Must be spring

The sandhill crane migration through central Nebraska is building in numbers, both cranes and watchers.  I’ve met at least three couples already who told me this trip has been on their to-do list for years and now is the time they are doing it.  Amazing how a bunch of big, noisy birds just passing through town can attract so much attention and bring people together.

This is my third or fourth time to wander around the central Platte River looking for a good photography vantage point or simply stand on the bank and listen to the raucous in the evening.  This year there is a fierce north wind blowing across the prairie, making sitting out in the bushes before dawn long enough to actually see cranes a serious personal challenge.  This morning (got up to 30F) in my mind it was “just 5 more minutes then I’m out of here” as I watched groups of cranes fly over and by my stand.  Never got a close shot but didn’t lose any extremities to frostbite either.

I think those award-winning shots from Michael Forsberg require significantly more planning and equipment than I have.  Next year if I want to try this I’ll connect with a photo tour guide who lines everything up to get out in the fields in blinds up close and personal.

Sun finally came out today so the sunset was nice.

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3 thoughts on “Must be spring

  1. Our trouble is we know what we want to achieve photographically but as yet we don’t have the full ability to do it. Enjoy the journey to success as each learning point is a milestone on the way, and each picture you take is better than the last.
    And because you work so hard at it you have already elevated yourself above the millions who can do auto or point and shoot, or who lie snuggled up in bed for the freezing dawn.
    I love the colours in this shot, I’d be inclined to crop out the land and just leave it as sky.

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  2. Hey Mel, like Kate, I also find that your determination to be up and out at the crack of dawn in freezing weather merits a lot of respect. Love the colors of the sunrise and the depth the cranes provide in this shot. It really allows me to feel like I was there without the chills, such a bonus!

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  3. Thanks to both for your comments. I’m afraid I left the impression it was a rotten time but overall I had a blast just being around the cranes and playing with the long lens. I got the name of the park director who can set me up in a blind next year. Might still be freezing but at least the odds for closer images is better!

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