Monday, March 30, 2009

Canoe stuff and photo walk

On Saturday, 03-28-09, I attended the 2009 Far North Symposium held at the Metropolitan State University. This was an all day event. I’ve been to this event in the past.

Prior to listening the speakers I ran across “Cedarboy” for those of you who read We spoke briefly before I ran across Kay Getting. Both Kay and Jim Gallagher were attending. I last saw the both of them when Jim was going to talk about one of the rivers in the Far North that he paddled.

I first met Jim and Kay back in 1980 when I worked with the US Forest Service out of Isabella, Minnesota in the Superior National Forest. Jim and Kay are still with the US Forest Service in the Chippewa National Forest out of Bemidji, Minnesota.

Also, attending were David and Josie Nelson with their new little one.

Afterwards, I headed home and got some paddling in. I went on the Mississippi River and the water level was up a couple feet from earlier in the week. This has been the most water in some years. I paddled upstream for 1:15 then I turned around for a quick 20 minute paddle downstream. I had to stay away from any sweepers to prevent being pushed into them.

Sunday 03-29-08

I headed to the Como Zoo Conservatory to take some macro photos. They allowed tripods from 8 am to 10 am before the general public were allowed in. I got some nice photos that I’ll post later. I stayed an additional one before heading over to the Bell Museum of National History on the U of M Campus. to view Frans Lanting’s Life: A Journey through Time. Here is Frans website:

I joined a meet-up photography club,, in December and today several of us were meeting to walk through Fran Lanting’s exhibit before going on a photo walk. After viewing the exhibit several of us continued on the photo walk through Dinkytown then down to the Mississippi River to the Stone Arch Bridge.

Here are some of the photos I took on the walk. Also, here is a link to some of the other photos taken by our group:

I'll post some macro shots later.

Friday, March 27, 2009


This was my last photography class with Rhea Pappas. Nikki and I were the only ones in this class. Nikki and I went to Rhea's studio on Thursday, 03-26-09 where we went through some lighting techniques. Leah was our model for the evening.

Nikki and Leah

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Wet day on the Mississippi

Today I had to go to the dentist and have my 5 month old crown removed. After doing about an hour and half of full body isometric exercises in the dentist chair I decided to go paddle on the Mississippi River.

It was a gloomy, wet day to be on the river. The water level was about 4 or 5 inches below the high water mark of last year. I’m sure it’s going to go higher. There was more than one place where it felt like I was on a stationary paddle machine. I was doing a lot of strokes but not going anywhere too fast

I couldn’t believe all the branches and tree trunks floating down stream tonight. It was another evening of dodging the debris as I made my way upstream. I forgot to bring my camera to take some photos.

There were two places on the river where the mallards allowed me to paddle right next to them. I don’t recall that ever happening before.

I was out for 2 hours and five minutes. It rained on me for over an hour. The temperature at the start of my paddle was 54 degrees and when I finished it was 47 degrees.

By the time I got back to the landing I could feel my tongue and the right side of my mouth.


Monday, March 23, 2009

Stillwater Minnesota at Night

Here are some photos from last Saturday, 03-21-09.

Nikki, I like the photos that you take of mannequins much better. These are missing their heads!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Mississippi Point Park- Night Photography

The first photo was taken on 03-14-09 and the others were taken the next night, 03-15-09. Nikon D700, ISO 200, f/8, 251 sec., 60mm

Nikon D700, ISO 200, f/8, 30 sec., 48mm

Nikon D700, ISO 200, f/8, 121 sec., 62mm

Nikon D700, ISO 200, f/8, 251 sec., 60mm

Chuck Ryan

More paddling...

Saturday 03-21-09

One of the first things I did today was go to the Health Club. I did one hour on the LifeFitness Cross Trainer before going to the river to paddle.

As I began paddling upstream from the landing I saw a C-2 coming from the Rum River area by the park on the Anoka side of the river. The canoe continued across over to me. It was Al and Jeff DuBois. They said the rest of the group was going to meet up in 45 minutes. We exchanged pleasantries, then they went down stream and I continued up.

Yesterday I decided not to paddle because all of the ice flowing downstream. The water level is on the rise. Today there was ice coming downstream but it wouldn’t be a problem to maneuver around.

The air temperature was a little cool when I got on the water but after paddling a bit it wasn’t bad and it did warm up about 10 degrees.

I paddle up the “horse farm’ and it took me 1:55 to get up there. I paddled away from shore in the faster moving water. On the way back it only took me 45 minutes for a total of a two hour and forty minute paddling day.

Next it was to check out the paved trails on Elm Creek. Last week I cut my bike ride short because there was still too much snow on the trails. Today they were much better. There were a only few spots that still had snow on the them. It shouldn’t be too much longer before it’s all gone. Today’s bike ride lasted one hour and forty-five minutes.

Afterwards I decided to go to the bike shop to buy a new bicycle floor pump. I went to Erik’s Bike Shop in Maple Grove. I saw Bob there and said hi to him. Then it was over to Starbuck’s to pick up three pounds of Guatemala coffee plus a large cup to go.

On my way back home I decided I would get my camera gear and drive over to Stillwater to do some night photography. I used to live in Stillwater years ago and since I haven’t been there in a while I decided to go.

I got to Stillwater around 07:30 pm. I parked down by the St. Croix River. I was surprised that there was still ice on the river. I say I’m surprised because the Mississippi River has been open for some time. While I was taking some photos down by the river two ladies came by with their boyfriend’s and asked me to take a photo of them. They were down from Duluth celebrating one of the girls birthday.

I took a few photos of them even thought I wasn’t prepared to do so. Since I didn’t have my speedlights with me I had to use my on camera flash. Oh, well….

I got back home to Champlin around 11:00 pm.

Sunday 03-22-09

Today, was a windy day. The forecast was saying the wind was supposed to pick up even nmore later in the day. I decide to just head to the river and get my paddle in. I was at the river at 0853 am. The water had risen even more over since yesterday. There was more ice and other debris flowing downstream. I needed to meander a little more today. The temperature was 42 degrees today at the start but with the strong wind it felt much cooler. Today it took me 5 minutes longer to paddle the same distance as yesterday. (2:45). So far I have a total of 10 hours and fifty-five minutes of paddling.

I paddled back up to the “horse farm” and back. I didn’t see anyone else on the river today.

I’ll post some of my night photography shots from last week-end and yesterday later on.