Rocky Mountain Dreamin’

By Jack Olson

Moraine Park
The Big Thompson River flows through Moraine Park.
© Jack Olson

I sure hope you’re planning to attend the RMOWP conference in Rocky Mountain National Park in September. It’s stunning, inspiring, magical. That’s just a few adjectives. Supply your own when you come. I taught up there for about a dozen years at the RMOWP photo workshop and I figure I’ve been in the park two hundred or more times.

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Near Misses

By Peter Kummerfeldt

There have been times in my life, and I suspect in yours, that something has happened where your life was placed in danger but you managed to avoid a catastrophe by sheer luck. These are the “near misses” in our lives that we all experience from time to time. I suspect that for every accident that happens there are probably dozens, if not hundreds, maybe thousands, of “near misses.” Situations that we seldom hear about, but situations that we could learn from if we were made aware of the details.

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RMOWP 46th Annual Conference is Calling…

Morning in the Park © T. Guthrie
“Morning in the park” © Terry Guthrie – 1st Place Image from last Conf., Photo Contest 2009

Where:  Estes Park, Colorado (elevation about 7,500 feet)
When:  Monday through Thursday, September 9-12
Why:   Rocky Mountain National Park
Headquarters:800 Moraine Avenue Event Center at Trout Haven Resorts, just outside the Beaver Meadows entrance to the park

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Member News

RMOWP welcomes new member Randy Watkinsof Cushing, Oklahoma. A photographer, lecturer, and artist, Randy is a native Oklahoman, having been born in Stillwater, according to his website. 
About himself, Randy writes, “Something in my being finds Oklahoma nature and its myriad forms and textures absolutely enthralling. Oklahoma’s land, water, the astonishing variety of cloud shapes and the play of light on them all, in these I sense a peculiar and profound beauty… This is my art, this is my land and people. I wish to share it with you.” 
To see some of Randy’s photography visit his website, www.randywatkinsphotography.com.

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Ron Belak Publishes Book

Ron Belak, RMOWP member from Evergreen, Colorado, has announced the recent publication of his book, Fly Fishing Colorado’s Backcountry.

The book is a collection of articles that originally appeared in Colorado Outdoorsmagazine, the official publication of Colorado Parks and Wildlife, and Ron tells us that all the essays in this how-to book were updated in 2018. Although aimed primarily at backcountry anglers in Colorado, he says that over half the essays are relevant to fly fishing for trout anywhere. 

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Factoring in the Impact of Altitude for Coming to Estes Park

By Peter Kummerfeldt

A number of you have expressed concerns regarding the impact of the altitude when you travel to Estes Park later this year. The town sits at 7500 feet above sea level and should you wish to explore Rocky Mountain National Park you could find yourself on Trail Ridge Road crossing the Rocky Mountain divide at over 12,000 feet. The air gets a lot “thinner” up there! Not to worry – you can still attend the conference and have an enjoyable time if you attend to a couple of suggestions from those of us that live here.

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Beyond the High Meadows

Text & photos by Richard Holmes

I felt it coming on the evening before, an unexplained restlessness. A familiar stirring. I realized then what it was. I needed an altitude fix––by hiking. I had to climb something.

So I set off this morning for the mountains and the trail to King Lake, my first sustained hike of the season. The air is clear, the sky is blue, but my mind is cloudy, perhaps from too much lower altitude inactivity. Within the first mile I begin to feel resuscitated, the clarity of my mind approaching that of the sky. A beautiful day. But aren’t they all beautiful at the higher altitudes?

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Holy Grail in the High Desert

by Ian King

You’re headed due north on the high desert floor, flat as a pancake, the endless sagebrush passing by as if part of the background scenery in an endlessly looping cartoon strip. It’s not just “desert dry” here in the high mountains; there’s been a severe drought out this way recently, adding insult to injury, or for some species, for some flora, it’s led to a new opportunity amongst the survival of the fittest, as the least well-adapted drop by the wayside, fodder for nature’s Grim Reaper. It looks very much like death stalks the land, but there’s life—stubborn, defiant life, no matter how dormant or slow-moving or desiccated it may appear to the untutored eye. New life, new growth, awaits hidden behind scaly bark or buried in the sand deep enough to find succor in the surprising dampness the water table, seeping close to the surface, still providentially offers up.

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Timing

Text & photos by John Hanou

There are innumerable ways to time a photo. 

Moonset © John Hanou
Moonrise, Farmington, NM © John Hanou

Many photographers want to capture the “The Decisive Moment,” coined by Henri Cartier-Bresson nearly a hundred years ago. While this is great, I’ve taken it in a slower way.

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Ford Wins Cash Award

Watering Hole © Ford
The Watering Hole © Laurie Ford

RMOWP member Laurie Ford, from Glenwood, New Mexico, was awarded Best of Show in the Grant County Art Guild’s 33rd annual purchase prize contest. The contest, with the theme “The Enduring West,” was open to all New Mexico artists, and the 44 entries included a variety of mediums ranging from oil paintings and acrylics to watercolors and drawings.

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