Photography in Paradise

peeking from behind the sensor

As soon as I saw the high presser develop to the north I packed my car and cameras and headed to Lone Pine CA. Home to the famous 14K Mount Whitney and it is the highest summit in the contiguous United States with an elevation of 14,505 feet (4,421 m) The recent snow storms left a lot of snow on the Sierras. The lower mountains are called the Alabama Hills where the Hollywood movie industry Has made a lot of movies. Wikipedia lists this: “The Alabama Hills are a popular filming location for television and movie productions, especially Westerns set in an archetypical “rugged” environment. Since the early 1920s, 150 movies and about a dozen television shows have been filmed here, including Tom Mix films, Hopalong Cassidy films, The Gene Autry Show, and The Lone Ranger. Classics such as Gunga Din, Springfield Rifle, The Violent Men (1955 film), Bad Day at Black Rock (1955), the Budd Boetticher/Randolph Scott “Ranown” westerns, part of How the West Was Won, and Joe Kidd.
More recent productions such as Tremors and Joshua Tree, were filmed at “movie ranch” sites known as Movie Flats and Movie Flat Road. In Gladiator, actor Russell Crowe rides a horse in front of the Alabamas, with Mount Whitney in the background, for a scene presumably set in Spain. Star Trek Generations was filmed here in addition to Overton, Nevada and Paramount Studios. This range was one of the filming locations for Disney’s Dinosaur. More recently, many parts of the films Iron Man and Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen were filmed here.”
I have been coming to this area since 1963 when I was first stationed at Edwards AFB in the Mojave Desert. The Alabama Hills are made up of 80 million year old weathered biotite monzogranite and some of the other base rock is 150 million years old. There are still traces of early indian encampments throughout the area.
This time I used my infrared converted Canon 1DsMark2 to make some BxW images. I use the 70-200 zoome lens and the 24mm Tilt shift lens. On the way to the hills I made a quick morning stop at Red Rocks Canyon on Hwy 14 north.