William Dziuk Photography: Blog https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog en-us (C)William T. Dziuk 2010-2023 (William Dziuk Photography) Mon, 16 Mar 2020 06:56:00 GMT Mon, 16 Mar 2020 06:56:00 GMT https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/img/s/v-12/u382158037-o664146231-50.jpg William Dziuk Photography: Blog https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog 80 120 Valley of Fire, Nevada https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/valley-of-fire-nevada I will be posting to this entry soon.  Meanwhile check out the earlier dates travel below.

(William Dziuk Photography) https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/valley-of-fire-nevada Fri, 13 Nov 2015 03:27:54 GMT
Alabama Hills and Hot Brakes https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/alabama-hills-and-hot-brakes November 8, 2015

     Today I woke up a 5:00 am to venture out to Mobius and Lathe Arches of the Alabama Hills to capture the mornings first light touching the high peaks of the Sierras.  As I arrived and was starting to set up the camera, I was greeted with a welcoming “Good morning” from a gentleman with a German accent.  Harold was his name.  It was nice just the two of us there exchanging tripod positions and photographing techniques.  Harold is 70 years old and along with his wife Sarah, they have been traveling and photographing  North America for the past 4 ½ months starting in Alaska and will finish in Mexico.  They had last traveled this area in 2007 and are just amazed with the wonderful scenery in the USA.  It was a great pleasure meeting and spending almost three hours visiting with him and hearing about his explorations and insight of his many years of travel and photography.

     I returned to the RV to get Storm for our day of exploring the interesting rock formations that make up the Alabama Hills are.  As I have said before, I enjoy meeting so many people when I travel.  The next stop was no different as I drove up to some climbers scaling the vertical surface of Shark’s Fin rock.  As I arrived I was greeted by a nice young man from Los Angeles and his rock climbing friends.  As I set up the camera to snap a few shots we started talking and found out he had just did his first climb yesterday.  While we were talking, his girlfriend started her climb and then was followed by her sister.   Once, again I offered to send them a few photos of their climb to the top.

     The rest of the day Storm and I explored the area.  At our final stop we meet a couple and their dog as they were setting up their camp spot for the night in a 4x4 conversion van.  After briefly introducing ourselves, he told me he picked that spot to do his hobby of time lapse photography.  This is another retired couple that sold their home in LA and have been traveling in their van for 7 ½ months exploring the United States.   I enjoy the travel, but it is always better when your spouse is with you.



November 9, 2015

     As I type this entry along the shoulder of Highway 190, I sit and ponder what other obstacles I will encounter on this trip.   The reason I am pulled off on to this narrow shoulder is…brakes on fire.  I have been coming down the grade going into Death Valley and had the truck in 2nd and 3rd gears, but with the steep grade and sharp turns braking is still a necessity.  I could tell things were starting to go south when I the VSC (Vehicle Stability Control) light came on with a solid beep.  I was starting to smell burnt brakes had to apply full power to the fifth wheel brakes to slow my momentum and stop at a safe, not too sloped,  shoulder of the highway.  Getting out I could see smoke from both front wheels and quickly blow out the small fire from the right caliper.  Ah, the joys of traveling.  So, here I wait to let them cool to the touch and attempt to descend the remainder of the way (about 3000 ft elevation drop) to the Death Valley floor to access any further damage.  The cool off time begins…

     After letting the brakes cool and adjusting for more trailer braking I have made it to my resting spot for the night.  I am just outside the border of Valley of Fire State Park in southwest Nevada.  Brakes seem OK, but I will give them a test after unhooking the fifth wheel tomorrow.  Hoping for good lighting and interesting photos of this unique part of Nevada.

(William Dziuk Photography) https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/alabama-hills-and-hot-brakes Fri, 13 Nov 2015 02:33:31 GMT
South to Bishop, California https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/south-to-bishop-california November 6, 2015   Friday

     This morning’s predicament, a shutdown of the furnace some time during the night due to my 3 battery system too low to power the fan any longer.  After two days of 14 degrees at 5:00 AM I decided it was time to head south.  I did make a short detour up to June Lake in time to capture a beautiful sunrise over Sierras.  I arrived in Bishop, CA around 8:00 AM and found the Visitor’s Center next to the park.  Storm has been a good traveler so I took her for a short walk to play.

