I can’t overemphasize the legion of dangers outdoor wilderness photographers face on a daily basis.
For example, the other night after a long day of bone-jarring BLM road driving I was quietly sitting out under a gorgeous star-studded sky enjoying nature’s beauty in the middle of nowhere when disaster struck!
I had my notebook PC, an external 2TB external backup drive and an eSATA high speed card reader up and running when I noted my backup GPS batteries were low. So I plugged in the 15-minute charger into the CRV’s inverter circuit and – POOF! – a fuse blew. The computer still ran but the external drive, high speed reader and recharger all went dead. GASP!!
What’s worse is that flash floods had already thwarted my valiant efforts earlier in the day to photograph the very best-kept, non-secret pictograph site in the Grand Canyon… maybe even the entire southwest!
What wilderness photographers must endure to capture images boggles the mind. With that disaster, I’ll be days trying to catch up again.
Which brings me to today’s alternative to spectacular pictograph images… bees and beeplants. I encountered them back out from the Tuweep area of the North Rim.
I saw a nice growth of purple beeplant off the side of the road and was desperate to photograph something. I didn’t particularly care what. Beeplant were everywhere, made abundant by monsoon rains.
In the western USA you’ll find two common varieties of beeplant… yellow and purple.
The loud hum of bees working the purple plants was deafening. They don’t call those suckers beeplants for nuthin’!
I bravely strapped on the 100mm macro to the 5DII and marched strait into the thicket to get somethin’ for my long day’s journey.
In the old day’s I’d have to get an inch or so away to get a decent macro shot, but now I can be about 6″ away for a full 1:1 macro. Now all I gotta worry about is the bees landing on beeplant blossoms under the armpit. 😉
The good news is they were not all africanized bees like those in southern Arizona… but they can still sting. As I’ve found with africanized bees, they were far to intense on their work to pay attention to me.
It still took 116 frames to get what you see here. 😦
Special thanks to the auto mechanic in Page, Arizona who repaired the burnt out fuse and gave me a spare for FREE. That is how folks in the southwest deserts do things every day!