Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Running Timpanogos

I stared up at the Timpanogos ridge line not too long ago and realized there is so much of it that I have not explored. I called up a couple friends that I knew would be down to help me remedy my situation. Parker had been up to the summit earlier in the week and Josh had been trapped at home with a heavy homework load, so I figured we would make a good team.

I had been itching to shoot some trail running photos so we met at the trail head fairly early to try for some good light. I had borrowed a lens from Parker that I wasn't used to and messed up a bunch of photos. We made good time and it wasn't long before we were in the alpine. I made them stop periodically and run back and forth until I captured something I was happy with.

These shots are the few that turned out. I shot over 300 photos so I would say it was a bust, but all it takes is one photo to make shooting worth it for me. Not to mention that photography is now pushing me to get out and do something different and new. We hit the ridge after about three hours and started our traverse toward Bomber Peak. After shooting a few photos we hit our turn around time. Josh took off so he could make it to work as Parker and I trotted our way back to the car. All in all it was a fun and successful outing. I hope to get up high again before we get too much snow.

Thursday, September 19, 2013


A breeze came rippling up the river as I cast my line out over the water. The fishing had been poor and the water was really low. A few gusts had rolled through during my short time on the water, but I didn't pay it much mind. I watched as my flies drifted past and gave them a mighty heave ripping them from the surface of the water. I went back letting a little line slip through my fingers before pulling it forward again. As my line reached full backward extension a large gust of wind hit. My arm was already rhythmically thrusting forward at full speed.

The extended line blew up river with the wind and piled into the back of my head with great force. For some reason it felt as if someone had punched me in the head. I had put two flies on my line before entering the river. One to fish the surface and one to drag beneath. I looked down after the impact to see the top fly hanging from what i thought was my glasses. Upon removing my glasses I realized I had snagged something else. I put my hand to my face and came away with little bits of blood on my fingers. I laughed out loud to myself as I cut the line and made my way back to my car to call Neena. It took some figuring out but I eventually removed the fly from my nose. In the future I will probably think twice before fishing in gusting wind.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Scout Falls

Timpanogos waterfalls
My plans to run up to the summit of Timpanogos where thwarted by my inability to pull myself out of bed. I finally forced myself up and out the door only to be met by dark rain clouds. I made the drive up to Timpanookee trail head and started my way slowly upward. 

As my turn around time drew near I hit the Scout Falls turn off. I decided to snap a few photos before going back down the mountain. As I finished up the rain started to come down hard. I threw the camera in a dry bag and started running back down the trail in a down pour. My feet found their way through the slick rocks and over mud puddles back to the car. I tossed my wet camera bag into the passenger seat and headed for home smiling. A morning in the mountains is always the best way to start a day.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Caddis Hatch

Andy Earl Photo
With the light all but gone I continue to throw my caddis imitating fly at the continually surfacing fish. I squint to see it before it is taken by a hungry brown trout. We fight for a moment before I pull him from his aquatic home. It is sad that we have to meet this way, but I admire him. He has outsmarted me many a time and it just so happened that this time I tricked him. I knew what he was hungry for. I carefully remove the hook from his mouth and hold him underwater letting him catch his breath. After a moment of rest he swims away.

This might be my favorite time of year to fish. There isn't anything like throwing a dry fly out on the water and watching a fish splash out of the water with an open mouth to take it. As darkness draws near, at this time of year, there is an amazing bug hatch nearly every night. The Caddisfly spends much of its life underwater. The cooling temperatures of the day usually trigger emergence where they break free of their underwater case and swim to the surface for their short 1-2 week adulthood. The last few time I have been out have been some of the best hatches I have been encountered. There are points in the evening where I am covered in caddis. They land on my glasses, tickle my ears, and get uncomfortably close to my closed mouth. Fishing while covered in bugs... I never thought I would enjoy it so much.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Main Crack

Andy Earl Photo
The flick of my camera shutter on climbing outings is becoming a familiar sound to those whom I choose as climbing partners. A shoot with my friend Greg fell through this past Friday morning, luckily Parker had something in mind that he wanted to climb. We pulled together the plan for an early morning in Rock Canyon.

Shooting for me right now is quickly becoming as important to me as climbing itself. Trying to capture the moment when an individual is pushing themselves to progress speaks to me in a way I hadn't anticipated. 

Parker has been a long time friend who I actually introduced to climbing. He has come a long way since that first day. He isn't sending 5.12's yet, but climbing is a personal journey and he is still fairly new to it. There are so many things you have to learn and overcome as a climber. Sometimes it is easy to look around and see others who are sending hard routes and to start comparing yourself to them. Climbing grades are there to help you push your limits, not to put you above anyone else. 

I am really happy with how these images turned out. Parker's climbing continues to progress and capturing part of his journey into traditional climbing made for a fun morning.
Rock Canyon Andy Earl Photo