Five day B&W photo challenge

A collection of photos from the five day B&W challenge.

Black and white photography[1]  has always been something I loved.

I am not a professional photographer by any means, but I do love photography to capture certain scenes in the outdoors. I am not a photographer; I am an outdoors person who happens to take a lot of photos! And among these photos are B&W ones.

B&W photography is a good tool to have in a person’s outdoor photography kit.

Certain scenes look more dramatic. Or a certain feeling is evoked. Or certain details are highlighted.

So when my friend and fellow Trail Groove writer Ted Ehrlich asked me to participate in “Five Day B&W Photo Challenge” on Facebook, I was more than happy to contribute.

I tried to pick photos that were different from each other and evoked various themes in the outdoors and were more than landscape photos.

So here are the five I chose.  Hard to and narrow it down, but I liked them all for various reasons.

This sepiatone photo is of one of the Pawnee Buttes in the Pawnee National Grasslands in northeast Colorado. A landmark on the High Plains and really stands out in this otherwise flat area. The plains are often ignored in Colorado, but are worth visiting now and again.

My second photo is from the La Capilla de Todos Los Santos (Chapel off All Saints) in San Luis, CO. On top of the La Mesa de la Piedad y de la Misercordia.  My wife and I stopped in to see this church and the equally impressive Stations of the Cross on our way to Taos for our wedding anniversary
The whole walk among the sculptures and statues is well worth the ~2 hr side trip. 
To quote a much more famous person of Italian descent: “I’m a lapsed Catholic. But I am Roman Catholic — there’s no way out of it”. 
Seeing the simple, but beautiful, Moorish style church in the harsh sun of the noon light evoked certain feelings deep in my cultural and religious roots. 
Catholicism seems to have an odd mix of romanticism, beauty and the mysterious combined with austerity and rigidness. 
In any case, I rather liked how this photo came out as it evokes what my feelings were at the time of the picture-taking.



The third photo seemed apropos for the Arctic chill that visited the Front Range of Colorado.  

The photo was taken at the cusp of treeline near the Continental Divide just below Rogers Pass.

The cold, the wind and the harsh light really seemed to make for scene that evokes WINTER!











For the fourth day, I decided to go with a portrait. I’ve always loved B&W portrait photography. However, the problem portraits taken outdoors is that it is hard to get a photo that does not seem posed. A candid photo is difficult when you are mere feet from each other all day.

This photo of my thru-hiking buddy Garlic was when I said “look up” and caught him not posing. Came out just right to capture the “in between” times often not seen on backpacking trips. No summits, sweeping valleys or vistas. Just someone on a break in the middle of a 100 mile trip.  


For the fifth and final photo, I decided to do a close up.  I personally love how B&W can bring out the details in wood, signs or similar. This photo is from the High and Lonesome Trail in the Indian Peaks Wilderness and is also part of the CDT. The photo has also been used in a few Continental Divide Trail Coalitionfundraisers or brochures.

Pretty happy I can do my small part to “help build a legacy”.


[1] Technically what I am doing is called  monochromatic photography. But, like many technical details, getting pedantic about it does not serve anyone. When people say the “internet is down”, I know they (usually) mean that they are having trouble with website access and not FTP,  email,  Usenet or many other aspects that make up what is part of the current internet. To correct the person makes me sound like a pompous ass esp when I know damn well what they mean. :)  Or, to put it more succinctly, few people state they love old monochromatic movies! 😉

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