Chester County HDR Nature Photo Journal Photography

I drive by every day… add snow and ice…

110204 Rt 401 Field 001 - Cross County ski tracks
Cross County ski tracks (001)

Tuesday night (2/1), we got struck with an ice storm that came in from the mid-west and headed up to New England, and in the morning, many people and business were delayed, if not closed.

Both my kids were home from school, and we watched as the thick ice that had accumulated over night on the branches, slowly melt during the day.

By Thursday morning, the sun was out, and life was getting back to normal.

While driving to my client along Conestoga Road (Rt. 401) in Chester Springs, I noticed the bright sun was creating many interesting patterns and shadows in the ice glazed fields, and I was kicking myself for not having brought my camera.

This morning, my camera bag was packed and walked out the door with me, but the conditions were much different.

It was now an over cast day, with the anticipation of some more snow, changing into rain for the rest of the weekend.

After getting my kids off to school, I started off to the clients, hoping to salvage something from what I saw on Thursday’s commute.

As I traveled by the first field, some of my hopes had be dashed. The flat light from being overcast gave no texture to the scene, so I continued.

110204 Rt 401 Field 013
Cross County ski tracks (013)

When I got closer to the second shoot area, I noticed that some of the incoming storm clouds where lining up with the sun rise in a very interesting fashion, so I pulled up ???? Road, and quickly parked with my flashers going.

Getting onto the field was very interesting, especially in Business Casual Work clothes! – It was Friday… Dress Down Friday (DDF)

Anyhow, I was barely able to get in far enough to get into clean snow, because of what had been plowed into banks…

Also hoping that I was not going to lose a good shoe, made the whole experience, it all the more interesting….

Note to self – Next time, wear different shoes in deep snow!

In under 10 minutes, I was done, and heading off to my clients with very wet cuffs on my pants…

I did take a passing look at Shoot #3, but had to continue…

For the rest of the day, I was trying to figure out when I was going to be able to return for Shoot #3.

It HAD to be today!

Between the forecasted weather, and family life at home… When was I going to do this…

Then around 3pm, I was driving back home to meet my daughter, as she got of the bus.

As I got closer to the Shoot #3 location and was looking for a parking spot.

Guess who was sitting there…

The Townships finest.

How dare they take my Parking Spot!

I needed to get this shot!

Finally, I got home, greeted my daughter, and got her afternoon snack.

After about a half hour or so of unwinding, I mentioned that we needed to go out for our Friday afternoon errands, and that I needed to do something special.

110204 Rt 401 Field hdr 01 - Cross County ski tracks
Cross County ski tracks (hdr 01)

Blah, blah, blah… Some time passes…

I’m walking down Conestoga Road, camera attached to tripod, trying to plug in the remote trigger, waiting for traffic to clear…

The traffic clears, and I am able to cross the street.

From there, I scaled some minor snow plow hills, and into some fresh snow, where I place my tripod down, and at first, it was stable, but as I aligned the head some more, the whole tripod settled…

I made corrections by means of pushing deeper into the snow, and was finally ready to “expose film”…

Where was my remote my remote shutter release!

Reaching into my pockets… Nothing…

With camera/tripod in place, I back tracked my steps, and it was not until I got to the plow drifts, that I noticed my remote trigger in the middle of the road!

Checking traffic, I was able to retrieve the unit and see it had not be run over.


I got back to camera/tripod location, plugged in my remote, and did a series of exposures with both Single HDR (HDRs) and Multi-Exposure HDR (HDRm) in mind, which were all captured in Canon RAW (cr2) format.

I was done within 5 minutes and we were off on the rest of our errands…

Publicly, again, I want to thank Madison for putting up with her father’s insanity.

Tech Talk

The following paragraphs are more informational in manner.

Hardware –

  • Camera: Canon XTi
  • Film Rating: ISO 100
  • Aperture: F22 (or Max-ed)
  • Time(s): Varied (Hand Held and Tripod)

Software –

  • Adobe Lightroom (cr2 > dng + psd > dng)
  • Canon EOS Utility (WinTel)
  • Photomatix
– Andrew
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By Andrew

A Father, Photographer and Computer Geek living in Chester County (PA).

My Photo Journal of images taken in Chester and Lancaster Counties, including Covered Bridges, Barns, Nature, Fine Art and Events. Images can also be found on and