The 31 days of December

A couple of people have encouraged me to publicly display some of my photos; maybe even sell some of them. I don't want to hassle with collecting sales tax, or mess with all the forms and legal stuff, so I don't plan to sell any of them (unless the price is right and we can do it without government supervision.)

A neighborhood restaurant displays local art work in their dinning room; it's usually a different local artist each month. They will let me display some of my photos in February.

I've selected the photos I plan to display and have had test prints made of a few of them. To keep the cost down I'm going to do the mounting myself. I plan to display them on matt board without frames.

On a whim I had calendars made from the photos. I'm sending one to each of my brothers, sister, Aunt, and have given one to several of my friends. I almost forgot to keep one for myself. The company I used is a little expensive, and there aren't any price breaks for larger quantities. I've found a different company for next time; they have good price breaks, the more you order the cheaper they get, and they offer more print & binding options.

The Great Watermark Project

I've been doing a lot of work in my photo library to make things more manageable. I'm making sure every photo has appropriate keyword tags, a descriptive title, and an informative caption field. I'm also renaming the picture files using a naming convention that will help to identify them if the library software is unavailable. Part of this project includes watermarking many of the photos I've uploaded. This has been really tedious and time consuming.

My watermarks aren't quite this obtrusive.

PS. I discovered that my Picasa photo albums are really disorganized. Since most of them are linked to Blog posts it will be a real chore to straighten them out.

Jupiter over moon

I was awestruck tonight to see the full moon with the planet jupiter just above it. Seeing the two, one above the other, like that is rare enough, but they were also encircled by a moonbow. I felt privileged to see such a sight. It took awhile but I finally got a half-way decent picture of them.

Urban photography and pretty colors

My camera doesn't have a time-lapse function built into it, so I bought a gadget called an Interval Timer that lets me do time-lapse. I had to read the directions several times before I was able to capture this sequence on Halloween night. I programed the timer to take a picture every 10 seconds for 3 minutes. I used the Blend function in Photoshop to combine the pictures into a single photo. It's a real mess but I still think it's pretty cool. Now I know how to use the timer and am ready to make a time-lapse movie of the sunrise and sunset.

I ordered take-out from Brothers BBQ a few nights ago. The sun had just set and the lights were starting to come on when I went to pick-up my order. I looked over and noticed the neon sign hanging in the window. I used my cell phone to capture this photo.

A cold front swept across Colorado and coated Denver with a little snow; this was the same cold front that collided with hurricane Sandy a few days later. I was still rubbing the sleep out of my eyes when I noticed this shot.

I couldn't resist. I think the juxtaposition of the Private Parking sign and the outline made by the snow makes for a great photo.

Just about every artsy fartsy photography book has photos of streaking tail lights, and I wanted to make one for myself. I setup my tripod above the tunnel at 6th & Speer and took several shots between sunset and twilight. They all turned out but struck me as static and uninteresting. I took one of the better shots and cropped it way down to produce a more interesting photo.

They've been running a jackhammer while making repairs to the apartments underground parking garage. The sound reverberates through the entire building. I took a walk around City Park to get out and away from the noise. I took several shots of the Pavilion but really wanted a photo that wasn't a simple straight on shot. I think the bench in the foreground and the frame made by the trees makes this a more interesting photo.

Learn by doing

Panorama of Cheeseman Park in Denver. Used a Canon T1i on a tripod, tilted to portraiture, and a graduated ND filter for the sky. 11 images stitched together in Photoshop.

High Dynamic Range (HDR) photo of fall colors in Cheeseman Park Denver. Canon T1i on a tripod with polarizing filter. HDR created in Photoshop from 7 images.

The originals are much, much larger than these; these were downsized for the upload.

Sunset in Washington Park

Sunset in Washington Park, Denver Colorado, October 19, 2012.

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Also see the video: Time-lapse of sunset in Washington Park on Sunday, November 04, 2012.

I will NEVER forget!

Matthew Shepard died 14 years ago today from injuries he suffered during a brutal hate crime in Laramie Wy. five days earlier. I will NEVER forget !


Too lazy to write

I've been too lazy to write a blog post about my last motorcycle trip; I'll get around to it soon. If you would like to see the pictures I took they can be viewed here.

Along the Pacific Coast Highway in California

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Point and shoot

Sunday I went on a free tour of Riverside cemetery. I only took a couple of pictures, but I sure got sunburned. Tuesday I took my point and shoot camera with me on my morning walk. I let the camera do all the work while I concentrated on colors and shapes.

Riverside Cemetery

Fungus on a wall

Points on a fence

Do you have the drip, drip, drip ?

I do, but it's not what you're thinking. This is the drip I'm talking about:

I was experimenting with my close-up filters this week.

