www.MuraleePhotos.com: Blog https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog en-us (C) Muraleedharan Raghavan (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Sun, 14 Jan 2024 01:18:00 GMT Sun, 14 Jan 2024 01:18:00 GMT https://www.muraleephotos.com/img/s/v-12/u513489262-o631082170-50.jpg www.MuraleePhotos.com: Blog https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog 120 80 My favorite Christmas lights in and around Seattle https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2023/12/my-favorite-christmas-lights-in-and-around-seattle
  • Menashe House, West Seattle
  • Menashe house in West Seattle, couple of miles from Alki Beach. One of the best light displays in the Pacific Northwest . It is the Menashe Jewelers doing this, several years now. Waterfront home, you can drive up there, park car on the side and get out and see and photograph. They are happy to receive visitors.

    The Christmas lights display at Menashe House.

    5605 Beach Dr SW, Seattle WA


    1. Evergreen church in Bothell,WA

    Free Show Nightly  - Dec. 1st - 24th 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

    Free parking, free cookies. Coffee available to buy.


    Christmas Lights at Evergreen Church, Bothell.


    3429 240th Street Southeast, Bothell, WA, 98021


         3. Keener's Light in Bothell, WA

    Keener’s Christmas is a drive through private light display with over 100k lights with decorations from blow molds, blow ups and so much more!  Hours are from 6-10 pm everyday weather permitting starting December 1st and ending December 31st.

    Keener's Lights in Bothell,WA

    16504 112th Pl NE, Bothell, WA 98011


    1. Kornfed's Christmas Lights in Bothell, WA



    Konfed Lights, Bothell

    10629 Sunrise Dr, Bothell, WA 98011


    1. The Lights of Christmas at Stanwood, WA


    A drive-thru Christmas wonderland!

    November 24-26, 30, December 1-3, 7-10, 14-17, 20-23, 26-30, 2023

    Advanced reservations required.

    The Lights of Christmass at Stanwood, a drive-thru Christmas wonderland!.

    20800 MARINE DRIVE, STANWOOD, WA 98292


    6. Garden d’Lights 2023


    Saturday, November 25 – Sunday, December 31, 2023 (closed Christmas Day)
    Tickets must be purchased online.
    Premium parking in the Garden’s lot is available for a fee.

    Garden d’Lights 2023, Bellevue Botanical Garden

    Bellevue Botanical Garden
    12001 Main Street, Bellevue, WA


    7. Six million holiday lights at Marysville,WA 

             6 million holiday lights at Marysville, WA. This display is open form Nov 22, 2023  – Jan 15, 2024. 

             Free to drive around and see the lights.

            “Tulalip Lights” is located along Interstate 5 and accessible at westbound exits 200 or 202


            10400 34th Ave NE, Marysville, WA 98271










    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) christmas december Light https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2023/12/my-favorite-christmas-lights-in-and-around-seattle Fri, 01 Dec 2023 21:57:00 GMT
    Quick sky replacement using photoshop https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2021/2/quick-sky-replacement-using-photoshop I am not a fan of altering images in post processing by adding or removing objects in the image. Adobe Photoshop recently added a Sky replacement feature. This feature is quite interesting to learn. I was taking some couple photos outside and it is raining all day this week, so the sky is grey all the time. Sky replacement helps to add some colorful skies into the images quite easily in some simple clicks. I have heard about some expensive plugins that uses the socalled Artificial Intelligence to do sky replacement in single click. Photoshop does this pretty fast compared to third party plugin.  It was fun to learn  sky replacement in Photoshop. You could add your own sky to replace or pick one from the free images provided by Photoshop.


    This is a sample image after post processing using sky replacement. Muraleedharan

    This is the original image. The entire processing took under five minutes to finish. Muraleedharan   


    The steps to replace sky:

    Select the ‘Sky Replacement…’ from the Edit menu in Photoshop.

    You can pick one sky from the available options, or you can upload your own.

    You can make several adjustment after selecting the sky.  Shift edge, adjust temperature and brightness, Change scale, color adjustment, move the sky position etc. are some of them. The dialog that provides all these options is easy to learn, it is all sliders and pop down menu selections.



    What can we do if there is water in the foreground ?  If there is water and if the sky is colorful, then naturally there will be a reflection in the water if the water is calm. Photoshop  do not have the capability to create a reflection, so we have to make our own. I created  my own  reflection.


    Here are the steps for making a reflection of the sky in the water.

    • Rasterize the layers using Ctrl-Alt-Shift-E in Windows and  Command-Alt-Shift-E in Mac
    • Make a duplicate layer
    • Flip the duplicate layer vertically (  Edit -> Transform -> Flip vertical)  
    • Change the opacity of the layer to 50% so that you can also see the layer underneath it.
    • Add a layer mark
    • Hide the mask using Ctrl-I
    • Use a white brush and reveal the contents in the foreground water.
    • Reduce the opacity of the brush from 100-50% gradually when you move from  center of the water to the edge of the water, so the change looks natural.
    • After you finish working with the brush, change the opacity of the duplicate layer to 100%.

    Voila, you are done with the adjustments.


    You can now continue with your usual post processing of a landscape image by changing Saturation, Sharpness, Noise etc. to your taste. 



    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2021/2/quick-sky-replacement-using-photoshop Sun, 14 Feb 2021 02:32:10 GMT
    How to make time lapse video https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2017/9/how-to-make-time-lapse-video Introduction : 
    I always enjoy watching the time lapse of clouds and Sun moving in videos showed on TV during the weather news. My initial thinking was that it is probably a normal video fast forwarded 100 times to show several hours of dynamically changing scenery in just a few seconds.  It became even more  interesting to me once I learned how to do it with still images crated by a camera.  I thought of scribbling what I learned in the past two years while making time lapse of beautiful scenes. I have created time lapse videos showing fast moving clouds, dancing Aurora ( also known as Northern Lights ) and Milkyway.

    Planning :    
    We need to have a scene where there is moving objects in the frame. An intersection with busy traffic is a good example. Moving clouds make good subject too for time lapse. A busy railway station with trains and people, fireworks, Milkyway, starry sky etc. are all good examples for making time lapse. Make sure to have more than 50% of the area dynamically changing in the frame. If only a small portion of the frame is changing, then that may not make a good time lapse. 

