Thirsty Thursday: Wildflower in Big Sur

Rambler: Beth

Drink at Hand: Trader Joe's Pomegranate Limeade 

Looks like we missed Thirsty Thursday last week while we were busy celebrating our anniversary, and I'm squeaking this one out just while it is still Thursday on the west coast! 

I have many photos and a few words to go with my bikepacking overnight in Big Sur a few weeks back. But, I got distracted by a tennis match tonight (happens every year in mid-March), and didn't get all those pixels edited nor any of the words written. Hopefully next week! 

In the mean time, here is an image from that trip. I literally sat my camera attached to the Joby tripod right outside my tent door and snapped this image with my legs still in my sleeping bag. I'm not sure if it was complete laziness or shear genius of campsite selection, but I'll take it! 

Looking forward to another bikepacking trip in Big Sur soon!

Thirsty Thursday: Big Sur Bikepacking

Rambler: Beth

Drink at Hand: Trader Joe's Pomegranate Limeade

Thirsty Thursday here again...time to pour something yummy and make those weekend plans. I just got back from a little overnight solo bikepacking trip to Big Sur. I haven't had much time to go through the images yet from this trip, or from my #desertpixelpedaltrip that just wrapped up, but I pulled these two images from the Big Sur trip as a teaser. I'll write more about and share more photos from this trip very soon!

Here was a camping spot for the night off Plaskett Ridge Road in the Los Padres National Forest. That's Chalk Peak in the background. 

Then I decided to wake up at 3:00 am and capture the stars. 

I'm looking forward to more nights under the stars in Big Sur. Get out there and find your own starry night this weekend!

Thirsty Thursday: On the Coast

Rambler: Terry
Drink in Hand: 2008 Cobblestone Chardonna

So, it's been another long week.  Actually, to be honest, it's been a long couple of weeks.  I don't know what it is lately but it's been rough.  I'm not sure why but it has. I'm sure it's been just me.  I hope everyone else has had a good couple of weeks.  The highlight of last week was our short little trip down the Big Sur coastline. I think we may need to do this more often as neither of us has taken very many photographs this year.  2013 is currently making itself out to be one our thinnest years as far as photography is concerned.  Perhaps that's okay.  Maybe we'll finally be able to sift through our early photography years (a.k.a., 2004-07ish).  

We should probably try and get out a bit least as far as shooting is concerned. There was something about being behind the lens again trying to capture the moment.  Trying to create a feeling.  I'm sure things will pick up as winter turns to spring and we get into the swing of things this year.  Until then though, you may be seeing some old photos of ours for Thirsty Thursdays.  Here's too looking forward to the end of the week and the start of a couple days of break.  Perhaps raise your glass to taking a few more photographs.  Cheers!


Thirsty Thursday: Soberanes Cove

Rambler: BethDrink at Hand: Ancient Peaks Cabernet Sauvignon...pretty good for a cab

Another Thirsty Thursday here again! Time to pour something yummy and make those weekend plans. I was actually all set to write about my love of October and fall colors and whine about how I never make time in October to go photography aspens and other trees. Instead, I found ocean photos, so that's what you get tonight!

Soberanes Cove is one of our favorite places to go shoot along the Big Sur coast. Maybe because its not too far south, or maybe its because we always forget exactly where it is and which turnout off of Highway 1 to use, or maybe its because of the little rock scramble involved to get down to the Bowling Balls...its always an adventure. These images are from a few years back. Yet, my eyes never tire of looking at such beautiful scenery.

crash splash
bowling balls

Soberanes Cove is located in Garrapata State Beach a few miles south of Carmel on Highway 1. Even if you don't find the cove, the scenery around there is spectacular. Get out there and find your own little ocean cove this weekend!

Thirsty Thursday: Pfeiffer

Rambler: Terry Drink in Hand: Hahn Meritage 2010

It's been a long week and it is only Thursday. One more busy day to go. I don't know about you all out there but work has been crazy busy. I get in at about 7AM and it's 100mph until I just give up at the end of the day. I've also seemed to have brought some of the work home this week...crazy. Anyways, the three day weekend is most welcome. Tonight's shots are from last weekend...a weekend we were supposed to go backpacking but couldn't because work got in the instead we just went down south (all the way to Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park) for several hours. The lighting wasn't fantastic and the sunset didn't happen but I think we got a few.

Down the Coast
Just some water
Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park Falls
Old Fashion Pfeiffer
From Hurricane Point
Classic Bixby
Black & White Bixby Bridge

Thirsty Thursday: Sneaking Shots

Rambler: Beth
Drink at Hand: North Coast Brewing Company PranQster Belgian Ale (Belgian because its cyclocross season!)

Welcome to the first Thirsty Thursday of 2012! Time to pour something yummy and make those weekend plans. This past weekend was a busy one for Welliver Photography, shooting a beautiful New Year's Eve wedding in Big Sur on Saturday, dinner with friends on Sunday, and the most ridiculously absurd photo-exploration adventure on that is sure to be a Thirsty Thursday in the coming weeks.