Gulf to Gulf on a Harley

I just returned from a motorcycle trip to the Gulf of Mexico and the Gulf of California. The trip took me through seven states, two countries, and covered 4,408 miles.

Eight of us left Denver Sunday morning and arrived on Mustang Island TX. late Tuesday evening. Mustang Island is one of the barrier islands that guards Corpus Christi Bay. We stayed on the island at a rental cottage in Port Aransas TX. It was insufferably hot and humid.

We went to the beach Wednesday where I swam in the Gulf of Mexico! Late Thursday evening a friend and I rode our motorcycles on the beach; it was a little difficult but different and fun. The highlight of the Port Aransas trip was visiting the USS Lexington aircraft carrier anchored at Corpus Christi Texas. The Lexington was commissioned in 1943 and decommissioned in 1991; it is now a floating museum. I was able to tour the flight deck and the bridge, but didn't have time to tour the rest of the ship.

Saturday a friend and I set out for the Gulf of California. Along the way we visited Big Bend National Park TX., and spent a few days in Phoenix Arizona. Big Bend National Park has a lot to offer visitors, but it didn't make a big impression on me. We rode through South Mountain Park when we were in Phoenix.

Friday we took our passports and headed south to Mexico. We bought Mexican auto insurance before crossing the boarder; US auto insurance isn't any good in Mexico. We spent several days at Las Palomas in Puerto Pe┼łasco, Sonora, Mexico. This was the first time I've been outside the United States, so crossing the boarder was the highlight of the Mexico trip! Swimming with a school of fish in the Sea of Cortez was another landmark event.

After returning to the USA Wednesday, we made a picture and shopping stop in Sedona Arizona. Thursday we rode east to Gallup NM. then north on US481 to Shiprock NM. This is very flat and barren land interrupted only by the occasional large rock formation jutting out of the ground. The largest of these stark rock formations is Ship Rock, the remnant of a 30 million year old volcanic eruption, rising 1,900 feet above the surrounding plane. We stopped for the night in Chama New Mexico.

The last day of the trip may have been the most challenging. I was almost run over by a steam locomotive in Antonito CO., we encountered a lengthy construction delay south of Fountain, a nasty washboard dirt road, heavy rain and hail at Monument, and stop-n-go traffic in Denver. It took three hours to travel from Fountain to my apartment.

The trip included two countries (USA, Mexico); seven states (Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Sonora); lasted 20 days, and covered 4,407.8 miles (7,093.6 kilometers). It was a good trip in spite of the heat and humidity.


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A video slideshow by Clyde Hoadley

All photographs were taken in Colorado.

A video slideshow by Clyde Hoadley 2012 from Clyde Hoadley on Vimeo.

Photos by myself, Clyde Hoadley.
Music is by Kevin MacLeod (

Lions and tigers and bears. Oh my!

Sunday afternoon I rode the motorcycle to the Wild Animal Sanctuary that's north east of Denver International Airport. The sanctuary takes in large carnivores that have been rescued. Some have come from zoo's that were closed down, some were circus animals, and others were rescued from crazy people. The rescued animals are given medical attention and rehabilitated. When they are medically fit and have acclimated they are released into very large open habitats (about 3 acres). They are not kept in pens. Each of the confines has been conditioned to simulate the animals natural habitat. The lions, tigers, bears, and wolves each have their own habitats.

Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer.

Bears will be bears.

It's sooo hot !

We've got pride.

I'm too sexy for my stripes.

It's a wool-if! It's a wool-if!

A young gaggle

These Canada geese are so accustomed to people you can walk right up to them, but they will bite if you try to touch them.

Washington Park, Denver Co

What I did on my spring vacation

I went for a ride on the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad last Saturday. The eight hour tour ran from Alamosa Colorado to La Veta Colorado and back. I couldn't have asked for better weather for a motorcycle ride to Alamosa on Friday. I took I-25 south to Walsenburg Colorado, then US-160 west to Alamosa.

I stopped for a picnic lunch at Lathrop State Park west of Walsenburg. Lathrop was Colorado's first state park. It's named in honor of Howard Lathrop who was the fist Director of the Colorado Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation. The park has two lakes that are surrounded by Pinion and Juniper trees. I ate my lunch at one of the campgrounds overlooking Martin Lake with a clear view of the Spanish Peaks.

Highway US-160 turns west at Walsenberg, crosses over the San De Cristo mountains at La Veta pass, then drops into the San Luis valley. Twenty miles north of the little town of Blanca lies the Great Sand Dunes National Park. After lunching at Lathrop park, I continued west to the Great Sand Dunes. I stopped at the visitors center and bought a commemorative sticker and some books. I Knew I wasn't physically fit enough to hike the dunes, but I was satisfied with taking pictures.

