Rocky Mountain National Park Experiments / by Matthew Bryant

Arriving at RMNP on 6 July I drove up Trail Ridge Road to the Forest Canyon Overlook and tried out my new X-T3 in some challenging shooting conditions. The shot with the sun is a composite of multiple frames. It’s not a super great image, but I wanted to try out the exposure bracketing function on the new camera and so it was a good learning opportunity. After admonishing some fellow humans to stay on the paved walkway and not destroy the delicate tundra flora, I waited out a short rain storm to come back and try out some of the multiple focus points on the camera as well. I ended up focus-stacking the image with Long’s Peak in the background and learned that I need to take even more images at various focus points in order to get all of the foreground in focus as well as the background. I think this one was only five focus points and I think I would probably need about ten to make this image again.

The third image is of Bierstadt Lake. I made the early morning hike to the Lake (about 1.5 to 1.8 miles one way) and arrived not too long after sunrise on 7 July. Another friendly photographer said that the lake was bathed in a glow that had since passed and was covered with a bit of fog earlier—almost all of which had evaporated by the time I arrived. Nonetheless, it was a great morning adventure that paid off with a beautiful mountain lake!

The fourth image is a Milky Way shot that I took from the Bear Lake parking lot on 23 July. I used my 12mm Rokinon (manual focus) lens which performed admirably. The best part was that Alison got to experience her first Milky Way viewing (at least as an adult) with me! Jupiter is the bright planet just to the right of the galactic center.

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