Mountain Photography with Lakes and Bears Video

The Olympic Mountains are for wandering. There was a good weather window for a few days.So I packed my backpack and headed out the door. Sometimes you need to be spontaneous in order to have a great adventure! The plan was to hiking in along a river valley trail, and gain elevation into the mountains. Once in the high country, we would setup base camp and day hike off trail into remote parts of the Park. The goal was to capture late season photographs of the autumn color, and to enjoy the last of the autumn color.

All the wildlife we saw, was just an added bonus to the adventure.

Olympic Mountains
Autumn Photography in the Olympic Mountains

Mountain Photography Video Transcripts

Overnight Hike Into Mountains

Alright guys, decided to do a little quick backpacking trip here for the weekend. It was high pressure over the area, so decided to try to sneak in the high country and there's also warm weather, so the snow's been melting really fast up high, so going to try to get some late-late season subalpine into Alpine autumn color shots, with my real camera, so hopefully it all goes good.

We got about 15 or 18 miles today, before we get to the campsite, we'll see how we feel and then tomorrow climb up into the mountains, so here we go.

Alright, you have the mysterious forest here, Suns just hitting us feels good. You can see the nice bull staring at us. It's probably kind of hard to see with this camera, but it's nice.

Well, that's where we're heading up there tomorrow. We'll see how it goes.

Alright, we're in here. We've got about a mile and a half to get to our campsite, about an hour before dark. Pretty tired. Need to be sitting in camp right now, eating food, cuz sounds good to me. Nice, 600 feet elevation left.

Suns going down, it's actually about sixty degrees out here, there is an inversion right now, and we're almost in November, kinda crazy. Alright, better get to the campsite.

High Country Camping

Alright, we are up here finding a campsite, before gets dark here. Let's find something and get the tent set up. Not a shabby evening.

I got camp set up, it's past sunset, so I better make some dinner, mountain view. Looking forward to waking up tomorrow morning to the mountains, very nice.

Alright, making dinner, and then I'm going to lay down and do it all over again tomorrow. We'll see you in the morning.

Pre-Sunrise Photography

Alright, up before sunrise here. Woke up about an hour ago. Already had two cups of coffee. So I'm all amped up and ready to go here. Well I'm heading up the basin, away from camp, and I'm gonna try to capture sunrise on the mountains. Broke out my real camera, so we'll see how it goes. It's gonna be a fun day.

Alright, climbed up here on the hillside in the dark, trying to find a composition. I could choose between a creek or the autumn colored Basin, and I opted for the color, and I might shoot the creek on the way out, back to camp, but you probably can't see really, because it's dark still, there's the tripod and then, I got the basin in the foreground and in the mountain in the background, and now I wait to see if any light shows up on the mountain there, so sometimes photography is all about patience, so I'll wait for 30 minutes or so and see what happens.

It's been about 20 minutes now and I'm starting to feel kind of guilty / impatient I guess. We still have a huge day hike today, to get to the lakes we're trying to go, so I'm kind of tight on time this morning; unfortunately. So I'm gonna go wander down to the creek and see if I can find another composition, but as I say that, the light actually starts to change on the mountains, so we'll see. I need to go down to camp and eat breakfast still, but I might wait here few more minutes, now that I'm seeing that, but just in case, my camera settings are f-16 and I got a focused on the mid-ground, at ISO 100, so let's take this picture and then wait to see if something else happens and then we'll wander down to the creek. I hope you guys enjoy the photo.

Well sure enough, it paid off. All I had to wait five more minutes and then started to get some light on the mountain. That's why I hiked up here, so it's pretty amazing, so I'm gonna go head back down, and see if I can find another the composition.

Day Hiking from Campsite

Alright, back at camp now, time to eat breakfast and pack up, and then head up the trail, see what we can find here for the day. I know I'm probably gonna be taking pictures all day or want to anyways, but it gets dark pretty early these days. I got to keeping an eye on time.

Alright, we're hiking along here, with the day pack, camera,food, water and turn around. You get these superb views. Autumn color, so let's go see if I can find a composition. Right now, the light is so contrast or or has the shadows, and then this bright light on the mountain, it'd be hard to capture properly, without doing photo stacking, so maybe if I wait a little bit later, I can get the light in the foreground as well, we'll see. Alright, better get on it.