     Since the center didn’t open until 10:00 I waved down a passing vehicle at the corner to ask about areas that allow dispersed camping.  Just my luck, Joe, works at the Visitor’s Center.  You have to love the friendly people of a small town.   After explaining few areas to check out he opened up the center to grab a few maps and brochures for me.  Turns out his son is an accomplished cinematographer and photographer.  As a former BLM employee he knows the area well and will give you more info than one would expect.  I will definitely be visiting the area and Joe again. I took his advice and drove up the mountain (Fifth wheel not attached) to view Carson Lake and Lake Sabrina and was not disappointed.  Storm and I explored some more at 10,000 ft up into the Buttermilk Boulders area.  Again I had a nice conversation with a fisherman at Carson Lake partially frozen over.


November 7, 2015 Sat.

     With Joe’s suggestion I stayed at PV Pit campground north of Bishop.  For $2 a night for a nice little campground, you can’t beat it.  There were many rock climbers tent camping there, as they were having a get together with many climbers from across the world.  I put the solar panels out early to try to get a better charge on the battery system and power up the computer to process a few images.  I acquired a lot of info from the areas to plan a trip sometime in the future.  Preferably early October and maybe bring my wonderful wife for a vacation. Not as cold overnight, as I migrate south along highway 395. Only 24 degrees in the morning but seemed to warm up quick with the sunny day.  .  Early afternoon arrived at Tuttle Creek campground west of Lone Pine.  I set up the fifth wheel only 20 feet from the creek, which provided a soothing nature sound while capturing the evening sunset shots.

(William Dziuk Photography) https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/south-to-bishop-california Fri, 13 Nov 2015 02:29:46 GMT
The Cold Continues https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/the-cold-continues November 5, 2015

     I arrived in Lee Vining (at the edge of Mono Lake on highway 395) late afternoon yesterday.  After stopping in at the local visitor’s center, I proceeded to find a place to set up camp for the next two nights.  Finding a spot with great views of the Sierra Nevada Mountains proved to very easy just south of the lake.  This morning I woke up to a frozen pipe leading from my water tank so cranked the heat and opened utility panels to heat up the pipes.  I had planned on going to the south beach of Mono Lake to try and capture the mornings glow over the Tufas, but I wanted to get the pipe thawed out so it would not cause any damage.  I opted to snap a few photos of just outside my RV of the sun kissed Sierras.  Soon after sunrise the dense fog and clouds rolled in slowing down the power generation of my solar panels charging my battery system.  Can’t afford cloudy days when the days are short for charging the system. Storm loved the down time opportunity to chase the ball around for an hour.    As noon approached, I finally had thawed pipes and the clouds went away so off to exploring the area with Storm.

     The day cleared up and we were treated to a warm and calm afternoon.   Although the midday sun was lower in the sky there were still some strong shadows making for not the best of photo opportunities.  As the day was shortening, we ventured up the North entrance of the June Lake loop.  I was happy to find some still colorful groves and trees along Rush Creek.  As the light was fading I came across Silver Lake and set up for the sunset shot over the lake.  What I really enjoy about my travels are people you meet.  As I was set up for the coming sunset, I struck up a conversation with a gentleman who was shore fishing with his family.  Jared and his family come up to that particular area several times a year from their home in southern California.  We talked briefly of the journey I was on and he mentioned that they had been wanting to do a family portrait up in that area for a Christmas card.  I offered to give them a nice family memory.  They were fun to photograph and such a great family.

(William Dziuk Photography) https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/the-cold-continues Fri, 13 Nov 2015 02:24:02 GMT
Northern California and Nevada https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/northern-california-and-nevada November 3, 2015

     The days leading up to my departure from my home in Oregon had not only me excited, but my travel partner, as well.  Storm is my 6 year old dog.  As any dog owner knows, they can sense many changes.  She increasingly hung around the front door as to say, “Are we going yet, are we going yet?  Don’t forget me!”  As she watched me cooking soups and smoking various meats and then vacuum seal them for the freezer, she knew I was stocking up for something.  I have found vacuum sealing and freezing individual portions works great for anyone traveling in an RV.  This works especially well when you are like me and will get up at 4:30 or 5:00 AM just to go chase the light for that one photo and return back to the RV after sundown.  Who wants to prepare a supper?  Enter “homemade” precooked and pre-portioned meals (better than any frozen store food).  Packing your RV freezer and fridge with individually sealed items allows for a lot more food that you can stuff in them.

