Sunday, March 13, 2016

Forest Harvest

And now for something completely different!  Far from the usual type of photo that I take, this was made at the end of my last fat bike ride.  I had just finished loading my bike back onto the truck when I heard a rumble in the distance.  I immediately recognized it as an approaching semi truck.  I do like taking pictures of trucks, so I pulled out my camera and looked for the approaching rig.  When I saw it coming and realized it was a logging truck, I wanted to get a picture of it going past me.  For safety, I stayed where I was standing behind my truck and waited for the logger to pass by.  As the truck went by I snapped this photo of the passing rig with the sun overhead.  I made the image using my Sony RX100 III camera in aperture-priority mode with the aperture set at f/11.  Such a setting on this camera creates a large star-burst effect of the sun.  I thought the resulting photo was pretty interesting, enough to share it here on my blog.  

I realize a lot of people are against logging. I personally am not one of those people, so long as the logging is done in a carefully thought out way.  I think just about everybody (myself included) is against clear-cutting.  Thankfully, the vast majority of (if not all) of the logging done in northeast Minnesota is NOT clear-cutting. Especially in Cook County and Grand Portage, the logging cuts I've been seeing the last couple of years are actually quite nice and the loggers have left nice stands of seed trees remaining.  Not only do such logging practices create good future habitat for wildlife (especially moose, which are struggling in northern Minnesota), but they also make for some pretty darn cool places to photograph the night sky.  In fact, some of my favorite photos of the night sky would not have been possible if it weren't for these logged areas.  Below is one example of a recent northern lights image and a Milky Way image from last summer that were both taken in areas that had been thinned by logging:

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