We're coming along the trail here. Get a nice view of the valley, see a few peaks and I don't know if you can see that from the video, you can see the river down the valley, that's the way we came up, a little bit of autumn color there in the valley, and some color up here. Alright I'll continue on.

Alright, I'm climbing up following an elk trail. Got to go up there where the light is. Times like these, let you know how out of shape you are, but that's ok, it's late-season. Winters for being lazy I guess. Alright, I better get up there!

Alright, almost at the top, just right there. Autumn and golden light is waiting for me. I have to take a break up there, and enjoy the views hopefully.

Huge Basin with Lakes, Elk and Bears

Alright, highpoint up here, and I figured there'd be bears up here, probably see more, there's a small herd of bears right there, one's kind of rearing up just to look, and one just saw me I think, and they're moving out. Superb views, nice autumn color, you can see the Bears running away there. That might even be a mom and two cubs, but they're older Cubs, and then we rotate around over here into the sun, get some snow capped peaks; from the last snow, and some little tarns and lakes; beautiful.

Alright, high in the basin, got a composition set-up, thought was to put this leading way trail, and this red, in the lower right third, have those tarns be kind of in the mid-ground and then you got this beautiful snow-capped peak there, views as a subject in the background, so I hope you guys enjoy the photo. I'm going to continue on wandering for the afternoon, and taking some more photos, and try to get some more of that red action.

Wandering around the basin looking at color. Checking out this lake here. If I get a good angle on it, I'll take out my real camera, but right now the cellphone will do. Sitting by the lake, wander in the basin and looking for a composition. I'm gonna head up on the hillside over there, probably can't see very good, but there's two bears eating, on the backside of the lake over there; where I'm heading. I hope they let me pass.

There's another bear moving out, that's good. Thanks for letting me by. There's me there's another bear over by that rock, at least this one sees me. What's the worst-case scenario is coming around the corner, and having it not smell you, and being face to face with the bear, that's not fun. Alright, let's continue on, I'm gonna try to find a composition up here.

I looked my head up, and there was a big bull, standing right in that notch, between the trees, so I'm gonna cautiously go up there, because that's where I was heading anyways, but you got-to watch out for bulls this time of year, a little too much testosterone.

Turns out, it was not just a bull. There's a whole herd, and I gotta keep my eyes open because, I haven't seen the bull run off yet, it means he's probably still around here somewhere.

Oh climbed up here to this very high point, trying to get over everything to see if I can find a composition. Probably start heading back now, but you can't beat the view, especially if you don't like heights.

Mountain and Lakes Photography

Got some color, lakes, mountains, can't beat the view. I'll have to see if I want to set-up my tripod, somewhere around here or not. I'm here on the side of the mountain, thought I'd get a picture, since I climbed up here, why not.

I'm the thought is to put the bottom right third, this red, and then that lake, somewhere in the center, the mountains in the background, and try to find an even balance with everything. The mountains kind of tricky, because of the slopes to the right, and that kind of naturally draws your eye that way, so you got-to keep that mind, when you're doing the composition, but I hope you guys enjoy the photo anyways.

Hiking Back to Camp

I got to start heading back to camp, if I want to make it before dark.

bye-bye elke Pooh's. I just can't believe this color, it's amazing!

Finial Evening In the Mountains

Tell you what, it's nice to have camp set up already. Then you could just come back to, you get this nice view out the door.

Well it's time to eat, and then probably get some pretty good shut-eye, from being the Sun all day, we'll see, and then tomorrow got like 18 miles or so, out of here. So, we'll probably see in the morning, unless something interesting happens tonight.

Hiking Out of the Mountains

Alright, breaking down my camp, this morning is day three. You can see my sleeping pad, already put my others air mattress away, some other things in there, got some socks drying on the tripod, my sleeping bag is already in my backpack, oatmeal is cooking for breakfast, and then we got some light on the mountain there.

It's gonna be 18 mile day out. We'll just take it a chunk at a time, there's plenty of autumn color on the way, to distract the mileage, so let's get packed up here, and get a move on. See you down the trail.

Bye-bye high country, see you next year, probably, maybe winter, but I doubt it.