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Photo tours and workshops

Yosemite Nikon D3x

A diglloyd photo tour is guided by me, Lloyd Chambers. It is a personalized photo-immersion experience, designed for off-the-beaten-track photography, while providing enjoyment of the sheer beauty of the outdoors.

Contact Lloyd.

Our group is limited to a maximum of three (four by agreement/arrangement). You'll get all the personal attention you need in a relaxed setting at your own pace, and the ability to explore beautiful areas with expert guidance of the terrain and opportunities. You can shoot all day and/or you can take a pleasant nap in the sun if and when you prefer! Few places are as relaxing and the sense of wilderness is heightened. We minimize travel time so as to maximize enjoyment.

Unlike commercialized trips with eight or more participants, diglloyd photo tours are limited to a maximum of 3 participants so that the trip remains flexible and responsive to personal interests, as well as preserving the sense of privacy and wonder in some of the world’s most beautiful locations. However, most clients choose a personalized one-on-one tour which is custom-tailored to personal goals.

Your satisfaction and delight with your experience is my goal. If you've never seen the high country of Yosemite and the White Mountains, this is the way to see it for Real.

2014

Tours are a minimum of two days, three days generally recommended. The “available dates” indicates scheduling flexibility. Most clients find 1:1 an ideal scenario, but groups of up to three can be accommodated. Price per person lower for 2 or more, so bring a friend.

Yosemite high country, June 2014

June 14/15. With the Zeiss APO lens option.
June 24/25/26. With the Zeiss APO lens option.

This tour will focus on the high country of Yosemite with optional excursions to Lundy Canyon and DeChambeau Ranch near Mono Lake.

Early June in the Yosemite high country offers an awe-inspiring display of both the tranquility of crystal clear melt-water, as well as its sheer power. Still too early for flowers, think water and lingering snow, with fresh green growth. In 2011, the record snowpack means tremendous water into July.

White Mountains, June 2014

Available dates: June 16 - June 19. With the Zeiss APO lens option.

This tour (2 or 3 day options within that time frame) will focus on the White Mountains and ancient bristlecone pines, but upon request can be extended to other areas in the Owens Valley or Yosemite areas.

White Mountains, August 2014

Available dates: TBD, likely in 1st week or two, Zeiss APO lens option TBD.

This tour will focus on the White Mountains and ancient bristlecone pines. August is a terrific month for “weather” from stunning cloud buildups to full-on snow. Ideal time for infrared photography due to typical cloud patterns.

White Mountains, September 2014

Available dates: September 17/18/19/20/21/22/23/24/25.
Sept 17-22 inquire availability, 23/24/25 available With the Zeiss APO lens option.

This tour will focus on the White Mountains and ancient bristlecone pines, but upon request can be extended to other areas in the Owens Valley or Yosemite area. Optional mountain biking excursions for anyone with that calling.

Older tours

Yosemite high country and/or White Mountains, June/July/September/October 2012

June 2012 photo tour available. Contact.

Tours planned in July, September and October 2012 also, dates pending. Other options available, please inquire.

Yosemite high country, September 18/19, 2011

October is my favorite time of year in Yosemite, but carries the risk of snow, so this tour is early enough to avoid problematic park closure.

September is dry, but there are also no mosquitoes, with (usually) warm and pleasant daytime temperatures, with crisp nights.

Yosemite granite favored by climbers
Yosemite granite favored by climbers

This tour entails moderate hiking and you should be in reasonable physical condition. Night-time astrophotography is also a possibility should the weather cooperate.

Sept 18: Shoot a high ridge area at dawn, easily accessible from your car. Move on to Patriarch Grove for afternoon and dusk, and night if atmospheric conditions are suitable.

Sept 19: Shoot Patriarch Grove at dawn for intensely saturated color in the standing bristlecones. After a mid-day rest, take a pleasant hike to a rarely visited pristine area with both bristlecones and a view of the Sierra Nevada, for sunset and dusk.

Signup

Cost depends on group size. This tour can be extended to the Bristlecone tour (see below).

Contact me to sign up. You will need to provide your own vehicle, food, lodging (camp or motel/hotel), but I can advise and help on the particulars including clothing and gear. Unless you are sure that altitude will not affect you badly, plan on arriving at least one day early to adjust to the high altitude.

Plan on bringing bottled water, and food for breakfast/lunch/snacks as we are out in the field all day, with a 2-hour break mid-day.

Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest, White Mountains, September 20/21, 2011

White mountain bristlecone pine
Ancient Bristlecone Pine (White Mountains)

The ancient bristlecone pine forest is a stunning exposition of the world’s most ancient trees. Few landscapes can match the raw beauty of this area. Moving even higher, one finds an abstract moonscape without the skeletons of trees thousands of years old.

This tour entails short hikes with easy access to your car. Night-time astrophotography is also a possibility should the weather cooperate.

