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Alaska (Eagle in Flight and Mt. McKinley at sunrise)
Posted By: palmor, 07-07-2007, 10:00 PM

Hey all,

I'm about 2/3's of the way done with my Alaska vacation and it is going great. I picked up a Sigma 17-70 right before I left and I'm SO glad I did. I've used that and my Tokina 400mm 5.6 for 99% of my photo's so far (about 1500).

The other thing that has been invaluable is having 2 camera bodies. I mostly keep the 17-70 on my DS and the 400mm on my K10. Not having to change lenses for the surprise wildlife shot is great. I do use the K10 for more when I'm staying at one location and shooting something specific.

Anyway I thought I'd post a quick couple of photos while I have internet access. I have LightRoom with me but I'm a lot more used to Photoshop so I'm not 100% done with these.

We are in Valdez right now and today we saw about 40 Bald Eagles in a 2 mile stretch along the coast. I got this guy just after he decided to move from the beach to a tree with the dinner he stole from some Gulls.
Tokina 400mm f5.6 SD with Kenko 1.5x TC handheld

We camped at Wonder Lake in Denali for 3 nights hoping to get some clear views of the McKinley and we where lucky enough to have 3 days in a row of clear skies. I took this one at 3:30 am from our tent site (yup, I opened up my tent door to this view!)
Taken with the K10 and Sigma 17-70

I've posted a small amount of photos from the trip on my pbase site if anyone is interested. Comments welcome

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07-18-2007, 10:01 AM   #2
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Hi John,

Nice shot of the eagle, but it's a pity the right wing is clipped. If you had your 400mm on I guess you didn't have the option to include it in the frame. Back in April I watched two brave gulls harassing a bald eagle in flight over Okanagan Lake in British Columbia; now I know why. Image/colours look a little dark on my monitor as does the one of Mt. McKinley, though the colours are warm.

07-18-2007, 08:05 PM   #3
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Mt McKinley at around 21,000ft is one of the peaks on my wish list. I know it would be a difficult climb but I'd love to do it one day. I'll probably start off with Mt Cook first though. I wonder if I took a K10D to the summit would I be the first person there with a DSLR, if not maybe the first Pentax user to reach the top. That's a nice photo of the mountain. The other place I'd like to visit is the Aleutian Islands to photograph the glacier covered volcanoes. I'll be going to Java in Indonesia next year to photograph their volcanoes first. You're very lucky to see Alaska!!

Tim H
07-19-2007, 01:19 PM   #4
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Original Poster
Thanks for the replies all. Both photo's are straight from the camera with just the default lightroom conversion.. now that I'm back (just got back yesterday) I can't wait to spruce them up a bit in photoshop (I'm not all that comfortable in lightroom and can't reproduce my normal PP workflow there).

Overall the trip was amazing, now I just have to go through the ~2000 photos I took and process the best ones. Anyway thanks for looking and commenting, after I do my PP work I'll repost these and see what kind of difference it makes.


Here is another eagle and another shot of the mountain.. hopefully a little bit brighter (no pp yet on these either)

Tokina 400 again

Sigma 17-70
Here is the view from behind our tent

07-19-2007, 02:51 PM   #5
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Stunning additional pictures John, especially that second eagle.

07-19-2007, 08:48 PM   #6
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What a place to camp! Sounds like you were very lucky to get so many clear days around Denali. Beautiful pictures; and I can't wait to see the rest. I hope to get to Alaska sometime. I agree with you about the Sigma 17-70; I got one a couple of months ago and I love it.

07-19-2007, 09:11 PM   #7
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Magnificent shot of the eagle. I really love the additional shot where the clarity of details are brought out very well. It seemed it would take a lot of effort to track it down in the harsh weather over there.

Thanks for sharing
07-20-2007, 06:37 AM   #8
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The second eagle shot is lovely. Great job on the exposure. I hope you re-post it when the PP'ing is done.

There is a dust spot near the bottom you might want to clone out.


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