    Equipment : 
    You can shoot a sequence of images to make time lapse video using any camera. You can even shoot the images with a phone, you will need an app to do this though - the conventional camera apps that come with the camera may not support this feature.  What you need to do is to shoot a sequence of images at frequent intervals. You need a tripod to setup the camera. If there is any stable surface like a wall or car hood, then that is good enough too. Make sure the camera does not move while the images are photographed. Setup the tripod and camera in such a way that no objects ( like people or car ) move immediately in front of the camera and block shooting in the middle. If you are on a trail or a road, make sure to setup the camera a few feet away from the path so that it is not touched or obstructed by people. You will need a intervalometer to setup the camera to shoot images at frequent interval. Many digital cameras come with built in intervalometer. If  your camera does not support this feature, you will need a cable release or wireless remote that support  the intervalometer. Make sure the battery has enough charge left and also the memory card has enough space to store a few hundred images. 

    Shooting : 
    Setup the camera exposure in manual mode. Aperture priority is another way of setting it up if the light changes dynamically in the scene. Take test shots and make sure you get what you expect in the image, setup the exposure in manual or aperture priority mode. It is good to set the lens in manual focus mode. If there is large moving objects in the frame, the camera may struggle in auto focus mode, and you may lose some frames. The easy thing to do is to take a test shot in auto focus mode, and then change the lens/camera to manual focus mode. Or, you can lock the focus in many cameras. In either case, don’t let the lens do auto focus during the shoot.  If you are shooting in a busy intersection, an interval of  1 to 5 seconds will give a good video at the end. If you are shooting clouds, 5 - 10 seconds interval is good, consider the speed of the wind. If the wind is heavy, chose short interval  like 2-5 seconds. The interval between shots must be larger than your shutter speed. This is relevant if you are shooting in the night. For example, if the shutter speed is  5 seconds, the interval should be 5 seconds or larger. You can lower the ISO and  use a wide aperture to get faster shutter speeds in the night. We will need 30 frames per second to make the video, means every 30 images will make one second long video.  If you are shooting at 2 seconds interval, then you will get 30 images per minute. If you shoot for 30 minutes, then you will get 30 x 30 = 900 images in 30 minutes, which means the time lapse will have 900/30 = 30 seconds of video. If you are planning to setup the camera in your balcony and plan to shot the whole afternoon or evening to show the change in weather, then use larger intervals like 1 minute. 

    Post processing :  
    We will use Lightroom for processing the mages and Photoshop to create the video. Import all the images into Lightroom and do basic editing for the first image. I don't spend much time processing the images.  Add some Vibrance and Saturation, adjust whites & blacks, lower the highlights and brighten up the shadows, and add some contrast, apply some dehaze +/-. This should give a reasonably good effect in the video. After editing the first image to your taste, sync all the images with this change. Select all images and export to JPG format. A resolution of 1920 on the longer side is good enough for 1080p video.  Make sure to select 'Custom Name - Sequence'  in the Lightroom export dialog.

    We will  now use Photoshop to create the video. In Photoshop, go to File menu and select Open. When the open dialog comes up, browse to the folder where the exported JPG files reside, then select the very first image. Check the 'Image Sequence' option at the bottom right corner of the open dialog.   Click 'Open'.

    Photoshop will now show another dialog box asking frame rate. Chose 30 as the frame rate. You can also choose 24 for slower video, it is up to you. I chose the standard 30 frames per second usually.

    Click OK and Photoshop now will open the files and show a video group for editing, this will take only a couple of seconds.  The layers panel will show a video group that you can now edit.

    Go to Window menu in Photoshop and select 'Timeline', this will open the video time line at the bottom of the edit window.

    Select the 'Audio track' option at the bottom of the Timeline to add an audio file so that you can add music to the video.

    Voila, you are done with a basic editing of your time lapse video.  Export and enjoy.  Go to file menu, and select Export and then "Render Video. . . ' to export the video.

    Use your video editing skills to make the video more pretty by adding effects.

    Here is some Time lapse videos. 
    Milkyway and Mount rainier Milkyway and Mount rainier

    Milkyway at Palouse falls state parkMilkyway at Palouse falls state park

    Dancing of Aurora Borealis, aka Northern LightsThis time lapse video was shot at Gold Creek Pond, near Snoqualmie pass.

    Clouds at gold creek pondThis was shot while waiting for Aurora to show up.

    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2017/9/how-to-make-time-lapse-video Mon, 11 Sep 2017 06:22:52 GMT
    How to photograph Fireworks https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/7/HowTo-photograph-fireworks Fireworks at KirklandView from heritage park July 4th is just  two days away and it is time to enjoy some fireworks. I have seen that almost every city in and around Seattle has fireworks show on the night of July 4th. When I started learning Photography, fireworks was one of my favorite subjects. I have photographed fireworks in Kirkland Marina for about 4 times in the past. It is one interesting place on the East side of Seattle. I will talk about directions and where to park etc. at the end of this page. Are you ready to photograph the fireworks ?  When we think about photographing a show like this, I like to do it in two different approaches (1) Use a fast shutter speed to get the bursts sharp and crisp (2) Another approach is to use a long exposure to get the light trails of the fire going up and exploding in the air. Let us look at both of these in detail.  What kind of camera and lens you will need ? You can use almost any camera and lens for this, it is a display of lights and that is what any camera can capture for you. I had good results with a 50mm lens in the past. You can use a telephoto lens of a prime lens, it does not matter. The thing that matters is, how close to the fireworks are  you standing. If you are standing close to it, you will need a wide angle lens, if not a prime. You will need a tripod and a remote shutter release. Just in case if you do not have any of these, use self-timer.
    Use a fast shutter speed if you want to get just the bursts sharp. Use a high ISO like 800 or higher and set your aperture to F5.6 or wider, if possible.  Turn your camera in aperture priority mode and use auto focus to aim at a burst and just shoot. Voila, you will most likely get a shutter speed of 1/100 or faster, and that is good enough to get a sharp image hand holding the camera. It is display of lights, so sharpness does not really matter much. The image below is an example of such an image. I actually added bursts from  4 different images to create this composite image, to make it more interesting and also to have a symmetric balance.
    Fireworks at Kirkland View from heritage park

