Last weekend, I took a road trip. Driving up route 395, along the California/Nevada border, most of the way was in a valley, between mountain ranges (primarily the east side of the Sierra Nevada range). We spent the night in Bishop, California. If you follow me on FaceBook, you may have seen some of these images. I shot them with an Olympus OMD-EM5, then transferred a few of them to my iPhone, did some quick post-processing in the amazingly easy Snapseed app, then upload them to FB. Details on transferring the files, here.
When I got home, I catalogued all the files, in Lightroom CC, culled out the ones I didn’t want to use, for this post, and did a little post-processing, mostly to bring out the details in the shadows, or tone down the highlights — since most were shot under bright sun. Certainly, I could have bracketed exposures, then combined the images for a broad dynamic range, that just isn’t the method I usually prefer. You are welcome to do it differently. 🙂
US Route 395 is full of ‘Kodak Moments”, but one of the more interesting sights are the Fossil Falls. There is no water. Not even a drinking fountain! Down a washboard, but well graded, road, marked by the volcanic dome, know as Red Hill, there is a parking lot and a path through a field — actually, a lava flow — for a far as the eye can see. Though full of ancient lava, there is a short path, to the the ‘falls’.. On the day that I visited, the temperature as 100 degree, Fahrenheit. Were good shoes — sandles would be foolish, and even tennis shoes won’t protect your feet.
As I walked toward the falls, I continually looked backwards, over the course that I had come, looking for landmarks to help me navigate my way back to the car. I doubt anyone would get seriously lost, but you might take the wrong path and increase the distance you need to walk, unnecessarily — remember, it was 100 degrees!
I believe that there is a way to climb down the cliffs to the bottom of the falls, but it was not something I wanted to explore, alone, in 100 degree temperatures. However, after driving for several hours, it was a good way to stretch the legs. There is only a small sign, so look for Red Hill, about 40 miles south of Lone Pine, on US Highway 395.
One issue that we faced, traveling with Casper, in such hot temperatures, was shade. I didn’t want him to walk on rocks, or asphalt, that had been baking in the midday sun. Obviously, I couldn’t leave him in the car, with windows up, so that made some of the exploring a solitary adventure, even though there were two of us — someone had to stay in the car, keeping the air conditioning running. I usually got he job of exploring, while Carmen got the job of staying in the A/C!!!
One of the state provided rest areas, along the highway, was in the Owens Valley. It had picnic tables and shade. Even so, you can see that the next picture was taken from inside the car. 🙂
From this rest area, we were able to look back, toward the highway. One of the important things to do, when traveling, is to look backwards (preferably after stopping the car), and see what you would have missed if you were just looking forward.
We stopped for the night, in Bishop, CA. [Editorial comment:] I used Trivago to find a vacancy and the best rate on motels, in Bishop. I found one for $80, but there was no mention of pets, so I looked up the motel’s phone number and called them. Yes, they accepted pets. Great. Did the have a vacancy, and what was the rate? Hmmm…. $65 for the same room that Trivago purported to offer at a discount of $80!!! So much for trusting Trivago!!
All images, on this page, captured with the EM5 and M. Zuiko 12-40mm/f2.8 Pro lens.
Next time — up the mountain and into Yosemite Nartional Park.