Sept 20: Shoot a high ridge area at dawn, easily accessible from your car. Move on to Patriarch Grove for afternoon and dusk, and night if atmospheric conditions are suitable.

Sept 21: Shoot Patriarch Grove at dawn for intensely saturated color in the standing bristlecones. After a mid-day rest, take a pleasant hike to a rarely visited pristine area with both bristlecones and a view of the Sierra Nevada, for sunset and dusk.

Signup

Contact me to sign up. You will need to provide your own vehicle, food, lodging (camp or motel/hotel), but I can advise and help on the particulars including clothing and gear. Unless you are sure that altitude will not affect you badly, plan on arriving at least one day early to adjust to the high altitude.

Plan on bringing bottled water, and food for breakfast/lunch/snacks as we are out in the field all day, with a 2-hour break mid-day.

Yosemite Water Trip, July 5/6/7, 2011

Early June in the Yosemite high country offers an awe-inspiring display of both the tranquility of crystal clear melt-water, as well as its sheer power. Still too early for flowers, think water and lingering snow, with fresh green growth. In 2011, the record snowpack means tremendous water into July.

All trips are customized to the interests of participants, but one option will be high resolution landscapes via multi-shot stitching with various techniques, likely including the GigaPan Epic Pro.

Unlike commercialized trips with 10-15 participants, diglloyd photo tours are limited to a maximum of 3 participants so that the trip remains flexible and responsive to personal interests, as well as preserving the sense of privacy and wonder in some of the world’s most beautiful locations.

Yosemite Nikon D3x
Late June in the high country (Tenaya Canyon)

This spring tour entails moderate but easy-paced hiking to access some stunning locations. Night-time astrophotography is also a possibility should the weather cooperate, and if you'd like to see the glowing eyes of high altitude trout, just ask after sunset.

July 5: Meet at 4:30pm for evening shoot of glacial erratics and high peaks at sunset.
July 6: Hike stunning Tenaya Canyon for awe-inspiring granite, waterfalls, crystal clear water, emergent forest green growth.
July 7: Explore a rarely seen aspect of the Cathedral Lakes area (alternative options available for less hiking).

Instructional field sessions

If you're relatively new to photography, I can advise you on a system to bring/buy. Mid-day information instructional field sessions during lunch are available at your option.

Each session will be approximately an hour at mid-day, to save the "sweet light" for shooting. Your attention is optional, you are free to continue shooting if you prefer.

Signup

Contact me to sign up today! You will need to provide your own vehicle, food, lodging (camp or motel/hotel), but I can advise and help on the particulars. Plan on bringing bottled water, and food for breakfast/lunch/snacks.

Yosemite Nikon D3x
High peaks near Tuolumne Meadows

Death Valley National Park in late February 2011

I'm planning a late February2011 tour in Death Valley, in the Feb 21-25 time period. Contact me if interested.

Late February is a fabulous time to visit in Death Valley: up to 80° and dry (very pleasant), sometimes snow-capped peaks, hardly anybody there, flowers are sometimes near peak.

You will need to bring your own vehicle, and it should be capable of rough dirt roads (high clearance not needed). You just can't have all the fun without one in DV, and I'm not setup to carry passengers in my own vehicle.

Yosemite in spring, June 9/10/11 2010 with optional extension to White Mountain bristlecones

Early June in the Yosemite high country offers an awe-inspiring display of both the tranquility of crystal clear melt-water, as well as its sheer power, but most mosquitoes should not yet be airborne. Too early for flowers, think water and lingering snow, with emerging buds and greens, varying by altitude. Very few people ever experience this aspect of Yosemite, yet it is a lovely time.

Yosemite Nikon D3x
Late June in the high country (Tenaya Canyon)

This spring tour entails moderate but easy-paced hiking to access some stunning locations. Night-time astrophotography is also a possibility should the weather cooperate, and if you'd like to see the glowing eyes of high altitude trout, just ask after sunset. Wide open vistas as well as intimate close-ups and dynamic shooting are all on the menu. Mid-day wading and swimming optional.

An optional extension to the Bristlecone Pines in the White Mountains is available, which demands little in the way of hiking (an SUV is recommended for White Mountains dirt roads, rental possible, any car will do for Yosemite).

White mountain bristlecone pine
Bristlecone Pine

June  9: Meet at 3:30pm for afternoon/evening shoot of glacial erratics and high peaks at sunset.
June 10: Hike stunning Tenaya Canyon for awe-inspiring granite, waterfalls, crystal clear water, emergent forest floor growth and perhaps a snow cave.
June 11: Explore a rarely seen aspect of the Cathedral Lakes area.

Optional extension:

June 12: White Mountain bristlecones. The ancient bristlecones, and perhaps wild sheep and ground-nesting birds.

June 13: White Mountain bristlecones in more detail, especially morning shooting of some ancient specimens.