It was a short ride from the dunes into Alamosa where I had booked a motel room for two nights. The town of Alamosa was built by the railroad in 1878; It was built in a single day by freighting in buildings from another railroad town and setting them up on what is now 6th street.

Saturday morning I boarded the Rio Grande Scenic Railroad at the Alamosa train station. The train was comprised of a diesel locomotive and four passenger cars: a club car, a dome car, a regular coach car, and an open-air car. My ticket was for the dome car. Once the train was underway we were free to move from car to car. The train maintained a slow speed so we were able to take in the scenery and snap pictures. The train traveled east over "old La Veta Pass" to the town of La Veta where it stopped. After an hour lunch stop in La Veta we boarded the train for the trip back to Alamosa. They stopped the train at the top of La Veta pass so we could take pictures of the train as it came up the pass. They let us off, then took the train down the tracks about a mile, then brought it back while we snapped pictures as it came up the pass.

View the rest of my pictures

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I rode back to Denver on Sunday. I had a wonderful weekend. It was a great ride on the motorcycle, and a great ride on the train! I went to places I had never been before and met people I hadn't met before. I put 521 more miles on the motorcycle.

Video of the train on La Veta pass


Before and after

Come fly with me

Going to Barr Lake, Cherry Creek reservoir, and Chatfield have been on my to do list for a long time. I visited Barr Lake last week and finally visited Chatfield this week; I haven't been to Cherry Creek yet. All three are part of the State Parks system and practically in the city. I don't have a reason for not visiting these parks before, just a list of lame excuses—too busy, too late in the day, too cold, too windy, or too tired.

Chatfield opened as a state park in 1976. The park gets its name from Isaac W. Chatfield, a veteran of the civil war, who first owned the land. Chatfield dam was constructed in 1967 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers following the destructive flood of 1965. Chatfield State Park is well known as a spot for birding; the Audubon Society of Greater Denver has facilities in the park. Chatfield State Park is surrounded by the Botanic Gardens at Chatfield and Hildebrand Ranch Park on the west, Roxborough State Park on the south, and South Platte Park on the north.

A friend and I rode our motorcycles to Chatfield Saturday afternoon. We didn't take the direct route preferring to motor around the western suburbs first. We stopped for lunch at the Hunan Dynasty Restaurant—9882 West Belleview Avenue in Littleton. The service was good, the food was excellent, the portions generous, and a very reasonable price!

At the park we circled the still frozen lake stopping a couple of times so I could snap some pictures. There were a lot of bicyclers and hikers in the park. We watched people fly model airplanes at the Chatfield Aerodrome, then circled the southern end of the lake along Rampart Range road and Waterton road. South Wadsworth ends at Waterton road on the south end of the lake. We took Santa Fe Drive (US-85) back into Denver.

I nearly dumped the bike a couple of times when I slipped on loose gravel. After 13,700 miles it's time for new tires. That's a lot of miles on one set of motorcycle tires—3 to 6 thousand miles is typical. With new tires I'll be ready for new adventures this summer.

The old buffalo wallow

Sunday and Monday was great motorcycling weather—blue skys, 70F temperatures, and calm winds. I needed to get outside so I grabbed my camera, hopped onto the motorcycle, and rode to Barr Lake north of Denver. There were a lot of people visiting the park Sunday, so I wasn't alone.

I was told an owl was sitting on a nest a short walk north of the visiters center. I took the camera and went looking for the owl. I met several other photographers and bird watchers along the way. I never found the owl, but I took several pictures of trees, tree stumps, and ducks. Only a couple of those shots turned out to be keepers.

What is now Barr lake use to be nothing but a buffalo (bison) wallow prior to 1880. In the late 1800's a dam was built across the north end of the wallow, and canals were built to fill the reservoir with water from the South Platte river. Unfortunately, by 1960 Barr lake had become the biggest sewage lagoon in the United States. Clean-up efforts began on the South Platte and Barr lake after the 1965 flood. Barr Lake opened as a state park in 1977, and in 2004 the lake was declared a source of drinking water.

I went back to the lake late Monday afternoon. I took my big telephoto lens and a tripod with me. I headed south from the visitors center shortly after 4 O'clock. There is an eagles nest at the south end of the lake. After walking 1 1/2 miles I finally spotted an eagle in a tree; it didn't appear to be siting on a nest. I took several photos of the bird even though it was too far away. I continued south to the end of the trail before turning around. I never found the nest. I learned later the best view of the nest is from a pier that is close to where I saw the eagle. I took several photos of the setting sun on my way back. It was twilight when I got back to the motorcycle, and I rode home in the dark.

My feet really hurt by the time I got home. I discovered large blisteres on the bottom of both feet ! I've hiked in those boots before without problems; it may have been the socks I wore that caused the problem. Next time I'm taking a pair of walking shoes with me.
Click pictures for larger view.