Star trails, pine trees, and mountain tops in Breckenridge, Colorado

I recently had the privilege of visiting Summit County in Colorado. During my visit I spent one of the nights outside in the refreshingly chilly mountain air. Even in April there was still several feet of snow on the ground (not a huge surprise when you are over 10,000 ft. above sea level), though the daytime sun was warm enough to be outside in a t-shirt. Being out of the city the stars shone brightly behind the silhouettes of pine trees and mountains. These images reinforce the magic of the camera as the camera captured the stars moving across the night sky.

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Rocky Mountain Silhouette
Pine trees on Mt. Argentine in Blue River, Colorado as the stars streak across the twilight sky deep in the Rocky Mountains.
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Night Life in the Rockies
A backyard view during the twilight hours with Mt. Argentine in the background as time passes during the night.
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Twilight Mountain Road
Cars fly past on Colorado Hwy. 9 in High County during the twilight hours.
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I Threw Stones at the Stars, but the Whole Sky Fell
The night view from my sister’s patio in Blue River, Colorado (near Breckenridge in High County) as the stars move across the night sky behind Mt. Argentine covered with pines and snow.

Off the beaten path of a delivery driver

“Every sunset brings the promise of a new dawn”

–Ralph Waldo Emerson

This photograph was taken last January in Shakopee, MN on a chilly winter evening. I pulled over while on a delivery route to watch the sun set over this frozen marsh between Chaska and Shakopee.
This photograph was taken last January in Shakopee, MN on a chilly winter evening. I pulled over while on a delivery route to watch the sun set over this frozen marsh between Chaska and Shakopee.

One of the beauties of being a delivery driver that covers a wide portion of Minnesota was the scenery. Getting routes that went through the middle of nowhere or off the beaten path was always a highlight. Though this route went through the populated areas of Chaska and Shakopee it also went through some uninhabited rural roads. Finding these quiet, peaceful places is something I miss from that job. Though many nights were stressful or frustrating a drive like this made all of that seem to fade as I could watch the sun slowly setting behind the trees while I took my break with my camera. It was always quite a perk to be able to poll over anywhere whenever you wanted and take a 15 or 30 minute break and often led to some beautiful images of places that everybody just speeds on past.

That was Wisconsin, night photography in the beauty of winter

That was Wisconsin,

that was yesterday,

now I have nothing that I can keep,

cause every place I go I take another place with me

-Justin Vernon

Relaxing on shore in a bed of snow and winter clothes as I watch the colorful winter night in the Wisconsin sky
Relaxing on shore in a bed of snow and winter clothes as I watch the colorful winter night in the Wisconsin sky

The night sky is a view that will just never get old. This was taken at the cabin on a chilly December night. Somehow the cold seems to disappear as you sit on the shoreline and watch the beauty of the sky, even on a cloudy, starless night. The puffy clouds act like a diffuser for the moonlight evenly lighting the world below as the snow brightens the scene. Night photography is a beautiful way to capture not only a space but also a time. Using longer exposures helps to keep a photographic record of a period of time. That period can be anywhere from a few moments to hours. This specific image shows 30 seconds of history. You can see the yellow grasses blowing gently in the wind against the moonlit whites of the snow upon the lake. The fall colors are still showing in a fire of red, orange, and yellow on the ground through the snow providing contrast to the gentle violets and blues of the clouds while the orange gently peek out through a break in the clouds all divided by the bare trees. Night photography requires the patience to sit back and let the camera do its magic and do nothing but wait. The results are always worth that wait!