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Category Archives: 12 Weeks in the Biggest Little City in the World
After my summer in Reno I finally got around to updating my portfolio. Here are a few of my favorite images.
Little Leaguers wait for the Aces starting players to come out of the dugout at Aces Ballpark in Reno, Nev., Friday, June 1, 2012.
Larry Gunter, of Havik Skwod, hugs one of his coaches before his fight against Isaiah Wright, of Sektion 8 Fight Team, during Ultimate Reno Combat 34 at the Grand Sierra Resort Friday, June 30, 2012. Wright won the fight with a knockout.
Jason Miller, of Lance Creek, Wyo., wrestles a steer to the ground in 11.5 seconds during the steer wrestling section of the Reno Rodeo at the Reno Rodeo Arena Sunday, June 17, 2012.
Reno fire fighters exchange water during a fire in Sun Valley on Chocolate Drive that destroyed two mobile homes Sunday, June 17, 2012.
Out of all the sports I’ve covered this year cycling has proved to be the most challenging. Not because I couldn’t get enough photos, but because I wanted to get something different. I covered The Mighty, Mighty, Tour de Nez on Sunday, July 29, in downtown Reno. I wasn’t able to get any of the quirky races that happened earlier in the day because I was on another assignment, but I got downtown with enough time to cover the masters and pro races.
The challenge for me was to get something other than the riders coming at me or the go-to pan shot. After a few hours and a couple of races I was pretty happy with my results. Unlike some of the other sports I’ve covered I think I can find some cycling events around Charleston.
I was able to spend the day at Granlibakken’s Treetop Adventure Course a few weeks ago. This was the first time this summer that I had the chance to shoot and edit some video. I was also able to play around with the newspapers Go Pro for the first time. All of the 1st person shots are done with the go pro. I would have liked to attach it to my helmet but I didn’t have the right gear, so it’s attached to my chest.
On Friday, July 27, the body of Jonathan Blunk, a victim of the Aurora, Colo., movie theater shooting was brought back to Reno. This was the first time I covered anything so closely related to a national story and the first time I covered an event where I encountered so much grieving.
I was told that the Patriot Guard would be escorting the body back to the Mountain View Mortuary along with family, and my plan was to photograph the motorcade as they traveled through one of downtown Reno’s largest parks. After I got my photos there I planned to meet up with them again at the mortuary to get more photos. As with most of my planning it didn’t go as smoothly as I hoped.
Even with all the mishaps I was able to get the photos I needed, and it was definitely a learning experience for situations like this.
Here is an assignment I shot a few weeks ago. It was a Burning Man fundraiser/party called Unity II in Reno. It was held at the Salvagery Reno and raised money for two Burning Man art projects, Pier 2 and Burn Wall Street, and the art gallery at the Salvagery Reno. The party started open to all ages with bands, an open gallery, and a dunk tank. Later it moved inside the Salvagery with dancing and shows on the second floor.
President Barack Obama came into town yesterday to speak at the VFW National Convention, and after a long week of covering celebrity golf it gave me a chance to photograph my first president. My assignment was to cover him arriving at the Reno-Tahoe International Airport and leaving after his speech. I was excited to say the least.
It went much better than I expected and I even came away with a few decent photos of him meeting with a small crowd after getting off Air Force One.
If you want an amazing view Lake Tahoe and the surrounding area then the summit of Mt. Tallac is the place to be. Monday, July 10, after a week off from hiking I decided to tackle this hike. From Reno it takes about an hour and half to get to the trailhead, which is southwest of the lake. The easiest way to get there is by taking 395 south through Carson City, get onto 50 from there, and finally take highway 89. You won’t be on 89 very long when you start seeing signs for Mt. Tallac. Make a left at Mt. Tallac Road and continue to follow the signs until you reach the trailhead.
If you are just going on a day hike you can pick up your permit and self register at the trailhead. If you are backpacking you have to go to the Lake Tahoe Visitor Center.
I suggest getting an early start on this hike. I got to trailhead at 9 a.m. and the lot was packed already. Plus, this can be a pretty strenuous hike with little shade for the last half, so you don’t want to get caught in the most difficult section during the hottest part of the day. You definitely need a hat, sunscreen and plenty of water for this one.