    Photographs taken with faster shutter speeds is loved by many people. I have seen such images in most newspapers I read. I love to use long shutter speed to get the light trails from the time the tartar leaves the ground until it finish a burst in the sky.  Setup your camera on tripod, and use manual exposure, and set the camera to bulb mode.  Set the ISO to 200 and F-stop to F11. Use a cable release or wireless shutter to release  the shutter. Watch the ground or barge from where the rockets go up. Click the shutter when you see a rocket leaving the ground. Watch it till it get to the sky and finish a burst. This may take a few seconds. Click remote again to close the shutter when a burst is finished. If bursts are happening one after another, keep the shutter open for up to 30 seconds or more, so you will have bunch of bursts in the same image. Look at the preview of an image on LCD and see how bright is the foreground. Increase or decrease the ISO accordingly to adjust the brightness of the foreground elements in the image.  Make sure to turn OFF the 'long exposure noise reduction' feature in your camera, if not the camera will spend same time as your exposure to remove the noise generated by the long exposure. The camera is doing a dark frame subtraction, and we lose time to shoot the next burst. The following image was shot at 30 sec, F11, ISO 200.
    Fireworks at Kirkland View from heritage park

    Focusing at night can be a problem. There are a few options to think about.

    (1) If you are standing relatively close to the fireworks, say 100 meters or so, then auto focus is good enough. One of the auto focus points will lock focus on the brightest location in the frame. Some lenses can make this troublesome if it keeps hunting for focus while the bursts create moving light trails fast, and you can lose frames.

    (2) Manual focus is the best friend in this situation.  Use the first few seconds after the show starts to find the focus. Set the camera and lens to auto focus mode and  try to focus at a burst. Once focus is locked, when you see the green dot staying still in the view finder, change lens to manual focus. You can shoot in manual focus mode for the rest of the show.

    (3) We could try manual focus and setup the lens before the show starts. Find a bright object where the fireworks is setup, like  a street light or a boat. You can find police boats patrolling in the waters if you are  in Kirkland. Use live view and do manual focus on the bright object. Take a picture and test sharpness using the LCD. Once you have found the focus, then you need to lock the focus ring of the lens do that you do not change it accidentally. I use a tape to secure the manual focus ring so that it does not move until you remove the take. If your lens has a distance scale on it, then you can mostly remember the location on the lens, so no need to tape it. Focusing at infinity can help if the bursts are far away from you, not a good idea if you are standing close to the fireworks.


    Where to photograph fireworks in Kirkland, on July 4th ?  The Heritage park in Kirkland is one good place to see the fireworks in Kirkland.  You may have to reach there around 6 pm to find a good spot to  setup your tripod. I generally park on the road side near Waverly park, and walk for 1/4 of a mile to the marina or Heritage park. It is easier to walk back to the car and drive away without getting stuck on traffic on the main streets in the city. Fireworks displays are generally short, it happens for only about 15-20 minutes. Shoot fast, apply what ever method you use effectively and fast enough so that you get some keeper images at the end. If you have any questions on the topics discussed in this blog, send me a message, and I will be more than happy to answer them.  Hope you will find time to photograph fireworks on July 4th this time, happy shooting.
    Fireworks at Kirkland View from heritage park

    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Independence day July 4th Kirkland Marina fireworks https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/7/HowTo-photograph-fireworks Mon, 04 Jul 2016 00:51:32 GMT
    Yakima Canyon road https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/3/yakima-canyon-road Yakima Canyon road Yakima valley

    I visit Yakima valley once of two times every year. You drive south east form Seattle for about two and a half hours and you reach this beautiful valley.  If you ask GPS for driving directions, it will take you along I-90 East and then to I-82 East from Ellensburg. This is where you need to make a detour. Before you hit I-82 east, take the Yakima canyon road exit from I-90  and  then drive along  Yakima river, it is Exit 109 on I-90.  The canyon road, the Yakima river and a railway line are almost parallel to each other for several miles, about 20 minutes' drive. It is a pretty interesting drive. I was able to see a slow train, and we followed the train for a few minutes and got some nice views along the way. If it is summer, you cans people enjoying boat or float ride in the river. There is a tour company who does float ride for tourists, it is fun to do. End of summer is the best time to go to Yakima valley if you are interested in wine tasking.  Summer is a good time if you enjoy doing vegetable picking or fruit picking. I enjoy visiting the vineyards in the valley and also do wine tasting in one of the several wineries in the region. It is a good place for spending a weekend, and it is not too far from Seattle. 

    What is interesting about this picture ? I like curves and other geometric shapes in images, and this is one such situation where I could get the long train in the frame that created a beautiful curve. The mountains in the foreground also has a couple of curves, and so is the river. The sky wasn't that great because this was taken during middle of the day.  The partly cloudy sky would have created majestic colors if it was early in the morning or late in the evening, I will try that probably  during my  next trip to Yakima. 


    Exposure : 24 mm, ISO 100,  1/125 sec, F11

    Link to the picture gallery : http://www.muraleephotos.com/p923807171

    Curves, geometric shapes.

    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Yakima Yakima Canyon Yakima river https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/3/yakima-canyon-road Sat, 12 Mar 2016 04:00:00 GMT
    Hot air Balloon festival in Winthrop https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/3/hot-air-balloon-festival-in-winthrop Hot air balloonThe annual Balloon festival at Winthrop,WA

    Have you ever been to Winthrop, Washington on the North cascades ? It is a beautiful little town on the cascade mountains, East of the cascade range. There is a Hot Air Balloon festival that happens during the first weekend in March every year. Around 40 to 50 balloons take off in the morning and it is a colorful scene to watch. It is cold up there and the ground is generally covered in snow and ice during this time, of the year.  I have been to this festival last year and witnessed the event. They plan this an year ahead, but several climatic conditions needs to be satisfied in order for them to fly. The sky should be clear with no or little clouds, the wind speed must be less than 5 miles. They inflate the balloons before the sunrise and they go up in the air around the time when Sun comes up in the horizon. They fly for around one to two hours and come back to the ground when the sun becomes hot. You could drive along north cascade highway ( WA 20 ) to reach there from Seattle. But, that highway is closed in winter, and it is not open until end of march.  So you have to drive through Lake Chelan along  a long  route, from Seattle -> Leavenworth -> Lake Chelan -> Winthrop. It is a long ride, but it is worth the effort. 

