I may be stuck in the house during work hours but the view out of the window doesn’t have to be totally ignored. We have had a bunch of changeable weather recently and I have been shooting time lapses of the clouds. The M6 works well for this but I have been using my fisheye lens on the M adaptor to get a wide view of what is going on out there. It has proved to be interesting as a review the footage later. Some of the skies have lots of activity while others don’t.
Sometimes we get the winds pulling the clouds across the sky but the overcast is thick and the lack of heat on the ground means that the clouds are pretty stable. On other days we get almost constant development and dissipation of the clouds. We are on a hill so we can get quite localized development around us. Sometimes you have lower level clouds going one way and higher level clouds heading somewhere else.
I put together a video that includes a variety of clips from these time lapses to show how different things can be on different days (or even at different times of the same day!).
The herons at Juanita Bay are not universally popular. The red-winged blackbirds are not keen on them at all and, since it seems that the herons may have raided one or more of the nests, it isn’t hard to see why. The blackbirds will get quite aggressive at trying to drive the herons away from their nests. I have seen them do this on more than one occasion. At one point, I got some video of a heron getting attacked by two of the blackbirds although it wasn’t keen on leaving its fishing spot. Usually, though, the herons decide to move on rather than take the abuse.
The Cascade Bicycle Club organizes a few large rides throughout the year and March is the time for the Chilly Hilly. This is a ride around Bainbridge Island which means taking the ferry from Seattle across to the island. I was going to do the ride with a friend of mine but he got injured prior to the ride so I ended up doing it alone. Not many photos from the ride but I did record some video on a GoPro and that result of that is below. It wasn’t too chilly but it was definitely hilly! No video from the big climbs. Too much effort went in to not grinding to a halt!
This winter, the area around Shilshole Bay in Seattle has had some new residents. It is not unusual for sea lions to be in the area at this time of year but this year they have taken to hanging out on the floating docks around the bay. One favorite spot for them is the barrier alongside Ray’s Boathouse. This barrier has a flat top to it but is based on cylindrical tanks. Consequently, while a bunch of sea lions might be on top of it, another one climbing on or one jumping off can cause the whole thing to rotate and, if they are not careful, they can get dumped in the water.
A lot of people have been coming down to watch them hanging out. A bunch will be on the floats, some asleep and others barking at each other or the sea lions trying to get on. More can be seen swimming around in the surrounding area. It was fun to watch them for a while but it was pretty chilly the day we were there so we didn’t hang around for too long!
One weekend afternoon, we took a walk through Discovery Park in Seattle. We started up near to the top of the park and then took a trail that brought us down to the shore. The trail continued along to the lighthouse at which point we started back to our origination point. As we walked along the shore, the wind was quite brisk and it was proving to be fun for some guy that was out kite surfing. Not only was he enjoying the conditions but I think he quite liked the attention. He was very close in to the shore so was being watched by a lot of people doing the same thing as us. I shot a little video of him before moving on and here is what I saw.
Tokul Creek Gorge is the waterway that runs under the trestle at Tokul. With the heavy rains that had been falling in advance of my visit, the creek was flowing heavily. The trestle is a long way above the water so it was not easy to get a good look at it but I did try and get some shots. I also had a go at getting some video.
Our hotel room in Victoria was near to the top of the building. The window was set into the roof line. We had a flat space outside the window and it was popular with the local bird life. On several occasions, we had a gull land on the space and stand there for a while. It actually seemed interested in us rather than deterred by our presence. No guarantee that it is the same bird but we started to feel like it was visiting us on a regular basis.
The testing of the Eviation Alice continues. My first post on this was when they tried to do some high speed taxi trials but didn’t manage to get the plane going. However, they have been making more progress since. I managed to get up there when they were planning some more taxi trials. I was hoping for some more fast work which they delivered. Not fast enough to get the nose wheel off yet but progress all the same.
A few photographers were out to see what occurred. The test team did not seem too happy about the level of interest. I think they would prefer to get early testing work done without the world watching. They did have their own multimedia team, of course. Various cameras were doing the official recording and some drone work was done as they carried out the trials. A NOTAM for the UAV was in place for several days. I went with stills and video and put some stuff together for GAR and here is some of what I got. Let’s hope to get more as they progress.
Living in the Midwest provided plenty of stormy weather days. The way in which the storms could brew up on warm afternoons was really impressive. I have always loved lightning and sometimes we got so much of it, you would stop paying attention. One afternoon, there was a storm forecast to roll across the city. I decided to head out to the planetarium since it has a great view of the city and I was hoping for lightning behind the skyline or maybe even on some of the high buildings. I am not sure whether it is a thing but it seemed like the lightning would be more prevalent at the leading and trailing edges of the storm so I was hoping to get shots before the rain made it no fun to be outside.
Things didn’t work out quite as planned and there wasn’t the lightning I was hoping for. However, I did get some amazing cloud formations rolling across the city. Watching this come towards me, it was hard to recognize that this wasn’t some CGI on a movie but was actually heading my way. It looked amazing. It wasn’t long before I retreated to the car once the rain showed up.
On another occasion, I was flying in to Midway. As we made the turn back towards the city after flying out over Lake Michigan, a really intense storm cell was sitting north of the city. It came into view as we turned and I videoed it with my phone. It was another beast of a storm, and it was probably rather damp underneath it.
Our trip to Cannon Beach got delayed a day by snow on the hills which you have to cross to get to the Oregon coastline. When we did make the crossing, not only were we properly equipped (as shall be seen in another post) but the weather was transformed. The sun was out, and it looked picturesque. The snow was still heavy on the trees and the hillsides while the road was compacted snow. Consequently, it was white everywhere. We were on a major road that would normally be traversed at speed but, due to the traction devices fitted, we were limited to 25mph. It made the crossing pretty protracted, but it did provide ample time to look around and see the scenery – and the occasional vehicle off the road!