Photo Journal & Trip Reports (May)

Please enjoy these photo journals and trip reports from some of my outdoor photography adventures, starting with the most recent. You can subscribe to follow my latest blog posts (and any other blogs as well) by using a feed reader such as Inoreader, Feedly, or a Mac app like NetNewsWire.

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Sunrise on Wilson Peak
May 2023  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

In late May during this spring of unusually stormy weather here in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado, I finally had a clear weather window to go for a more ambitious high-altitude photo mission. I've had a particular photo idea of Wilson Peak in mind for several years and now would be a good time to go for that!

Some Early Season Backpacking in Colorado
May 2023  |  Colorado

The weather this spring has been quite wet in the mountains of southwest Colorado with frequent rain and thunderstorms, almost like an early monsoon pattern. The unsettled weather has dissuaded me from attempting any high camps in the snow so far, but with a hankering for some backpacking I have been seeking out some lower elevation destinations this May for some quick backpack outings...

Sliding into Spring
April/May 2023  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

I'm a month late with this post, but I thought I'd share some snapshots from a few spring skiing days in late April/early May here in the San Juan Mountains of southwest Colorado. I didn't get out as much as I expected this spring, due in large part to unusually thunderstormy weather in May but also just generally being too busy on the computer (something I'm trying consciously to change in my life)...

Sandstone & Ponderosas
May 2022  |  Bears Ears National Monument, Utah

In mid-May we drove west to Bears Ears National Monument in southern Utah for a quick 3-day backpack trip into a unique canyon full of giant ponderosa pines amongst giant sandstone spires. A spring-fed creek provided a pleasant base camp location to relax and spend a day exploring some fascinating and seldom-visited ancient cliff dwellings...

Springtime in the San Juans
May/June 2021  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

Spring is quite possibly the most beautiful time of year around the lower elevations of the San Juan Mountains in Colorado, with snow capped peaks rising above brilliant green aspens and wildflower-filled meadows...

Spring in the San Juans
May 2020  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

May is always a glorious month in the mountains of Colorado, when the freshly budded aspen forests have a brilliant green glow and snow has mostly melted off the trails but still lingers in the high peaks...

San Sophia High Camp
May 2020  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

It's pretty rare to be able to camp up high in Colorado. In the summer the threat of thunderstorms above treeline is too terrifying, and in the winter it's just too damn cold. But in mid-May I had a perfect window of opportunity to hike up and camp at 13,200 feet up on a high ridgeline here in the Sneffels Range of the San Juan Mountains in Colorado...

Rock, Rust, and Lichen
May 2020  |  Ouray, Colorado

Rock textures photographed while hiking in the mountains around Ouray, Colorado.

Spring Skiing in the San Juans
April-June 2019  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

If you've followed my blog for a while, you may wonder if I've given up on snowboarding since I haven't posted hardly any ski/snowboard photos this winter. Well, while I haven't been posting much, I have been out on the snow a lot this season, especially this spring!

2018-2019 was a winter to remember in Colorado, with roughly 160% of average snowpack by late winter...

Rainy Day Hike in the Needles District
May 2019  |  Canyonlands National Park, Utah

In mid May we met up with family from Germany in the Needles District of Canyonlands National Park in Utah for a couple days of camping and hiking. Our timing wasn't great, as it rained more than I've ever seen in the desert! But we did get one somewhat dry-enough day for my brother-in-law and I to do the ultra-classic hike to Chesler Park and Druid Arch...

A Snowy Sunrise in the San Juans
May 2019  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

The exceptionally snowy winter in the San Juans keeps on going into May and our snowpack is currently 187% of average for this time of year! As I've been out splitboarding lately, I've been admiring all the peaks draped in thick snowpack, and thinking about how they'd look with colorful sunrise light...

Hiking from Ouray to Telluride the Long Way
May 2018  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

The towns of Ouray and Telluride in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado are only 10 miles apart as the crow flies, but are separated by the rugged Sneffels Range. In the summertime it's possible to hike, run, bike, or even drive 17 miles over 13,114 ft...

Backpacking in Grand Gulch
May 2017  |  Cedar Mesa, Utah

At the end of May we spent three days hiking through the upper portion of Grand Gulch, in Cedar Mesa, Utah. This was the third time I’ve backpacked in Grand Gulch, but the first since the area was designated as part of Bears Ears National Monument by President Obama in 2016...

Supermoon on Sneffels
May 2012  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

I’ve been itching for an adventure lately, so early this morning I hiked up Mt. Sneffels in the moonlight again! I left Ouray at 1:30am (ouch!) and started hiking into Yankee Boy Basin at 2:30am. The “supermoon” – aka, the full moon at its closest orbit to Earth – was incredibly bright, and I had no troubles finding my way without headlamp...

Epic Spring Ski Season in Western Colorado
May/June 2011  |  Colorado

With record-breaking snowfalls in April, continuing well in May, the spring ski season in the San Juans was a memorable one. May surprised us with several long snow storms that brought mid-winter-esque powder days and smiles all around! Here is a collection of my favorite ski photos from May and June...

Riding Volcanos in Washington
May 2010  |  Washington

In May my friend Scott and I did a road trip out to Washington to ski/snowboard some volcanos. We ended up scoring two phenomenal descents down Mount Saint Helens and Mount Adams.


Mount Saint Helens in a Cloud Sandwich

Mt...

Spring Snowboarding Descents in the Tetons
May 2009  |  Tetons, Wyoming

This May 2009, I headed up to Jackson, Wyoming to snowboard some big spring lines in the Tetons with a buddy of mine who lives up there. My timing could not have been better, with solid snow conditions from top to bottom of the peaks, and perfect sunny spring weather...

Spring Riding in the San Juans
April/May 2007  |  San Juan Mountains, Colorado

Instead of making separate trip reports for each spring backcountry hike and ski/snowboard trip that my friends and I do, I thought I'd just make a page with some of my favorite pictures from various hikes this spring in the San Juan Mountains of Colorado...

Turkey
May 2004  |  Turkey

In 2004 my sister invited me to join her and some friends for three weeks of traveling through Turkey. This isn't  my normal type of travel destination so I was eager for the opportunity to travel there with them and experience the rich history and culture...