    What is interesting about the picture showcased here ? It is the perspective, you look at the same balloon from different angles and at different distances, you get different images.  I find the balloons very colorful with contract n colors a nice object to photograph.


    Exposure : 105 mm, ISO 400,  1/500 sec, F8, -1/3 exposure compensation

    Link to the picture gallery :  http://www.muraleephotos.com/p680439742/h6d617763#h6d617763

    Contrast, colors, perspective.


    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Hot air Balloon Winthrop https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/3/hot-air-balloon-festival-in-winthrop Sat, 05 Mar 2016 04:00:00 GMT
    Suzallo library https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/suzallo-library Suzallo library The reading hall of Suzallo library in Seattle.

    The campus of  the University of Washington  (UW) in Seattle is a really beautiful place.  I visit this place two or three times every year. There are so many interesting things to see here, not just because I am a student there. I will need several blog pages to describe what I have enjoyed seeing there, and Suzallo library is the best among all. It is the main library hall of UW, and it was constructed over a century ago. The interior of the reading hall on the second floor is wonderful and amazing. There are several old beautiful buildings in the campus,  Suzallo library is my favorite. It is near the UW Quad, and also there is a pond nearby on the opposite side of the Quad.   It is a reading hall for the students, but I have seen people from outside visiting. Look at their web site and learn the timings before you plan your visit. The library is closed when the University is closed during vacation times.

    There are several photographic elements to discuss in this image. Most important among them is Symmetrical Balance, it is an interesting composition guideline that helped me get interesting pictures several times in the past. We can find symmetry in nature, and also in buildings and other architectural constructed by man. Reflection of objects in water or glass can create symmetry. An image that shows symmetry is interesting. Look for symmetry when you go out next time, and it is fun when you find some.  If you are photographing inside the library, it is a quiet place, and the camera shutter can produce sound that can disturb the students. So, make sure to use the 'Quiet Mode' in your camera, which will make a less audible noise while you trip the shutter.

    Exposure : 24 mm, ISO 100,  1 sec, F16

    Link to the picture gallery : http://www.muraleephotos.com/p944035014

    Symmetric balance, Quiet mode in camera


    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Seattle Suzallo library UW University of WA https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/suzallo-library Sat, 27 Feb 2016 04:00:00 GMT
    St James cathedral in Seattle https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/st-james-cathedral-in-seattle St James cathedralSt James cathedral in Seattle

    It is a rainy or cloudy day with no sign of Sun out in the sky, but you are free this weekend and you like to go out and  see something interesting, what you can do ? Find a place to do some indoor viewing like the St James Cathedral in Seattle.  This is one thing I like about this beautiful city, I can always find something new to see, there are so many opportunities out there, indoor and outdoor depending on climate. St James cathedral is in Downtown Seattle, and it is easy to get there.  I learned about this beautiful Roman Catholic church six years after living here, it was constructed over  100 years ago, and the architecture is marvelous.  One can always appreciate the struggle with which they developed the beautiful interior, knowing that technology was not that developed at the time it was constructed.  I attended an organized tour inside the church, we can book a tour by getting the details from the web site of the church. It looks like the view from the church towards the ocean was beautiful with no buildings blocking the view at that time, but now the whole place is filled with high-rise buildings and we can hardly see the water from there. If you want to use tripod for taking photos, it is allowed when there is no service happening in the church, but you will need to get permission in advance. 

    I went there two times to this place couple of years ago. Once it was on a rainy day and another time it was a sunny day, thinking that bright Sun will give me better opportunities to photograph the interior. The windows have stained glass and it is very colorful, and you can use a telephoto like 200 mm lens to get close up pictures of the beauty of the glass structures. One thing I learned is that, a cloudy or rainy day is better to get good images of the window glass, the harsh highlight of Sun light will destroy the colors, so a cloudy day is the best. You will need the widest lens available to get the interior  of the church in one image. I just had a 20mm prime, so I did not get the widest image I could possibly get. Creating a panorama is not that feasible in this kind of an environment, because the natural distortion inside the architecture will make it almost impossible to stich the images together. I used a shallow aperture in the image above to get the star effect on the light. When you have a bright light source in the frame (example :  a lamp), proper use of shallow aperture can produce star effects. The quality of the star effect depends on the lens and also the light source.  There are couple more  interesting photographic ideas regarding photographing interiors,  that is for next week.  


    Exposure : 20 mm, ISO 100,  25 sec, Exposure bias +0.3, F22, Camera on tripod, wired remote to release shutter. 

    Link to the picture gallery : http://www.muraleephotos.com/p1036303551

    Star effect, Windows, highlights on a rainy day 


    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Cathedral James Seattle St St James Cathedral https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/st-james-cathedral-in-seattle Tue, 23 Feb 2016 04:00:00 GMT
    Eagles in Puget sound https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/eagles-in-puget-sound EagleEagle found on Fir Island road

    The state of WA  has several locations in the north west where Eagles migrate in winter. When it becomes too cold in Canada, Eagles fly down to WA to hang around for three of four months starting end of November. Eagles come down to WA  during the Salmon migration and they hang out on the Skagit river valley.  Any place like Fir Island, Samish Island, Edison, Conway and Camano Island are good places to watch for Eagles. Any place near Skagit river is good for watching eagles . If you go east on Highway 20 from Burlington,  you can drive along the riverbank  and see eagles resting on trees nearby.  There are some tour companies doing float ride on the Skagit river for eagle watching. You can also see Eagle nest in the Skagit valley, in some places. This means they do not go back to Canada after winter, they live in the valley, it is fun to watch them in spring and early summer.

    I used a 80-400 lens to photograph this Eagle in the picture. I spent some time to learn how to photograph birds in the last summer, and I found it interesting.  A long, fast lens and a camera with high ISO capability is a must in this case, because you need to have over 1/1000 second shutter speed to get a sharp picture of a bird in flight. I once did the float ride in Skagit river. The float is always moving, as you can imagine, and I saw over 300 eagles resting on the trees during a 2 mile long ride on the river. If the bird is in flight, you need to have high shutter speed even if you are stationery. If the bird is resting on a tree, then if the float is moving, the camera is not stationery. So the relative motion of camera with respect to the bird, requires high shutter speed again. I kept the shutter speed to over 1/1500 sec, it was a overcast day with enough light, so I was able to manage to have this shutter speed. Bird photography is one situation where the Image stabilization / Vibration reduction feature in the lens is really useful. If you plan to go and need some information like directions or additional information regarding photographing this place, you can post a message at the bottom of this page, or use the 'Contact' link on my website to send me an e-mail.  


