Cooler Days

Well, we have a reprieve from the heat and the air has cleared out a bit in Eagle River Valley but it looks like we are in for more high temps later this week with no rain in the immediate forecast.

These images were taken last week, during the warm spell. I don't recall a time when the heat persisted like it did after the sun dropped behind the mountains. If you look at Eagle Peak in the second photo, you will notice a large patch of snow that broke loose last week as well.

Anyway, I will enjoy the brief respite. Thank you for following along and a reminder that I have a few spots left in my summer photography class here at the Eagle River Nature Center(Alaska) on Sunday, July 21:


Sunset, June 27, 2019

Sunset, June 27, 2019

Eagle Peak

Eagle Peak

Sunset, June 30, 2019

Sunset, June 30, 2019

Lupine Sunset

Last night I decided to take a drive out of Eagle River Valley and check out the lupine blooming along Turnagain Arm as the sun was setting through the haze of wildfires. While the smoke and dry weather is creating interesting sunsets, the air quality is poor and I hope the fires are under control soon.

Thank you for following, now let's get out and start doing some rain dances!





Summer Solstice Sunset

Sunset on the longest day of the year...

Now the pendulum swings back the other way and six months from now we will celebrate the winter solstice and the return of the light. On another note, the forest fire smoke has been creating some interesting light in the evenings, though I am grateful it's cleared out a bit today.

Happy Sunday out there!



Summer Solstice 2019

Happy Summer Solstice! Today marks the longest day in the Northern Hemisphere with the sun setting at 11:43 pm this evening in this part of the world.

This was taken two years ago through a haze of forest fire smoke, similar to what we are seeing now due to the fire on the Kenai Peninsula. The atmospheric particles diffuse the sun and if you look closely, you can see an active sunspot, which is the source of aurora borealis. The sun is "spot-less" right now and even if there were auroras, it doesn't get dark enough at night to see them this time of year. In any case, I hope the fire is extinguished soon.

Have a great weekend and get out & chase the light!



Viñales Sunset

The sun is setting on my time here in Cuba. Four weeks of leading tours, embarking on new adventures and visiting old haunts, making new friends and dealing with occasional adversity goes by pretty fast. I have every intention of returning and already have a number of people ready to sign up for next year’s tours.

This was taken in Viñales last night, where we were treated to a tour of local farms and finished up with a beautiful sky to end the day. Today we returned to Havana and I fly out tomorrow, along with the last of my second group. I’ll have more to share as time allows. Until then, hasta pronto!



Farewell, Washington!

Farewell, Washington! I've had a wonderful time here, both at the yoga retreat in Gig Harbor and also visiting friends while exploring a new part of the world but as always, I look forward to returning home to Alaska. The air has been filled with smoke & haze from wildfires in the Pacific Northwest recently but thankfully the last couple of days have been better and we were treated to a nice sunset & moonrise on Whidbey Island last night. Until next time!




Wildflowers and Closeup Photograph Class

I never claimed to be a serious macro photographer but I truly believe that it takes a true artist to celebrate the ordinary. From time to time, I find myself looking for a new perspective on this mountain valley I call home. With wild roses, bluebells, and geraniums in full bloom, now is a perfect time to find beauty in small places. Speaking of which, I still have a few spaces left in this Saturday's class on closeup photography at the Eagle River Nature Center (Alaska). If you are interested, please click the image below for more details and registration. Cost is $75 and limited to 6 people. We will spend some time outside photographing wildflowers and then go over fundamental Photoshop techniques to get the most out of your images. I ask that participants have a basic understanding of shooting in manual mode and also provide their own laptop with Adobe software installed (i.e., CS or Lightroom).

Thank you and feel free to share!




Trinidad Sunset Time-Lapse

Happy Presidents Day! I’ve been back in the states since Saturday night, still organizing my images as well as my thoughts from the entire Cuba experience. I’ve got more to share yet as I saw so much in just one week, from the culture to the scenery and everything in between. 

I would like to give a big shout-out to KB Cuba for arranging such a grand adventure. Traveling to Cuba and navigating your way around can be complicated, so I am grateful to have had everything arranged and run so smoothly so that I could focus on my tasks at hand – exploring, creating, and sharing my experiences. Please check out their page if you are interested in visiting Cuba or visit their other page, KB Tambo Travel, to see the trips they offer around the world. I am also communicating with them about leading a group of photographers to Cuba next year, so please stay tuned for that! 
Here is a time-lapse video I created of the sunset on the beach near Trinidad last Thursday - 700 still images and 40 minutes condensed into 30 seconds. I will be back with more  soon.



