Some Hiking and Wildflowers

I have been out hiking several times trying to find something to shoot. Below are some photos from a couple of different hikes out at Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge.

I mainly used a macro lens, as there were a lot of interesting looking flowers out, an Irix Dragonfly 150mm f/2.8 manual focus macro lens to be specific. Below is a photo of a sign for one of the trails that I like, though it would look much better in the morning sunlight.

Rimrock Trail at Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge
Rimrock Trail at Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge

This trail runs down by the creek, through the trees, and up the ridge. This was shot at 150mm because I didn’t feel like changing lenses so I had to stand really far back to get the picture.

I took a lot of photos of some purple-pink thistles, but this photo of an unopened bud was the one that I liked the best. With the extremely thin focus depth turning the background grass to a uniform green, the bud really stands out.

Thistle Bud
Thistle Bud

Near the stream, there were these little flowers on some vines. I have no idea what they are but they looked interesting. It was very hard focusing with the wind blowing, but I got a few shots.

Red Wildflowers


And some firewheels, I think, in the last rays of the setting sun. This was not shot with a macro lens as I had switched to 24-120mm f/4 lens to try to get some wider shots.


Below is another case of I don’t know what it is but I like the way it looks.


And just after sunset. This is a merge of three bracket shots that I took hand held. I was trying to get some sky reflected in the creek.

Sunset over the Stream
Sunset over the Stream

Thanks for reading.

30 thoughts on “Some Hiking and Wildflowers

  1. Those stepping stones across the creek are enticing. I still can be tempted to ‘walk’ curbs or railroad tracks, and those stir some of the same urges. I enjoyed seeing the scarlet leatherflower, too. I’ve rarely seen it; I wish I were close enough to go track it down at Balcones.

    Liked by 2 people

        1. Do you mean towards doing a focus stack or just to achieve focus? I did take a lot of pictures hoping that 1 in 10 would be focused where I wanted it with the motion from the breeze. Good thing pictures are cheap these days. I don’t think you could do this with film.

          Liked by 1 person

            1. I was thinking that the flower would be moving around more than one axis in the wind making the alignment a mess. The backgound wouldn’t align, but it would be mostly blurry anyway. But it is worth a shot.

              I have used a cardboard box around the flower to reduce the breeze.

              Liked by 1 person

    1. I had the place all to myself last evening. I expected there to be several people and when I saw the empty parking lot I thought that the place might be closed. But, everyone else had something to do for Friday evening I guess.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I have tried several times to capture a good photo of a trail running off into some trees. I find this to be a difficult thing to photograph well as it is hard to show depth as it is usually dark up under the trees in the distance.


    1. Well, it leads down along the creek for a while, then there is a stepping stone crossing (different than the one I have pictured), then it winds through some trees and emerges into some tall grass. The trail continues through the grass and wildflowers until it climbs the ridge with switch backs. At the top of the ridge it reaches a main loop trail through more tall grass. From this loop you can take additional trails and go down the other side of the ridge and see the old dead tree that I often photograph. Though there is no white cross at the base of the tree.

      I hope this doesn’t spoil your story idea.

      Liked by 1 person

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