With 1800+ images to go through from the wedding between the two of us, today's post is a quickie break from editing before I get back to my levels and curves. I snuck in a few of "non-wedding" photos during the day on Saturday. Did I mention that the sunset was unbelievable?!

Little Blossoms

No matter what you're up to this weekend, hopefully you can sneak in a capture or two of some beautiful scenery as well!

Thirsty Thursday: Old Coast Road

Rambler: Beth Drink at Hand: Sierra Nevada Torpedo Extra IPA (thanks Devon and Aspen!)

To say I was excited for my training ride yesterday is an understatement. Everything aligned with the prescribed workout and weather and available time to go and the re-opening of Highway 1 after a landslide to go hit the dirt of the Old Coast Road.  I rode part of the Old Coast Road a few years ago, but hadn't been back since. Its a beautiful gravel/fire road that starts right next to the Bixby Bridge north of Big Sur and heads south in the highlands along the coast to Andrew Molera State Park. Gorgeous scenery on a road that makes for perfect Leadville training. The road is a mix of hard packed dirt, gravel, rocks, and deep ruts and is 100% beautiful the entire time.

I quickly found myself fighting a conflict between my two favorite hobbies as I started down the road. The road is fun to ride, and there's something interesting to photography at just about every turn. I am a regular reader of Eric Benjamin's Adventure Money blog, drawing inspiration from his incredible photos during his epic training rides in the beautiful Kansas Flint Hills as he prepares for the Dirty Kanza 200. I wanted to make some similar images, but I had to discipline myself not to stop every 5 feet to snap a frame of something cool with my trusty Canon G10. The G10 doesn't get anything phenomenal like our regular SLRs will capture, but it gets the job done when I'm out riding.

When headed south, the ride starts with a quick and fairly steep drop into a beautiful redwood forest. The road is a fairly gentle climb here, cruising through lush green of redwood forest undergrowth along Bixby Creek. The road is nicely tacky here and I rolled along fairly quickly despite the uphill pitch.

A few miles in the first of the El Sur Ranch "No Trespassing" signs appear, which are a bit of a downer. The middle 6.5 miles of the Old Coast Road pass through the El Sur Ranch, with constant reminders of private property on either side of the road through this otherwise pristine land. The road starts a steady climb up here, out of the redwoods and into the wide open, rolling hills. The sudden transition from dark forest to bright grassland is startling at first, but the warmth of the sun is welcome.

The next section of the road is a little rough. Its a 2-mile descent down a deeply-rutted, curvy road with all sorts of loose gravel and big rocks. The ruts are ideal training for the Leadville Powerline descent, forcing you to look well down the road and watch your speed. While the legs recover on this descent, the arms and brain get a workout! Another short stint through another redwood forest and then a climb through coastal chaparral to the most beautiful views on the ride. Quail run across the road and fly startled out of scrub oak on the side of the road. Poppies dot green pastures all the way down to the Pacific. I could sit here for hours, but I don't think that's what my coach had in mind.

A view of the Point Sur Light Station...and more poppies.

I made a quick stop to take a few photos, but once my heart rate was back down to the 120s, I knew it was time to roll again (damn my quick recovery!). Finally the last of the "no trespassing" sign were behind me and the road got a little more rocky. I was headed down another tricky, rutted hill when I suddenly had a stop sign and Highway 1 in front of me. I thought the Old Coast Road was about 13 miles long, but my GPS said 9.93 mi. Guess I got bad information as there was definitely no more road; just the entrance to Andrew Molera State Park and a bus stop along Highway 1. Time to turn around and head back.

The way back was just as lovely as the way out, and I was feeling great. I felt a huge smile grow across my face so many times as a tootled along at a rather pedestrian pace, enjoying the warm sun and the alternating views of the Pacific on my left with the cone-shaped peaks of the Ventana Wilderness on my right. I even paused to take a quick photo of the road ahead, thinking it looked so nice snaking up the distance hills.

Yeah, that's the same tricky 2 mile descent I previously described. What goes down must go up, eh? I forgot how long that hill was when I started up it--fantastic training for Leadville! The sun suddenly felt hotter, the wind suddenly stronger, the rocks suddenly bigger. I picked my line through the deep ruts, put my head down, found a rhythm. Two miles and 1,010' elevation gain later, I made it to the top. A quick drop back into the redwoods and I was back to a great view of the Bixby Bridge...and sadly, the end of an awesome ride.

If you'd like to explore the Old Coast Road, head south from Carmel on Highway 1. The road is on the east side of Highway 1 at the north end of Bixby Bridge. I think its best sampled on a bike (mountain or cyclocross), but a car with good ground clearance could make it as well. The poppies are just getting to full bloom out there, so go check it out.

And lastly, a little plug for a fellow bike riding photog...if you enjoyed the photos on the Adventure Monkey site linked earlier in the post, check out the photocycling tour he offers in the Kansas Flint Hills. He's still looking for a few more participants for his May workshop and its seriously dirt cheap! Its definitely on my bucket list.