The trail starts off with a steady incline as it brings you up through a forested area where you will get a pretty nice view of Fallen Leaf Lake. After you pass the lake you dip back down into the trees where you will come across two smaller bodies of water.
This is the first small lake and the second marks your exit from the trees and opens the trail up to side of the mountain pretty hard.
It starts out easy enough as you make your way through slightly rocky terrain, but the rocks form nice steps on your way up.
As you make your way out of this section you come across a large open expanse of land. The photo below shows this, but it’s on the return trip so it’s from above.
After you make it past this section of the trail you begin a steep climb up the side of the mountain. Here you have two options of varying difficulty. The first is a pretty simple continuation of the trail except that you need to pay attention because it will veer to the left. You don’t want to miss it like I did. If you do miss it, or are a little more adventurous, you can take the other path. Below is a photo of what you will be scrambling over on that section of the trail. There is a visible trail as you move up the mountain so it isn’t to hard to follow, but it involves climbing on a lot of loose rocks. I took the easier way down on my way back.
Once you reconnect with the main trail you will continue through another flat area that leads to the final switchbacks before the summit.
As you make your way up to the summit the switchback will end and you are pretty much free to find your own path to the very top.
As you can see this isn’t the soft, relaxing, lazy afternoon summit like Mt. Lola. As I made my way up I half expected the Eye of Sauron to appear at the peak. The tough hike to the summit was worth it for the views though.
And you can’t forget Lake Tahoe and Fallen Leaf Lake. To get a larger image of the panorama click the photo.
I’ll have some time to decide where I head next, but I won’t be able to go hiking for at least the next week because of my work schedule. I’m going to have to find something grand an epic for my last few hikes.
This summer has been filled with a lot of firsts but some of the more interesting ones have been the new sports that I’ve been to cover. Saturday, July, 7, went about 23 miles east of Reno to the Tahoe-Reno Motorplex to shoot the Eldorado Fireworks 500. It was the first year for the race and was also on a brand new course. The spectator area was located on a hill looking down on a large section of the course. Luckily this was the case because I was stuck in spectator area for this event.
There was a media safety meeting the night before I didn’t know about so I wasn’t able to get a vest to go down onto the course. I tried to convince them to give me a spot on the helicopter that was following racers through the course, but it wasn’t a big surprise that they weren’t going for that idea.
I also got the chance to shoot some freestyle Motocross before I left for another assignment. Here are a few of my favorite photos from the race.
I headed out into the desert for the first time July, 4, 2012 for Fourth of Juplaya. Camping groups, many of which descend on Burning Man in September, found their way out onto the Black Rock Desert’s playa for the fourth. I didn’t really know what to expect when I got off the paved road and headed into the playa, but I was pleasantly surprised. It was noon so the sun was high and hot, but with the breeze the heat wasn’t unbearable.
No one we met out on the playa was hesitant to have their photo taken, which was one of the worries that I had.
From there we left for another camp not to far away. Where I was able to get some photos of fire spinners practicing during the day. We were directed to a camp that we could hardly make out in the distance.
This camp was called Horizon Wind Oasis and was run by the Department of Tethered Aviation. We were given a tour of the camp which included a shower, kitchen area, living space, and a public sitting area. The amount of work it took to build this camp basically from scratch was impressive.
I was able to try my hand at shooting Mixed Martial Arts on Friday, June 29, 2012. Ultimate Reno Combat 34 was held at the Grand Sierra Resort only two minutes away from the RGJ. I was pretty happy with what I got from the fights, and as a fan, it was great to see the fights live.
With any sport I shoot after the first time I always come away seeing something I could have done better, and I’m hoping I’ll be able to shoot their next event on July 20. Working at a venue like this you are at the mercy of the lights, and from what I was told the lighting at this one was some of the hardest to shoot in. While not perfect I can’t seem to find anything worse than the Lantz Field house at EIU.
Here are some of my favorite shots from the night.
Now onto the main event.
This is probably my favorite sports reaction photos I’ve taken so far.
As I was editing these I thought to myself I haven’t done a black and white photo since I shot for The Daily Eastern News, so here you go.
If you want to see more click here for my gallery at the Reno Gazette-Journal.