Mt. Conness
Saddlebag Lake, 10/2003 (02259)

Mt. Conness and its fast disappearing glacier lie just to the north of Tioga Pass. Since the end of the Pleistoscene, glacial run-off has fed Lee Vining Creek, which in turn now provides water and hydro-electric power for the town of Lee Vining. Although the creek feeds Saddlebag Lake before plummeting down the eastern face of the Sierra below Tioga Pass, the lake was in its natural state much smaller prior to a dam being built over its outlet in 1919. The lake's elevation at 10,087 feet is close to treeline and vegetation is relatively sparse. As a consequence, images of Mt. Conness and Saddlebag Lake tend to be quite stark and to my mind best rendered in monochrome.

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Mt. Conness, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)

End of the Eclipse
San Francisco, 01/2018 (10569)

With a full moon on both the 2nd and 31st, January 2018 was a rare blue moon month. Subject to a full eclipse, this image shows the moon setting behind the Golden Gate with just a small remaining penumbra. A bit of lunar trivia indicates that mating season for wolves typically occurs in February, and they begin howling at the moon to court prospective mates in January. For this reason, Native Americans referred to the January full moon as the "Wolf Moon". The wolves got lucky in January 2018 with two Wolf moons, giving our lupine friends a second shot at courtship as the month ended.

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End of the Eclipse, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)

Water Over the Edge
Yosemite Falls, 04/2018 (10746)

Beethoven admonishes us that, regardless of the creative path we follow, art as does "music should strike fire from the heart of man, and bring tears from the eyes of woman". So, the next time you're in Yosemite shoulder to shoulder with the rest of your species, fighting for a place to put your graphite tripod with its $5,000 camera, remember that alternative bit of aesthetic canon. Then go and attempt to capture an image of the world that few others have yet to see, nor comprehend, nor feel.

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Water Over the Edge, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)

Jenner Beach, 11/2011 (08661)

Sanderlings are those delightful little birds that race the Pacific's waves as they break upon California's long sandy beaches. As probably do most of us who enjoy a late afternoon walk along the sand, I take a great delight in sharing the joy these little, feathered creatures must experience as they sprint along the narrow, wet margin left by the dying waves. Whether capturing images of their own species or wildlife, to my mind the successful photographer is the individual who can most truly and accurately empathize with their subject.

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Sanderlings, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)

Village Wall
Taos Pueblo, 06/2014 (09245)

We never capture physical objects in our photographs - only light. While more acceptable to the phenomenologically grounded f.64 cabal, this statement may be troublesome for the Platonists among us. As a conceptual alternative, photography might be better viewed as a synthesis of technology, human perception, and specific templates or 'motifs' that lie in our sub-conscious. This synthesis allows us to organize observed reality into an aesthetically meaningful form. Similar to Jungian archetypes, these paradigmatic motifs commutate between our conscious and sub-conscious worlds, and lend both operational and aesthetic value to our societally shared reality. The infinte fence line, illustrated in this image of a Taos Pueblo village wall, constitutes an empirically based reification of one such archetypal motif.

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Village Wall, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)

Watching the Crowd
Oakland Zoo, 08/2018 (11014)

The Oakland Zoo has done a good job of keeping its animals in an environment which is quite natural. The enclosures are large and allow their occupants to feel as close to home as they probably would in a wild state. The young grizzly bear in this photograph apparently had struck up a friendship with a crow that followed him around the enclosure. Every now and then the bear would move from one location to another, and his companion would follow him so that they could both could get a better observation point to watch their watchers.

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Watching the Crowd, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)

A Crow and Dancing Bear
San Francisco, 02/2015 (09608)

After photographing a bear and crow watching the crowd at the Oakland Zoo (see Catg. #11014), I came across this photograph made three years earlier from the rooftop of our apartment in San Francisco. Perched on a fire escape, a lone crow looks up into the clouds of a departing weather system. I would like to think that the crow saw the same bear I did in the stacks of gray and white cumulus rising high above the Bay. I also thought what a wonderful children's story this would make - about a bear and crow who were great friends at the zoo. Unfortunately, the bear was to be sold to another zoo. The crow was saddened to hear he would be losing his friend. But, before he left for his new home, the bear told the crow 'whenever you are sad that I am gone, look up into the clouds and you will see me dancing there.'

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A Crow and Dancing Bear, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)

Road to Pearl Peak
Ruby Mountains, 05/2008 (07354)

Tucked in the northeast corner of Nevada, the Ruby Mountains rise to over 11,000 feet above the surrounding desert. Although a relatively short mountain range slightly less than 90 miles long running from north to south, the Rubies gave settlers braving the California Trail a miniature version of what to expect when they reached the Sierra Nevada and crossed into California. The range is high enough to catch sufficient precipitation to water its conifer forests and alpine lakes. Likewise, the U-shaped Lamoille and Huntington canyons indicate the Rubies sustained significant glaciation during the last great ice age.

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Road to Pearl Peak, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)

Sunlight on Breakers
Ft. Funston Beach, 11/2004 (03612)

Just within the city and county limits of San Francisco, Ft. Funston beach provides a wonderful escape from the vicissitudes of urban life. The beach is quite crowded on weekends but solitude can be found walking along its smooth sands during the middle of the week - especially early in the day. The cliffs toward its northern end bear a white latitudinal scar of calcified ash deposited after the prehistoric volcano, Mt. Tehema, exploded about half-a-million years ago. Tectonic movement of the accretionary portion of the North American plate has now placed the volcanic "hot spot" that produced Mt. Tehema during the Pleistoscene currently under Mt. Lassen.

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Sunlight on Breakers, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)

Transfixed Breaker
Point Lobos, 11/2007 (06716)

In a line paralleling the Salinas Valley and the San Andreas Fault to the east, the Santa Lucia Mountains taper into the Pacific Ocean at Point Lobos near Monterey, CA. The granitic rocks here provide a hauling-out place for sea lions and harbor seals, both of which species will on occasion fill the air with continuous barking. The Spanish explorers, most likely Vizcaino in his 1602 expedition, mistook the bark of the sea lions for that of wolves. For this reason this rocky point was named Punta Lobos Marinos on early maps of the California coast.

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Transfixed Breaker, S C Bachus (Click Image to Pause Display)