    Exposure : 400mm, ISO 640,  1/640 sec, F5.6


    Link to the picture gallery : http://www.muraleephotos.com/p490982092


    Freezing motion, high shutter speed.

    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/eagles-in-puget-sound Tue, 16 Feb 2016 03:29:31 GMT
    Elk & Bighorn Sheep feeding in Yakima valley https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/elk-bighorn-sheep-feeding-in-yakima-valley Bighorn SheepSheep & Elk feeding in Yakima valley

    The Oak Creek Wildlife Area in Yakima valley is fun to visit in winter months. This place is managed by the State of Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife. A long fence was constructed in the valley to prevent Elk and Bighorn sheep entering the city in winter. When there is snow in the mountains, the wild animals come down to the valley looking for food. The fence prevent them from finding food in winter, so the wildlife preserve had to feeding them in winter, it is a strange practice but I have observed over six hundred Elks gathered in one single place to eat the food provided by the wild life preserve. There is also several hundred Bighorn sheep in a nearby place, next to the Elk feeding station . When the snowfall starts, the animals come down to the feeding station and they hang around in that place until it warm up in February or March. Then they go back to the mountains. The wildlife preserve also provides a ride in the feeding truck so people can see the animals up close from the truck. You need to call them in advance to reserve a  seat for the ride. They do that during the feeding time every day. The ride timings and contact phone numbers are published on their website. The Visitor Center at the Oak Creek Headquarters is located 2 miles west of the junction of Highways 12 and 410 on Highway 12, approximately 20 miles west of Yakima.


    I visited this place couple of times in the past, and it was snowing heavily when I could photograph the animals during the truck ride. It was a unique experience to see the animals while the snow was falling. I had trouble taking pictures because I wasn't able to focus correctly due to the heavy snow flakes coming down. I managed to take a few shots by locking the focus using the back button in my camera. I mostly used a 70-200 lens to photograph the animals, and couple of wide shots with a 24-70 lens. If you plan to go and need some information like directions or additional information regarding photographing this place, you can post a message at the bottom of this page, or use the  Contact  link  to send me an e-mail.


    Exposure : 200mm, ISO 100,  1/320 sec, F4


    Link to the photo gallery : http://www.muraleephotos.com/p628051539


    Back button focus, focus locking.


    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Bighorn Sheep Elk Elk feeding Oak Creek Wildlife Yakima valley https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/elk-bighorn-sheep-feeding-in-yakima-valley Tue, 09 Feb 2016 04:00:00 GMT
    Snow Geese in Skagit valley https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/snow-geese-in-skagit-valley A flock of Snow GeeseSnow Geese in Skagit valley

    The state of WA  has several locations in the north west where birds migrate in winter.  When it becomes too cold in Canada, Alaska and Siberia, birds fly down to WA to hang around for three of four months starting end of November. Snow geese is the most populous one in this region. They come in flocks of tens of thousands and stay in Skagit valley from November till February or even March if it is still not warm enough. If you want to see a flock of Snow Geese, take exit 221  from I-5, and drive west on Fir island road, if you are driving up from Seattle. Then, go west (left from Fir Island road) on Rawlins road. You will hit dead end and you can see water from that point. Snow geese sleep on back waters near Fir Island in the night. If you reach there an hour before the sunrise, you can hear the noise of birds from the water. They take off from water during sunrise and fly out of water, and land in some farm land  nearby looking for feeding.  The taking off and landing of  flocks of Snow geese is an interesting scene to watch.  The flock in this picture was shot on Fir Island road, just 2 miles west of I-5. There several other kind of birds migrate to this area too.

    I mostly used a 70-200 mm lens to photograph Snow geese. You may not be able to get close to a flock that is feeding on a farm, so this focal length is good enough. If you watch the taking off of Geese during the sunrise, a wide angle lens will help to get wide landscape shots with birds and sunrise in the frame. A shutter speed of 1/1250 second was used so that I could get sharp picture of birds that are in flight. An aperture of F8 helped getting enough depth of field, so more of the frame is sharp. I struggled to get the correct white balance in this image. I generally use one of the white balance presets in the camera menu, like cloudy, direct sun, shade, tungsten etc. This image was shot in auto white balance mode and the color temperature  was 6350 Kelvin  in the image, and that looked more warm for me. So I reduced the color temperature during post processing until I got the correct colors in the image, at 4440 Kelvin. I remember, the grass was green, and birds have red skin on their legs, and the feather was white. So, I reduced the color temperature slowly until I felt I got the colors that I saw in the scene.  This is one of the best advantages  of shooting in RAW format, you can adjust the white balance, the RAW file contains maximum amount of dynamic range. I use a simple rule when adjusting the white balance by adjusting the color temperature - white should be white and Red, Green & Blue should look Red, Green and Blue. This is a rule that can be used as a baseline, but if you are editing an image of scenes like Sunset or Sunrise, it is a different story. I want to have warmer colors in the sunset scene, so I adjust the white balance accordingly, I will talk more about it when I post a Sunset shot, another time. 

    Exposure : 70 mm, ISO 800, 1/1250 second, F8

    Link to the photo  gallery : http://www.muraleephotos.com/p875727094


    Telephoto lens for Snow geese, white balance , high shutter speed for birds in flight.

