Hiking the Chisos Mountains

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 27.7mm, f/5.6, 1/400 sec, ISO320
“Hiking to Boot Canyon” Big Bend, 2021

After a strenuous hike yesterday, we were looking forward to an easier day on the trail. But first, we had an early morning visit from some deer as we broke down our campsite and had a quick breakfast. Then we hit the trail and hiked to Boot Springs to see if there was any water flowing from the pipe (there wasn’t).

After a short rest at the cabin, we headed up to the North Rim where we enjoyed the awesome views, eventually making our way to the South Rim 3 campsite, where we’d spend the night. SR3 is an excellent site, with a great view of Mule Ears and Santa Elena Canyon in the distance. It was so cool to watch the changing light on the landscape below.

Here are a few snapshots from today’s hike and campsite, a time-lapse I recorded during our dinner, and also the Strava track:

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 55mm, f/5, 1/30 sec, ISO3200
“Morning Visit” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/6.4, 1/200 sec, ISO320
“Fading Light” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/5.6, 1/4000 sec, ISO320
“Sun Through Clouds” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 55mm, f/5.6, 1/1400 sec, ISO320
“Distant Canyon” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/5.6, 1/2700 sec, ISO320
“South Rim View” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/5.6, 1/1600 sec, ISO160
“Clouds Over Mexico” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 55mm, f/4, 1/1700 sec, ISO160
“Prickly Pear Bloom” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/6.4, 1/1250 sec, ISO320
“South Rim View” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/6.4, 1/1250 sec, ISO320
“Shadows Down Below” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/5.6, 1/950 sec, ISO320
“Fire Damage” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/5.6, 1/950 sec, ISO320
“Fire Damage” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 30.2mm, f/6.4, 1/1600 sec, ISO320
“Casa Grande” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/5, 1/30 sec, ISO200
“Morning Sun” Big Bend, 2021

Day One of the Big Bend Backpacking Trip

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/6.4, 1/1600 sec, ISO320
“Big Bend” Texas, 2021

Today two friends and I made the trip from Austin out to Big Bend National Park for a few days of camping and backpacking. The drive out was pretty cool, with lots of interesting clouds to take photos of. And when we arrived at the trailhead, the weather was just about perfect. We still had some cloud cover as we made our way from the Chisos Basin up Pinnacles Trail to today’s destination of TM1 (Toll Mountain) campsite.

While on the trail, we came across three black bears. They were looking for food and didn’t mind us taking photos and watching them for a while. It was our first time to see a bear at Big Bend so we were all stoked!

The top of Pinnacles Trail is pretty tough, especially with heavy backpacks, but we made it to the top successfully. It was at the junction of the TM1 campsite, Pinnacles Trail, and Emory Peak Trail that we saw the evidence of the fires that swept through the Chisos. Lots of trees were blackened and burnt, and the smell of burnt wood lingered in the air. Luckily, the campsite was untouched so we were able to set up our tents, cook dinner, and then fall asleep pretty quickly. We were all worn out from the hike, and also the long day of driving.

Here are a few snapshots and Strava data from today. Enjoy!

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 28.9mm, f/5.6, 1/680 sec, ISO160
“Distant Rain” Marathon, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/6.4, 1/1250 sec, ISO160
“Circular Cloud” Marathon, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 34.3mm, f/5.6, 1/750 sec, ISO160
“Anvil Cloud” Texas, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 34.3mm, f/5.6, 1/340 sec, ISO320
“Mirror Selfie” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 55mm, f/5, 1/240 sec, ISO160
“Bears” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 55mm, f/4, 1/160 sec, ISO160
“Prickly Pear” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/3.2, 1/100 sec, ISO160
“Burnt” Big Bend, 2021
Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 18mm, f/4, 1/30 sec, ISO3200
“Sunset” Big Bend, 2021

Sunset Snap

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 27mm, f/5.6, 1/100 sec, ISO400
“Sunset” Cedar Park, 2021

I’ll be offline for a few days. Will be camping in Big Bend! 😀

Wordless Wednesday

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 27mm, f/4, 1/680 sec, ISO160
“Storm Break” Cedar Park, 2021

❤☁

Evening Ride Around the Neighborhood

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 27mm, f/5, 1/300 sec, ISO320
“Waiting for Mercury and Venus” Cedar Park, 2021

I originally intended to just ride my bicycle down to my sunset spot for a photo and then back home, but it was such a pleasant evening that I rode on past my house and kept going towards the library, and what would have been a 2 km ride turned into an 11 km evening cruise around the neighborhood.

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 27mm, f/3.2, 1/140 sec, ISO320
“Twilight Panorama” Cedar Park, 2021

My first stop was at my go-to sunset location (see top photo), where I chatted with a man who was settled in to try to see the Mercury-Venus Conjunction. The clouds were not cooperating, but at least he got to enjoy the cool evening and brilliant colors of the sunset.

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 27mm, f/2.8, 1/110 sec, ISO320
“Colors over In-N-Out” Cedar Park, 2021

After that I cruised around by our city library area and took a few more sunset photos and then on one bit of trail, I noticed there were fireflies blinking all around. It was so cool! I tried to video the fireflies with my phone, but it really doesn’t capture the magic.

I’m so glad I decided to go for the longer ride this evening. There were lots of neat things to see. ☺