Solitary | Paso Robles, California
This is an image right at a decade in the making. Let me explain :-).
I first visited California with my friend, soon to be girlfriend and now wife, Kristin back around 2005. Her Dad thought it'd be funny to throw a cherry bomb in my truck as a prank and it ended up burning a hole through my driver side seat as well as staining the chair red, so instead of replacing the seat he brought me along to California to visit their family in San Luis Obispo, hehe.
As soon as I got to SLO, I fell in love. Both with the landscape and Kristin :-). I didn't know it at the time, but that trip basically kicked off our entire relationship. Her Aunt and Uncle lived in a house off Jack Creek Road and Vineyard Drive in Paso Robles and there was this lone tree on the top a hill there that caught my attention immediately.
I wanted a good shot of that tree so badly but I could never get one I was happy with. I tried every time I went out there afterwards, which has been at least once or twice a year ever since.
Well, a year or so ago I saw a shot from +Mark Gvazdinskas
of a very similar looking tree, on a hill, in Paso Robles, with the Milky Way on fire behind it. Right when I saw that shot, I knew I'd have to give it a go one day if I ever got back to that tree. Kristin's Aunt and Uncle ended up selling that house a few years ago, so I hadn't been back that area in a while.
Yesterday, I finally made it over to the +Really Right Stuff
headquarters. Mark doesn't work for RRS anymore, but I met Spencer there and as I was getting a quick repair done on my tripod, I saw that image of Mark's in their catalog and it reminded me of my desire to finally get a shot worth showing of that tree!
So, this morning at 3:45a, I woke my brother up, hopped in the car, and headed out to Jack Creek and Vineyard Drive. We hiked up the hill in the dark and I got this shot. The Milky Way was so incredibly bright I was speechless. And getting a clear sky in SLO at night isn't all that common in my experience. If I don't get another portfolio shot on this entire trip, I'll be happy to have finally gotten a shot of that lonely tree on the hilltop. #photography #nightsky #astrophotography #astronomy #milkyway #milkywayphotography #landscapephotography #travel #pasorobles #sanluisobispo #SLO #longexposure