2018 In Pictures – This past year was a big one for me, travel-wise. So much so that I actually think I burned myself out. I spent the spring camping in Utah nearly every-other weekend before heading to Asia and wandering around Hong Kong, Singapore, and Bali for three weeks. I got back from that and drove out to Wisconsin via the Badlands in South Dakota, camped and backpacked all summer, and then spent a week on Cape Cod. Five days after getting back from that, I drove out to California to backpack the High Sierra Trail and spend some time in Yosemite National Park.
By the time this fall rolled around, when I normally do a long road trip to capture the fall foliage and then spend some time in the desert, I was actually more content sticking around home than I was heading back out on the road – mentally, but financially as well…
So as I’m catching up on 6-months of unedited pictures, here are my favorite 18 from 2018.
1. Dead Horse Point State Park
I started the year off with one of the more unreal sunsets I’ve ever seen in Moab (UT). I had shot Dead Horse Point State Park a couple of times, but my buddy I was with hadn’t so on a whim, we decided to give sunset a go. SO glad we did…
2. Singapore Skyline
I spent my last afternoon in Singapore wandering about 10 km through the Gardens by the Bay and I ended up spending sunset at the Marina Barrage shooting the entire skyline. This was a blend of about 36 images in a pano.
3. Booth Lake, Colorado
It had been about nine years since I had been to Booth Lake outside of Vail so I decided this past summer that if I was going to do one local backpacking trip, Booth would be it. The forecast called for 0% chance of rain so I was pretty pissed when it began pouring on me, but the storms gave way to this beauty.
4. Hong Kong
The weather in Hong Kong was not great over my five days, but on my last afternoon, it actually looked promising to get some great sunset light. After a few hours atop Victoria Peak, the clouds moved right back in at sunset, but at least gave way to some soft-purple tint.
5. Scenic Drive, Arches National Park
I had shot a stunning sunrise in Arches National Park (UT) and as I was driving out and back to the hotel, the light behind the Organ with the road leading right in was the highlight of my morning.
6. Marina Bay, Singapore
Honestly, I kind of loved and hated this afternoon and this shot was both planned and not planned. Assuming it had killer views, I went up to the Marina Bay Sands Skypark, the 57th floor observation deck of the hotel/resort. I got up there to find hundreds of people, blistering afternoon heat with little-to-no shade, and the use of tripods was banned. (Based on the amount of people, that was understandable. But discouraging.)
And the worst part was, they don’t allow you to go from the observation deck to the rooftop bar…
Since I didn’t really have a backup plan, I precariously clamped my camera to the edge of the building – literally perched out 630 feet off the ground – put in my headphones so I didn’t have to listen to the hundreds of people around me and nervously shot through the afternoon, sunset, and nightly water and lights show. Not my favorite afternoon, but it was gorgeous and with how the shot turned out, I’m glad I stuck with it.
7. Hamilton Lake, Sequoia National Park, California
In August, I spent seven days backpacking 72-miles through Sequoia National Park. The 4 a.m. start to climb Kaweah Pass was so worth it…
8. Marina Bay, Singapore
After five days of clouds, rain, smog, and fog in Hong Kong, I was so stoked to finally get some beautiful light on my first morning in Singapore.
9. Four Seasons Resort, Anguilla
10. Munduk, Bali, Indonesia
I stayed in the small village of Gesing outside of Munduk in Central Bali to trek around rice terraces and chase some waterfalls. Gesing featured some gorgeous terraces to just wander around and get lost in. I got some fantastic light on my first night, just steps from my hotel.
11. Moonset over Mt Whitney, CA
Before backacking the High Sierra Trail, I spent a few nights camping at the base of Mt Whitney in the Alabama Hills. Thinking I had another dud of a sunrise with no clouds, I didn’t even get out of my tent. But I guess I didn’t need to either…
12. Four Seasons Hotel, Hong Kong
Front Desk Agent: “I apologize, but your room is not quite ready yet.”
Me: “No problem, I know it’s 7 a.m. I just landed though so I was hoping to at least store my bags if that’s alright?”
Front Desk Agent: “We do have a harbourside room I could upgrade you to, if you would like.”
Yes, I would like very much…
13. Gardens by the Bay, Singapore
After shooting sunset at the Marina Barrage (Above, #2), I raced over to some little pond in the Gardens by the Bay catch the Garden Rhapsody (nightly light show). I love reflections.
14. Route 128, Moab, Utah
I had wanted a shot like this for a while and am still in disbelief of just how incredibly the sky cooperated. Being the offseason though, I had to wait for a loooong time to get the car lights.
15. Montane Mansion, Hong Kong
This shot was completely unoriginal, but I still wanted my own version. I didn’t get exactly what I wanted because it’s difficult to shoot straight up at the sky when it’s raining, but I’m content enough.
16. Jatiluwih Rice Terraces, Bali, Indonesia
I dunno… I just like it. It was a beatiful morning.
17. Sierra Nevada Sunrise
I literally jogged up Mt Whitney to make it for sunrise. #WorthIt
18. Four Seasons Resort, Anguilla
I had carried a DJI Mavic Pro around for a while, but to me, the image quality was always lacking. Luckily they released the Mavic Pro 2 with an image sensor that double the resolution… and luckily it was a few weeks before we went to the Caribbean.