the canyon the snow still forms a bridge over the river. This bridge was still over the river when we arrived but in this sunny open space this is all that's left.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


Having recently spent a few weeks in South Africa where soccer fever was in the air as they planned for the world cup, I tried to follow it the last few weeks. It's hard, however, to get excited about a 1-1 tie.
I think Bucky* sums it up best when told most people in the world follow soccer.
"I can only assume then, that most people in the world are employed as professional paint-drying monitors and watch soccer to wind down after a hard days work"

*from the cartoon, Get Fuzzy

Foggy Morning

Woke up to fog a couple days ago. Didn't know how long it would last so headed out to spots nearby where I had photographed before. Wanted to see how the light was in places I had worked before. The fog lifted a hundred feet or so but we were still socked in and that made the light great.