Austin GPS Photo Safari

closeup of gear wheels on an oil rig

A couple of weekends ago, Eric and I went to Austin to join up with the photo club there for a “GPS Photo Safari”.  I was really looking forward to going because it would be my first time out with my new camera.  Plus, as you saw in my last post, we’d pretty much been homebound for a week.  Of course any post where I’m sharing photos of one of my adventures always seems to make me second guess myself.  A while back someone commented that they hate blogs that have dozens and dozens of photos.  And that people need to be considerate of their readers and not post so many photos.  So, I always think about that when I’m posting (because I love photos, obvs, and want to share as many as possible).  As I was putting this post together tonight, the same thing popped into my head and I wondered if I should limit my photos per post to 5 or less?  But, then I said to myself “WTF? People need to a) get over it b) invest in some higher speed internet c) go elsewhere if they don’t want to see photos”.  So, allow me to overload you and your bandwidth with my photos from Austin.

Back to what I was saying…we went on a GPS Photo Safari.  We met up for lunch with the Austin group and were given a sheet with clues and GPS coordinates (ie latitude and longitude).  We plugged in the information for our first location and off we went to Santa Rita #1.  This is the first oil rig in Texas and it began drilling in 1921.

closeup of metal post painted burnt orange with barbed wire wrapped around it

I actually wasn’t thrilled with the majority of my photos at this first location.  I was using my trusty 50mm lens, but I wanted to be able to get in closer.  Eric actually switched lenses with me at one point, but I was still having issues.  I was happy though, that I was shooting in AV mode, rather than in the normal CA mode I’m usually in.  Little by little I’m going manual.

Our next clue led us to the Littlefield Fountain at the UT campus.  I changed lenses at this location and went to the 18-250mm.  I was much happier using that lens.  It enabled me to get really wide shots (much wider than you see here), but then also closer shots…so a much wider range.

Littlefield Fountain with a winged victory on a chariot pulled by horses

I loved this area with the fountain and the surrounding buildings.  It reminded me of the fountains in Rome.  I took about a billion shots of the fountain, but then I also tried to focus on some other things too.

stone railing from an angle with the sun coming between the columns

This was one of my favorite photos of the day… “O Fortuna” with the capital in the background.  Of course, this had me singing Carmina Burana the rest of the afternoon, but whatever.

the words O Fortuna engraved into the stone railing and the capital building in the background

Can you believe the blue sky?  Even now I’m amazed at how blue that sky was.

back of the winged victory with a church steeple in the background

And then we were off to our next location, the Capital.  On our way from the car I spied this sculpture, and I liked the shot with the capital in the distance.

bronze statue of a vietnam soldier with a rifle on his back from behind

I had a lot of fun playing with my point of focus too.

closeup of the black iron gate with a gold star finial and the capital building in the background

I think Eric is rubbing off on me.  He’s always climbing around to get his shot, and for this one I actually laid down on the walkway to get the perspective I wanted.  Who am I?

view from the ground of the capital building

Being at the Capital brought back some memories.  When I was a senior in high school, my drillteam won Best in Texas and we got to perform in the rotunda of the capital.  We did a high kick routine (always impressive).  The day was kind of a blur, but it sticks out in my mind.

And then we moved along to our next to final location – one of the Moonlight Towers.  These are lighting structures, used to illuminate the city at night.  According to Wikipedia, Austin is the only city in the world known to still operate one of these lighting systems.

Moonlight tower from below

Again with that crazy blue sky.  I love how abstract this looks.

closeup of wheel and pully on the Moonlight Tower

Last location – we headed to Mt. Bonnell, the highest point within the Austin City limits.

hawk in flight against a blue sky

It was a crazy hike up about 8,000 stairs to the top (reminded me a bit of Rome too).  But the view was great.  This is looking back at the skyline.

Austin skyline

It was a gorgeous day, and so nice to be out and about after all the ice and snow.  I really had a ton of fun on the Photo Safari and I can’t wait to get out and take more photos soon!

view of a river

But, since I’m going for broke with the photo overload today, and since I can’t be satisfied with just one camera…I thought I’d share the couple of photos I took with my phone via the Instagram app.

This one was on the road out of Dallas, see…snow everywhere.

snowy landscape

This one was taken at our meeting location – Players.  I liked the carving on the tables.

graffiti carved into the wooden table

And finally, the Capital.  I love how this one turned out.

capital building

Ok, that’s plenty for today.  I hope you enjoyed my little historical trip around Austin!

2 thoughts on “Austin GPS Photo Safari”

  1. Wonderful wonderful photos, Michelle! LOVE that blue sky! Gorgeous shots in and around Austin. Thanks for sharing and you could have posted even MORE and I would have loved it! ;o)

  2. Your “weird sister” here. Love the photos, especially the last one of the capital. Reminds me of some of those old souvenir postcards from the 1950’s. Those photo walk things sound like such fun! Sort of a scavenger hunt, yes? I am very impressed.

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