The Tahoe National Forest has a yearly photo contest and for 2017, it was recently announced that our proud member Joe Dondelinger has won both first and second places!!
“Celestial Wilderness” by Joseph Dondelinger, (Castle Peak)
Note from the Photographer: This is one of my most achieved photos to date planned months ahead of time! This photo is actually a blend of two images taken at very precise and critical times at the same position and angle. On July 22, 2015, I set off on the brutal 1200 foot backpack trip up to near the top of Castle Peak carrying over 60 pounds of gear, including all of my camera equipment! I also carried up my iOptron Sky Tracker, which plays a crucial role in capturing the most detailed shot of the Milky Way possible and was the first image I captured, which also had to be taken in between the sunset and moonrise 45-minute window. During the 4-minute tracked exposure, I managed to capture a spectacular meteor to the south! After this shot, I moved the camera just a few inches over to a stationary tripod keeping the same angle and prepared for the moonrise so I could capture the foreground image just a few minutes later! Timing was impeccable with this as I had to shoot my foreground quick and on time just as the moon was rising, so the moonlight and the warm glow from the headlamp in my tent stay in the right balance! Then finally later in post production I blended the two images together. What I love most about this image is how I can truly reflect upon my memories of just how amazing this little camp spot was that night and the success of all of my hard work to achieve this photo!
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Welcome back to the forest! We wrote another book! Our new book is MAGICAL FOREST FAIRY CRAFTS THROUGH THE SEASONS. Celebrate every season with whimsical crafts inspired by nature. We’re delighted to share new fairies, gnomes, and crafts. The new book releases in August, 2018. Preorder your copy today. And find our first book, FOREST FAIRY CRAFTS, to entertain you while you wait. Hip hip hurrah!