     As I write this entry it is 1:25 AM and I just pulled over in northern California on Hwy 139 for a short nap before continuing my journey.  My plan is to make it to Mono Lake area by Tuesday night, however I will see how many photo ops come my way and how Mother Nature cooperates.  It has been snowing the past couple of days in the elevations that I will be driving through.  Until next time…


November 4, 2015

     I was not going to write about yesterday and today’s exploring until tonight however, a short time into my day’s travel I was greeted by a friendly California patrolman that was advising cautioned travel through the mountain pass just south of Bridgeport.  I was so close to the day’s destination and then denied.  Although, I do have chains for my truck I didn’t bring for the fifth wheel.  He was also there to make sure all trucks and trailers had chains on the tires.  So, my options were to go back into town and look for some at the NAPA store or wait it out like a few of the semis.  I decided to head back to town and find a place to sit and wait.  I though since the pass may be that bad, what was my hurry.  I do have 2 months, right?  Maybe it’s I am getting older and realize life is getting shorter, as well.  In my younger day I would try to pack a lot into one day (especially on road trips, just ask my wife and adult children).

     Yesterday, I enjoyed a leisurely drive to and around Lake Tahoe for the first time. I have decided, in the future, I will have bring my wife on a vacation here.  I say vacation for her since I am always on vacation, according to her.  She may be correct to a point.  Although, any professional or semi-pro photographer knows, it is “hard work”.  Photos don’t just make themselves.  You have to be there and know what you are doing to capture it just right.

     Those sporadic stops along the highway for a photo capture are definitely fewer when traveling with a fifth wheel.  I am constantly eyeing the countryside for that next sellable image, but also find myself looking for areas big enough to pull the big rig off the road safely.  I guess that just makes me be more selective in my shots.  Not a bad thing, I suppose. 


     After the bad weather lifted and the chains no longer needed I ventured to my next stop, Bodie.  Now like most of this exploration trip, I did not know much (if anything) about the road conditions to some of these places.  As I turned off Highway 395 to the Bodie State Historical site, I did not expect a long and winding uphill drive.  Now this isn’t so bad if you are not towing 8200 pounds behind you.  When I finally reached the top of the snow covered drive at an elevation of 8,370 feet I came to the end of pavement.  The sign warned of rough unmaintained road and trailers not advised. I wish I had known that before starting the incline.  Not knowing the conditions ahead and how far more, I turned around and head back down to Mono Lake.  Bodie will now be put in the back pocket for another trip in the future.




(William Dziuk Photography) https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/11/northern-california-and-nevada Wed, 04 Nov 2015 21:19:58 GMT
Let the adventure begin... https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/10/let-the-adventure-begin Welcome to my first blog.  I have decided to start a little documentary of my travels and adventures in my photography career.  This past year I had ventured back to my home state of North Dakota with the RV to pick up my daughter from college and take her on a little summer break exploration.  We traveled through the Black Hills of South Dakota, took in the early season (May) at Glacier National Park in Montana, and headed south down through Idaho on highway 95 to 55 with a stop in Boise to visit a lifelong family friend.  Although several areas of Glacier were still closed, we had a great time.  During that trip I thought it would be nice to document in writing my travels to compliment my photos.  So, as I am on the verge of my last and longest trek of the year, I figured why not start a blog of the adventure.  I also thought it would be a good way for my family, especially my wife, to read what I was doing on a daily or weekly basis.  I may not update everyday, as I am sure many areas I will be boon docking in the fifth wheel will not have cell/internet service.  I upgraded the RV with solar panels, additional battery system, and 2000 watt inverter so photo processing and blog updates can be done while traveling, along with having some other modern conveniences.  A few last minute client portrait jobs to wrap up in the next few days and then let the exploration begin.  More to come next week.

(William Dziuk Photography) https://www.williamdziukphotography.com/blog/2015/10/let-the-adventure-begin Thu, 29 Oct 2015 07:14:26 GMT