20140101-IMG_0071Today, New Year’s Day 2014, I broke a tradition.  Well, it really wasn’t a solid tradition since it’s only happened for 2 years in a row, but it could have been.  I slept through sunrise instead of being somewhere to photograph the first light of a New Year.

I have a lot of excuses:  I feel hungover despite not drinking a drop and getting to bed well before midnight…It was snowing this morning so there really wasn’t a sunrise….Most of all, I freely admit I’m not the most enthusiastic cold weather photographer.  Pick one and you’d be correct.  Mostly, though, it was a lack of planning and for that there is no excuse.

New Year’s Day 2012 I was in Moab, Utah with my friend Bret Edge. 20120101-IMG_8214-Edit

It was a good day with a good friend and the weather was nice as it usually is in that part of Utah.

For 2013 I was about 60 miles south of home at Garden of the Gods with my friends Bob Falcone and Todd Caudle.

New Year's Sunrise, Garden of the Gods

New Year’s Sunrise, Garden of the Gods

We shivered a bit waiting for the sun to come up but ultimately it was a grand day to be at the Garden.

This year, though, I didn’t plan anything.  I have to be on a flight to Salt Lake City early on January 2 so it would have to be a location near home and after giving it some thought nothing came immediately to mind so I just didn’t plan anything.  Besides, it was snowing, I didn’t feel well…you pick an excuse.  I did shame myself into heading out for a little while with the new camera and you see one of the results at the top of this blog.

But that’s not why I started this entry.  Mostly I wanted to look ahead to the coming year and speculate what it will bring photographically.  About this time every year I start thinking of photo trips I’d like to take and locations I need to see. I’ve come up with a list of places I am pretty sure I’ll be and some places I would like to be but don’t yet know if it will be possible.

January-The year starts with the RMNP Winter get-together.  This one is already scheduled for January 25 and it’s a chance to see old friends, make new friends, and rub elbows with a bunch of fellow photographers.  I need to pick a print and order a mat and frame for the White Elephant Print exchange.

February-Nothing yet planned.  I do have a business trip to Kennewick, Washington near the end of the month and may take a vacation day or two to see what the Palouse looks like in the winter but nothing is decided yet.

March-Beisboll been berry berry good to me..Spring training gets into full swing in Phoenix and I usually take a long weekend to see a game or two and visit with my daughter and granddaughter who live there.  I’ve been missing those gals a lot so I might take a little more than a long weekend.  Maybe this will be a good time to find some isolated saguaros and practice my night sky photography.  I need to get some better images of Lost Dutchman State Park too.

April-Nothing yet planned though this is about the time the flowers start blooming in Texas.  I had a business trip to Austin a couple years ago and can’t wait to get back.  Maybe this is the time.

May-Hands down the big event for this month is the RMNP Spring Fling in Moab, Utah.  Another chance to catch up with my photographer buddies and create some nice images.  It’s almost always nice weather here and a great long weekend.

June-Heather is bugging me about going to Yellowstone again.  I usually try and go the week before Memorial Day to avoid crowds but this time, if we go, maybe June would be better.  It will be crowded but the Park will be opened for fishing and by that time most of the buffalo, elk, and moose will have dropped their calves so there should be plenty of wolf and grizzly activity.  It will be nice to see if grizzly #399 is still around and also check in on her daughter, #610 down in the Tetons.  This is also a great time to see the Palouse and/or the Columbia Gorge.  Heather has been bugging me to see the Northwest too.

July/August-Nothing planned for these two months.  Maybe if there’s a good wildflower bloom in Colorado……

September/October/November-Lots of possibilities here.  I’ve photographed West Fork of Oak Creek in Arizona a couple of times and it’s one of my favorite places for fall colors.  Maybe this is the year I’ll hit the San Juans in Colorado for changing aspens.  I’ve also heard rumors that a couple of photographers that I really admire might be in Moab sometime in the fall, putting on a slide show at The Edge gallery in Moab.  Gotta keep my schedule open for that!

December-No plans though I’m determined to have the family together for Christmas.  Whether that means we travel to Arizona or fly the girls up to Denver, or we all go to South Dakota is not settled and won’t be until that time arrives.  We WILL have the family together though.

That’s a snapshot of my year.  Keep in mind that none of this is etched in stone.  Some things are pretty definite and some are purely “I want to…” and there’s always the variable of my business travel schedule.  Whatever happens, 2014 looks to be a pretty promising year.  I hope yours is too.