    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Bird photography Bird watching Fir island Puget Sound Snow geese https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/2/snow-geese-in-skagit-valley Tue, 02 Feb 2016 04:00:00 GMT
    Palouse in winter https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/1/palouse-in-winter Palouse in winterPalouse in winter

    The Bing.com home page showcased a photo from Palouse once, and that encouraged me to click at the hot spots on the page to learn more about the beautiful landscape in Eastern Washington. It is a large area of around four hundred square miles of rolling hills with mostly wheat fields and also other crops like mustard and other vegetables. I have been visiting this place for the past five years at least once in every summer.  This place is around five hour drive from Seattle. Steptoe Butte state park is one of the most interesting places in this region, you can drive up to the Butte to see sunrise or sunset, and also 360 degree view of the region to see the rolling hills of Palouse. The Palouse waterfall is the State Waterfall of WA and it is also another interesting place to visit on the way to Eastern Washington. You can find a hotel in Colfax or Pullman to stay overnight to spend the whole weekend there. It is a beautiful location to enjoy  weekend scenic ride, but it is not at all crowded by tourists. You will find photographers in the prime locations on almost every day. It is fun to visit this place in early summer when the crops are growing, and the rolling hills will be in lush green color, this is probably the time when more people visit this region.  I also love to visit this place during the end of summer when the wheat is ready for harvest, and they will be in gold color. It is a scene to see. I visited this place in winter this year for the first time, a couple of weeks ago and I realized I missed amazing views in the past years. The rolling hills have more gorgeous look in winter, after some snow falls on the ground. You can find map of 'Palouse scenic byway' online, and also do not forget to visit the  Wagon wheel fence at the Dahmen Barn in Uniontown. 


    Let me talk a little bit about the way I captured this picture. I drive around in this region and stop when I see some nice landscape, then I grab my camera and take a picture. I use tripod and do more careful arrangements in summer, but it is too cold here in winter, so it is easier to shoot the image in a couple of minutes and get back into the car. In this condition, I generally set ISO to 400, and aperture to F8 to get enough depth of field and sharpness in the image, then shot hand holding the camera, adjusting the shutter speed to get the correct exposure. The image above is mostly white, so if I set the camera to an auto mode like aperture priority mode, then  the resulting image is going to be dark mostly, underexposed. When there is more white elements in the frame, camera's light meter is going to almost fail to calculate the exposure correctly, measuring for the white and gray. So we need to add 1-3 EV of exposure to get the correct exposure.  I used to think I could shoot in manual exposure, so I get a better image. But wait, it is the same sensor that is doing the light metering, so weather in Auto mode, or Manual mode, the exposure calculated by the camera is going to be the same. So, take a picture, look at the preview in the LCD and adjust the exposure by adding +1-3 stops more of light. You can add exposure compensation in auto mode, or adjust shutter speed in manual mode. I had to add 2 stops of exposure in the image above. I used matrix metering in this case, there are some situations where spot metering helps to find the correct exposure in similar situations, we will discuss that some other time.  Steptoe Butte state park is one of my favorite location to spend time during the sunset and sunrise, so I can photograph the rolling hills under the golden light. A telephoto lens will help to zoom into small areas and get more features of the landscape in the images. I prefer to use 200 mm or  higher focal length for the rolling hills, and a wide angle like 24-70 for wide shots. 


    Exposure : ISO 400, 1/160 second, F8


    Exposing for snow, telephoto lens for rolling hills..


    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Palouse winter https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/1/palouse-in-winter Tue, 26 Jan 2016 04:00:00 GMT
    Snoqualmie falls https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/1/SnoqualmieFalls Snoqualmie falls Snoqualmie falls, when the Snoqualmie river is flooded.

    Snoqualmie falls is one of the beautiful waterfalls in Washington state. It is one of the attractions in the list of must-to-do things if you are new to Seattle or visiting. It is 45 minutes’ drive from downtown Seattle. If you ask the GPS, it will guide you through I-90, but the Fallcity Road ( WA 202 ) from Redmond to Fallcity offer better views along the way. I have been to this waterfall several times in the past few years, but I chose two occasions more interesting to visit compared to others 1) when the Snoqualmie river is flooded caused by heavy rain, there is lot more water than in the other seasons, so it is lot more interesting 2) when  it is very cold in winter, when the temperature drops below 20F. The walls will have build-up of ice around the fall, and that gives another beautiful scene. The view from the observation deck on 202 is very nice, but you can also hike down to the base, it is a fun hike down to the river to see the falls from the lower basin, weather permits. It will be slippery if it is raining or snowing, so just be careful. You could also drive down to the lower parking lot, through the SE Fish Hatchery Road, you will find it  a couple of miles west of the falls. 

    I prefer to shoot waterfalls either in the evening after the sunset, or in the morning before the sunrise. The light will be soft and not strong, so getting a slow shutter speed is easy at those times. Slow shutter gives a cotton candy feeling for the water, it is  pleasing for the eyes, and it implies motion too.  I ended up here in the afternoon when the light was bright, but it was cloudy and drizzling, so the light was soft enough. I had to use a solid ND filter to step down to 2.5 seconds shutter speed, and I used an aperture of F13 to get front to back sharpness in the frame.  If I were able to shoot this image in the evening or morning when the light is not bright, I could just use a circular polarizer filter instead of ND filter. It will help remove any  glare caused by water, it will produce higher saturation of colors, it can help remove any un-wanted reflections, and also allows to lose 1.5 to 2 stops of light, to achieve a slow shutter.  It is good to have slow shutter speed, but make sure not to make the water too soft, it may not be interesting all the time. We need silky feeling in the water, but we also need to keep some features in the flowing water, so we need to find that right shutter speed to get that perfect cotton candy feeling (somewhere between 0.5 second to 3 seconds) .  The camera was on tripod and it was set to the base ISO 100.

    Exposure : ISO 100, 2.5 seconds, F13

    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Snoqualmie falls seattle waterfall https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2016/1/SnoqualmieFalls Tue, 19 Jan 2016 01:53:46 GMT
    Notes from 'behind the lens' workshop https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2015/10/notes-from-behind-the-lens-workshop


    Exposure triangle

    • Aperture, Shutter Speed, ISO
    • Light meter reads the values and calculate the correct exposure.
    • Dynamic range –camera can see 6-8 stops of light, eyes can see 16
    • Auto mode
    • Aperture priority –story telling, subject isolation , low light, long exposure
    • Shutter priority –freeze motion, panning, imply motion


    Light, exposure

    • At least six possible exposures in any situation
    • Light -soft light, golden light, day light, flash light
    • One F-stop at a time
    • F2.8, F4, F5.6, F8, F11, F16, F22
    • F2.8 at 1/1000 is same exposure as F4 at 1/500 sec
    • Learn manual exposure mode



    • Find the one best aperture
    • Depth of field, shallow to wide
    • Wide aperture in low light
    • Wide aperture to isolate subject
    • Story telling apertures, to get front to back sharpness
    • F8 , F11 . . . . sharpest, leaves on the floor, portrait against a wall etc.
    • Exercise - photograph a face with different apertures, to show shallow background and depth field.


