Saturday, August 20, 2011

Return to St. Helens

Crater and Shadow, Mt. St. Helens
For some reason, I have been obsessed about Mt. St. Helens. In my last two posts, I talked about how the weather has frustrated several attempts to get the shots I wanted of this iconic mountain. Well, I had almost given up...when I saw a helicopter for hire. Yes, it was expensive, but really the only feasible way to get the shots I wanted, so I arranged a flight at sunset last night.
It was hazier than I would have liked, the light less crisp and saturated than normal, but the clouds that had toyed with the peak all day finally dissipated at sunset - so I had a clear view of the crater. Yes, the low light meant I couldn't capture the steaming lava dome on the crater floor, but it gave me the long shadow which I love - so it's a trade-off.  (Speaking of the shadow, notice how it makes it look as though the mountain still has a top!)
Having seen the mountain erupt in 1980, and flown over it just afterwards, this was a kind of home-coming. Spectacular.

Nikon D3, 17-35mm lens

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