This is my impression of the Grand Canyon.
This is how it looks like in my dreams!
One day, I would also like to see the canyon filled with fogs too!
The Frommers travel guide considers the Golden Gate Bridge “possibly the most beautiful, certainly the most photographed, bridge in the world”. It opened in 1937 and had, until 1964, the longest suspension bridge main span in the world, at 4,200 feet (1,300 m).
This groups of bridges took 10 years to build and was completed in 1988.
There is no doubt in my mind that the elder sister looks more aesthetically attractive, despite the age!
This must be the most scenic coastal route in the States.
It has got everything a photographer would wish – fog, blue sky, deep blue sea, waves coming in and breaking before they reach the shore, empty beaches, flowers, rocky coast with rocks jutting out to the water and even elephant seals.
The several photos here will attest to the beauty.
The sea is just restless. Near the shore, this is where you can find many food chains – from planktons to fishes and birds etc. where a creature can find food but can also be become food for others!
There are so many good photos that I can choose from my wife’s photos for the US trip; sometimes, I just don’t know which ones to pick.
There are some photos which document her experience in the Monterey Bay Aquarium (MBA) that I find interesting.
The following is the Wiki’s introduction to MBA:
The Monterey Bay Aquarium (MBA) was founded in 1984 and is located on the site of a former sardine cannery on Cannery Row of the Pacific Ocean shoreline in Monterey, California, United States. It has an annual attendance of 1.8 million visitors. It holds thousands of plants and animals, representing more than 600 species on display. The aquarium benefits from a high circulation of fresh ocean water which is obtained through pipes which pump it in continuously from Monterey Bay.
The photos can even be a starter of a sub-series on their own.
Here is a photo which I like – there are so many tentacles!
I wasn’t sure whether this is a photo for this week’s WPC Challenge – Contrast or forming part of this series documenting my wife’s 1.5 months travel in the Southwest of the States.
It shows my brother-in law and sister-in-law on top of a sand dune.
There is a lot of contrast there:-
the contrast in color between the leeward and windward side of the dune
the contrast between the mountain and the desert
the contrast between the sky and the landforms
the contrast between the vastness of the area and just two people on top of the dune.
I am glad that my wife’s picture sometimes include people into landscape picture. I have always tried to avoid it; but this inspires me that sometime including people into the picture adds a lot of interest into the image!
From Mono Lake, my wife headed towards the Padre Crowley Point and beyond that what she saw was a palette of color.
The following (in italics) is extracted from a signboard erected at the location:
More than five million years ago, repeated volcanic eruptions blanketed the landscape, depositing ash and minerals. The volcanic minerals were chemically altered by heat and water with variable amount of oxygen and other introduced elements.
Chemical analyses have identified a paint pot of elements, iron, aluminum, magnesium and titanium, but no copper. Some of the colorful minerals here include red hematite, green chlorite.
Sunset and sunrise are perhaps the most beautiful moment – especially if you are in the desert.
From the picture, you can feel that the sun was still hot as it was exerting its last rays of light.
The sand on the ground has formed ripples as wind blew across the desert.
There was not much of signs of life, except in the distance, one man was walking away hurriedly.
There was complete silence in the area as the day was coming to a close.
Mono Lake is something quite unique.
The scenery was so special that has provoked my wife into taking photos – something she won’t do in our travels – I was the one who photographed while she just enjoyed the view, as she know when back home, I’ll have all the photos.
The following is extracted from Wikipedia:
Mono Lake is a large, shallow saline soda lake in Mono County, California, formed at least 760,000 years ago as a terminal lake in a endorheic basin. The lack of an outlet causes high levels of salts to accumulate in the lake. These salts also make the lake water alkaline.
This desert lake has an unusually productive ecosystem based on brine shrimp that thrive in its waters, and provides critical nesting habitat for two million annual migratory birds that feed on the shrimp.
The human history of Mono Lake is associated with its productive ecosystem. The native Kutzadika’a people derived nutrition from the larvae of the alkali flies that live in the lake. When the city of Los Angeles diverted water from the lake, it lowered the lake level, which imperiled the migratory birds. The Mono Lake Committee formed in response and won a legal battle that forced Los Angeles to partially restore the lake level.
The draw down in water levels have revealed more of the salt columns.
This must be one of the best photos my wife has taken recently in her trip to the National Parks in the Southwest of the States.
Behind him was the blue sky.
He seemed to be facing a formidable barrier so that he couldn’t hike upwards anymore.
The arch just rose so steeply and at an angle above him.
This image shows a big contrast between the huge and strange shaped landform and the small and fragility of the visitor.
I asked my wife how she got around in the National Parks of the Southwest.
Everyday, if they were not driving from NP to NP, they would be walking / hiking within the parks.
Typically, they would walk 4 or even 5 hours a day.
Sometimes, they walked back to some scenic spots to see how they look during sunset.
Here is a picture which shows huge rock jutting above you, you walk underneath it as if it is a canopy. The path is narrow and winding; on the edge of the path is a slope which descend quite steeply.
There are of course areas which are to steep. In some cases, ladders are provided for visitors to climb up. There are also areas where the paths are too narrow and dangerous, in such cases, chains on the slope side may be provided.
Of course, in some NPs, mules are available.
Here are a couple of photos, showing the mules.
Of course, some visitors do not seem to require anything to assist in their hiking.
My last photo show a lone visitor wandering among the strangely shaped rocks.