December in Minnesota

I arrived in Minnesota last week where winter is making a late appearance. A few days of low temps (uff-da!) has the lakes creaking and groaning as new ice forms. Meanwhile, the Midwest sunsets never disappoint. It's great to be back in my homeland for a few days to visit family & friends, make lefse with Mom, and explore the land that bore me.




September came on with a vengeance and now it has nearly passed. When the first dustings of snow arrived above 6,000 feet, I assumed it would quickly melt. Instead, it continued to accumulate, hopefully a sign of a snowy winter ahead. Have a great weekend out there, wherever you are!

PS - Don't forget about my signed & numbered bear print promotion. It's not too early to begin holiday shopping:



Iowa Sunset

Back at the airport after a quick weekend getaway to Minnesota and my mom's hometown of Decorah, Iowa to surprise my uncle Harold at his 80th birthday party. Many thanks to my cousin Nikki for taking me out to enjoy the scenery last night and setting us up for this lovely Midwest summer sunset. Let's hope I can get back to Alaska in a reasonable time flying standby.

As always, thank you for following along...


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Summer Sunset, Albert Loop Trail

August is almost upon us. In what seemed like the blink of an eye, wild roses and geraniums have bloomed and faded, leaving the fireweed in all its glory. Salmon will be returning to spawn any day now, followed closely by the brown bears. Summer is short but intense in this part of the world; there is never enough time to capture all of the moments and harvest all of the bounty that is provided, but this is a land of abundance and with each season comes new opportunity to explore and appreciate Alaska for all it has to offer.

Here is a recent sunset from one of my favorite trails here at the Nature Center, the Albert Loop. With the return of the salmon and, consequently, hungry bears, the state park closes this trail annually to minimize human & bear encounters. I’ve been spending a lot of time out here while I still can, listening to the water rush past and absorbing the sounds of solitude.





We've had some unique sunsets recently with the atmospheric haze, creating the giant fireball when the sun is low on the horizon. This was taken two nights ago and if you look closely, you can see the big sunspot AR2665, which is a storm on the surface of the sun. If you are not familiar, this is what causes aurora borealis. According to Spaceweather (, the sunspot currently poses just a 15% chance of major flares. Even if a flare was earth-directed at this point, our skies are still too bright to even see the aurora. Let's hope it comes back around when we start having darker nights again!

In time for Mothers' Day, new images added to my online store...

Well, it seems this pair of swans has left the valley and moved on to their summer nesting grounds. They were here for an entire month this spring, twice as long as the previous two years. I always look forward to their return and the beautiful opportunities they present; this year being no exception.

Just in time for Mothers' Day, I've added some recent photos (both swans and moose) to my online store. These images would look great on metal and they are available on canvas and high-gloss photo paper as well. Feel free to share!



Link to online store...

Eagle Peak Sunsets

We've now passed 13 hours of daylight in south central Alaska. It never ceases to amaze me how quickly the season (and the light) changes this time of year. These photos of Eagle Peak at sunset were taken 3 weeks apart. Soon the north face of the mountain (pictured here) will be completely bathed in light as the sun sets on the northern horizon. For comparison, this side of the mountain doesn't get any direct sun during the late fall and winter months. Have a great weekend everybody, get out and chase the light!


March Sunset

The sun set at 8:23 pm this evening in Eagle River Valley, Alaska. We've recently surpassed 12 hours of total daylight, gaining more than 7 hours since the winter solstice. I wasn't the only one out enjoying the last bit of alpenglow on the mountains, this bull moose was feeding in the creek and already sporting a new set of antlers, a sure sign of spring!

My Side of the Mountain

Until very recently, the sun had not shone on these slopes since sometime in mid-autumn.  Even if the negative temperatures don’t signal change, spring truly is in the air. Since December 21 of last year, the amount of daylight has literally doubled and we are gaining in leaps and bounds from now until summer, when the pendulum of light will begin to swing the other way again.  With the cold, clear skies we’ve had, the evening light on Eagle Peak and surrounding mountains has been pristine.