With 59 human participants and one dog, the 2017 conference in Sierra Vista, Arizona, had the second highest attendance in recent memory, surpassed only by the Ouray, Colorado conference, with 67 attendees, in 2015.
The host hotel had a good meeting room, and despite some problems in a few of the lodging rooms and losing one carload of photographers on the way to the sunrise photo shoot, the conference went smoothly. Numerous photos from the conference appear in the May-June issue of our newsletter, Rocky Mountain Outdoors.
There were ample opportunities to photograph a wide variety of birds, many of which were following the San Pedro River on their annual northbound migration, plus other creatures. We explored the area’s Wild West heritage at a nearby ghost town and took a guided walking tour of notorious Tombstone, “The Town Too Tough To Die.”
Workshops covered topics including the creation of photo essays, bringing stories of the natural world to life, and an introduction to video. There were nine participants in the writers forum – which we believe is a record – plus numerous forum spectators. Several instructive photography programs were presented, along with our usual photo critique, showcase of selected members’ photography, and the aforementioned sunrise photo shoot.