    Shutter speed

    • Find the one best shutter speed
    • Sunny 16 rule
    • Moon 11 rule
    • Freeze motion, (People=1/200,sports = 1/500, wild life 1/1000 –1/2000, rain 1/50 for rain )
    • Long exposure ( Eg : traffic trails, moving light, waterfall, star trails, ND filter)
    • Panning ( freeze motion with panning @ 1/30 sec )
    • Exercise - Shoot water fall at different shutter speeds, same exposure, different result. Use shutter speeds of 1/200 second, 1/10 second and 1 second. You can photograph a waterfall, or any small stream of water, or even water  flowing from a tap to see the same experience.   
    • Exercise - Shoot ferry’s wheel at different shutter speeds, same exposure, different result (this one needs traveling to Seattle downtow2n waterfront, of course). If you can find any device with a rotating wheel in it, you can do similar experiment. A wall clock or a desk alarm clock with a seconds needle also will work as subject here.



    • Light sensitivity of the sensor
    • Keep at lowest ISO possible to avoid noise.
    • Long exposure noise reduction
    • Noise reduction using tools like Nik Define, Lightroom
    • Exercise - Photograph the front page of a magazine in different ISO modes, to show increase in noise as we increase the ISO. Use any magazine or cover page of a book.


    White balance

    • Color balance
    • Color temperature


    Un-Sharp images –common causes

    • Avoid camera shake
    • shutter speed1/mm , reciprocal rule
    • Image stabilization or hold camera steady
    • Use a tripod
    • Motion blur due to movement of subject
    • Use shutter priority mode ,
    • People = 1/200, sports = 1/500, wild life 1/1000 –1/2000
    • Shallow depth of field can cause blurry photo
    • Use shallow aperture , like F8 or shallower
    • Missed focus
    • Use single focus point
    • Use a shallow f-stop
    • Air quality
    • Long focal length means hazy and humid if subject is far away
    • Go closer to subject if possible


    How to get sharp images

    • Use tripod
    • Use cable release or remote or timer
    • Lock mirror
    • Use fast enough shutter speed
    • Switch off Vibration reduction / Image stabilization while on tripod
    • Shoot at Lens’s sharpest aperture , 2 stops from widest
    • Avoid high ISO if possible
    • Shoot in burst mode, chance that one will be sharp
    • Zoom in to check sharpness
    • Use a fast memory card



    Portraits / people / outside / Inside

    Some technical stuff

    • Chose background . .. don’t want it to be busy
    • Position camera at eye level, lower or raise the camera
    • Avoid harsh sun light .. look for shade, or cloudy day
    • Use a diffuser, flash bender or Gary Fong
    • Built-in flash to fill shadows, make sure to ON flash (15 ft)
    • Use flash to darken or lighten the background of the subject
    • Use a flash to freeze motion in portraits
    • Flash not required always
    • Telephoto zoom for portraits ( 100mm or close )
    • F2.8 -> nice bokeh,f11-> more background visible
    • Shoot in portrait orientation if one person


    How you get the shot

    • What lens to use, what aperture to use etc. are easy technical details to find
    • Connect with the subject, make a relation with the subject, and capture the moments
    • Watch the subject through the lens, slow down, stay calm and concentrate ( Eg: dancer, kid, runner )
    • Ask your subject to help you learn to become a better photographer
    • Don’t ask subject to smile, make them smile


    Some composition rules

    • Obey the rule of thirds
    • No implanting of subject, no horns behind the head
    • Make sure to fix hair, ask model
    • Check where to cut hands, Eg : don’t show back of subjects hand
    • Don’t cut limbs
    • Don’t chop forehead
    • Focus in the dominant eye
    • Keep both eyes focused
    • Compose tight, more appealing
    • Chin down, always
    • Get couples really close
    • Make sure to focus the girl correctly, you can ignore the guy


    Some special situations

    • How to shoot a sunset portrait
    • Better portraits with a reflector
    • For group shots, don’t use rows, use clutters, and leave no space between people

    Photographing stage performance

    • No flash absolutely, there is enough light on the stage to give you good images
    • You want to capture the color and vibrance of the stage lights
    • You want to capture the moments as you see on the stage
    • Use a high ISO to give you 1/125 shutter speed at a moderate aperture
    • Lights constantly change, shooting a performance on stage is really challenging
    • Use the lens with the widest aperture you have, like an F2.8 lens
    • Use a noise reduction software, like Nik Define
    • If sitting close to stage, you will need both a wide angle lens and a telephoto
    • Use a monopod if sitting in the same place, so you can relax your hands
    • Watch the stage through the lens always, and click when the moment happens
    • Shoot in burst mode when important moments happen on stage, so u don’t miss a thing
    • Aperture priority, spot metering


    Creating a Panorama image

    • Use a tripod
    • Shoot vertical
    • White balance –use one of the presets
    • Use manual exposure
    • Use manual focus –focus at one place in the center of the scene, then switch lens to manual focus
    • Overlap by 25-40 %
    • Shoot quickly, the scene may change due to moving clouds
    • Use cable release (eg. $6 Velo ) to avoid camera shake
    • Use Photoshop, Lightroom, or ICE to stich the panorama
    • If you use Photoshop, you can hand hold camera and shoot


    Rules of composition

    • Rule of thirds
    • Leading lines
    • Diagonals
    • Framing –use natural frames like windows and doors
    • Find a contrast between subject and background
    • Fill the frame
    • Center the dominant eye
    • Patterns and repetition
    • Symmetrical balance




    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Notes behind digital from howto lens photography the tips tutorials workshop https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2015/10/notes-from-behind-the-lens-workshop Mon, 26 Oct 2015 04:59:19 GMT
    Digital Photoghraphy - Newbie's Guide https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2015/9/digital-photoghraphy---newbies-guide As a newbie, think about how you want to use the camera. Are you just planning to take pictures of your growing kid, family ? Is it just for capturing some moments while travelling ? or, do you really have interest in learning  photography ?  What is your motivation? Start with an entry level camera, DSLR or mirror less or  point and shoot.  It mostly doesn’t matter what you buy first. Think about how much time and effort you will like to invest in the learning process.  Ask friends, or there are several resources online like Ron’s blog to do the initial research on cameras. Don’t set a  budget to buy your first camera, just buy an entry level camera first. If you decide ‘I want to spend $2000, and what is the best camera I can buy’, then your pictures are not going to be better than your iPhone pictures, if you really do not learn how to use it well.

    Once you buy a camera, learn how to use the camera well. Understand different modes in the camera like Aperture priority, Shutter priority, Manual mode. These are the only three modes required in any camera, trust me. Learn focusing modes.  Find a book similar to ‘Sony NEX 7 for dummies’, that kind of  books are available for most popular cameras. Read your camera’s manual. Many cameras have built in features for panorama, HDR, fast moving objects ( kids ) , night shots etc. Understand the capabilities of your camera well. It may be just a click at the right moment, with the right mode set,  that is all required to get an image that captures a moment.

    Understand exposure . . .  Aperture, Shutter speed and ISO . . understand the relation between these three well, this will teach you the basics of light. Experiment by shooting every day. Don’t let the camera chose more than one of Aperture, Shutter speed and ISO.  Go to  library and browse Photography books, read a few pages and keep browsing until you find a book that you like. You do not need to read a book just because I like it, find a book that has a presentation that you like to read. I find Bryan Peterson’s ‘Understanding Exposure’ and ‘Understanding Shutter Speed’ great resources to learn the basics of photography. I use them as references.  Watch 500px.com and look at interesting images, it is a great free resource. You will also find tutorials explaining how to shoot this kind of pictures’ type of  topics.

    Understand depth of field . . .  Learn how the (1) focal length, (2) aperture or (3) the distance between the subject and lens can affect the depth of field. Learn  how to take a picture of your kid with blurred background. I am sure everyone likes such pictures, learn how to do that, you can do it with any camera, including a point and shoot. Understand and analyze what depth of field you need in different kind of situations, do you need sharpness throughout  the frame, or do you want to isolate the subject using depth of field ?  Remember, you do not need a pro camera to get interesting pictures.  KCLS, and Lynda.com have got several resources that teach you basics of photography.

    Composition  . . .   why I did not tell my cousin so far about Composition ? Because you don’t  worry about it initially, keep taking  pictures and learn what you really like to capture, then find books or courses  and learn more about techniques to shoot those kind of pictures.  If you have already spend a few months with your first camera and you are becoming more passionate about making good images, then learn more about compositions. If you understand what is composition, if you have come this far, then I see passion and interest in you, so keep leaning. Find out ways to learn compositions, watch pictures on Flickr, 500px or post your pictures there to get feedback. Join your local photo club if there is any, learn from the members, go for photo walks and  share experience and learn.  There are several photography groups on Facebook, make sure to join some closed groups so you watch only a limited set of images, not thousands in a day.

    Don’t upgrade your gear . . . until you know why you want to upgrade. Upgrade your camera or lens after you learn how to exploit the capabilities of them well. Once you understand the limitations of it, and if you are finding it interesting to spend more effort to learn more and do more, then only upgrade. You will find importance of Flash, Tripod, Remote trigger, Editing etc. slowly. Shoot  JPG images and keep doing that until you find the limitations of it. Lightroom is probably the best and easy to learn editing tool for a beginner. AdobeTv has plenty of free tutorials to learn Lightroom, and also Photoshop if you end up start using Photoshop.

    YouTube is a great resource to find videos . . .  also know that it has a lot of junk. There is not much Pro quality stuff out there. There are some nice video tutorials there, make sure to watch them only if you know the author. I have enjoyed watching YouTube  videos of  Dave Morrow (night photography and post processing), Bryan Peterson ( the perfect picture ), Tony Northup, Antony Morganti (editing in  Lightroom ), Nasim Mansurov( photography tips , gear reviews and lot more stuff), Scott Kelby, Justin Reznick (landscape photography, editing), Gary Fong, just some names to quote. There are some tiny books from national geographic like ‘photography tips for travelers’, I find such books at Half price Books and it is cheaper there. Read Lighting 101 - A Beginner's Lighting Kit  at strobist.com if you have bought a flash.  I find Scott Kelby’s  ‘The Digital Photography Book’  Parts 1 – Part 4 interesting to read.
    If you still want to continue to learn, join some serious training at PCNW or similar photography schools. Have classroom sessions with a pro photographer, or have a one-on-one with Ron,  subscribe to some classes like Kelby training. There are workshops conducted by several pro photographers in specialized areas of photography, find some that suits your interest and attend and keep learning. Subscribe to magazines like ‘popular photography’. Read gear reviews.

    You bought a DSLR, you used it for a few months, and you find it too heavy and not interestign to use ?  You will be happier if you sell it and buy a mirror less camera instead. I have a cousin who did that, and he is perfectly happy today.


    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) Digital Guide Newbie Guide Photoghraphy dslr howoto photography https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2015/9/digital-photoghraphy---newbies-guide Wed, 30 Sep 2015 22:02:01 GMT
    Rattle Snake ledge https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2014/5/rattle-snake-ledge We had an awesome hike to the rattlesnake ledge on last Saturday morning. We reached the trail head around 10 am in the morning. It was cloudy, so the weather was very pleasant, not hot nor cold, perfect weather ort hiking. There are a bunch of parking lots around the lake at the foot hills, all of them were full and people started parking on the road side already. We pulled over on the road side and parked on the side, and walked to the trail head, a five minutes’ walk.


    Here is a panoramic view of the Lake form the ledge. Copyright Muraleedharan Raghavan


    There were a lot of people hiking, it was a perfect day for hiking, and the long weekend added to the crowd.  We reached the top within an hour, and the view from the top was amazing. We could see the cascade mountain range clearly and the water in the lake looked blue.


    Here is another view of the lake from the park near the trail head. Copyright Muraleedharan Raghavan

    (www.MuraleePhotos.com) ledge Rattle Snake https://www.muraleephotos.com/blog/2014/5/rattle-snake-ledge Mon, 26 May 2014 20:32:18 GMT