Instructional field sessions

Any type of equipment works for this outing. If you're relatively new to photography, I can advise you on a system to bring/buy. At least two instructional field sessions are offered (others available upon request):

  • Ultra high-resolution imagery using stitching.
  • Digital infrared.
  • Lenses and equipment for high performance imaging.

Each session will be approximately an hour at mid-day, to save the "sweet light" for shooting. Your attention is optional, you are free to continue shooting if you prefer.

Signup

Contact me to sign up today! You will need to provide your own vehicle, food, lodging, but I can advise and help on the particulars. This early in the season, very few amenities are available in Yosemite, so plan on bringing bottled water, and food for breakfast/lunch/dinner.

Yosemite Nikon D3x
Tenaya Canon Valley Floor

Yosemite, October 2009

Yostemite fall color
Dana Meadows

October is my favorite time of year in Yosemite. Water is at its ebb, but there are also no mosquitoes, and the temperatures are warm and pleasant in the daytime, with crisp nights. Frost and fall color can yield new shooting opportunities over and above the usual stunning vistas.

I am planning two photo tours in October, back-to-back:

  • the weekend of October 3/4 (arrive Friday night)
  • the weekend of October 10/11 (arrive Friday night)

Fall color will have started by October 3/4, but might not have peaked. Color could be better or worse by October 10/11, depending on storm/wind activity. An optional 3rd and 4th day extension within Yosemite and/or to the White Mountains is available by arrangement.

New to photography?

Any type of equipment works for this outing. Even a point-and-shoot can deliver great images here. If you're relatively new to photography, I can advise you on a system to bring/buy.

Instructional field sessions

Yostemite fall color
Tenaya Canon pool

At least two instructional field sessions are planned (others available upon request):

  • ultra high-resolution imagery using stitching.
  • digital infrared.
  • lenses and equipment for high performance imaging.

Each session will be approximately an hour at mid-day, to save the "sweet light" for your shooting. Attendance is not required, you are free to continue shooting if you prefer.

Scheduling and customizing

Photo tours to Yosemite, the White Mountains of California and Death Valley are offered on a regular basis, or can be scheduled by request (Death Valley is most comfortably seen in February, with the mountain destinations best for May - Oct).

Tours are limited to a maximum of four participants to allow your time to be maximized for your particular goals.

A tour can be custom-tailored for individuals or small groups (friends, husband+wife, etc). Those from overseas looking to experience the American west might consider a photo tour an excellent way to see places like Yosemite in-depth— travel with a few friends and have a unique experience!

What's in a tour?

A tour is a guided trip to fascinating photographic destinations which are off the beaten path. The primary goal is to provide exceptional shooting opportunities in a relaxed and flexible group. Good physical fitness is a plus, but there is plenty to see with only modest effort, and the small group size keeps things flexible.

In addition, instruction in all aspects of photography is available during the tour (mid-day is a good choice). Examples of instruction include digital infrared, stitching techniques, use of shift lenses, optimizing depth of field/exposure/dynamic range, lens selection, etc. Anything you want, and anything you might have read about here at diglloyd.com.

Arrival and departure

Tours generally meet the evening before over dinner. As these are field shooting tours, we do not return to a base, so planning for a day out in the wild is your responsibility (assistance/advice is offered).

Past tours


White Mountains August 15/16 2009

White mountain bristlecone pine

August offers the best possibility for unusual weather, as I learned in 2004, when 4" of snow was delivered. At other times, storms have brought a deep purple sky and monumental rainbow.

See Scheduling and Customizing for general details.

This two-day tour (optional 3rd-day extension) will take place high in California's White Mountains, where the best Bristlecones exist, living and long dead. The bristlecones are stunning, and this is the spot where you'll find subjects as good or better than any you've seen published.

Easy access to great subjects

With solitude and immense natural beauty, this is the perfect place to get that special shot of your own at dawn or dusk. Opportunities abound both day and night (think star trails and bristlecones like the ones seen here). Infrared is also a fantastic option.

Minimal hiking/effort is required for fantastic opportunities. You can bring heavy or bulky gear (eg a long telephoto), and have easy access to it in your vehicle.

Logistics

We will meet the prior evening, so plan on arriving the day before; we start early the first day.

Please note that the shooting locations range from 10,000 to 12,000 feet in altitude.

White mountain bristlecone pine

You will bring your own vehicle (or share with others as you prefer). A high-clearance vehicle is recommended eg an SUV. Four-wheel drive is not required, but offers other route options for the inquisitive. Jeeps can be rented in the nearby city of Bishop for anyone wishing to explore a wider area on their own before or after the trip, or simply to enjoy the experience in a new way.

Assistance with planning/scheduling is provided. Participants are advised to arrive a day in advance, and allow for leaving the day after the tour so as not curtail the last day's opportunities.

Participants can find accommodations in Bishop or Big Pine, CA. To save a long early-morning drive to Patriarch Grove (almost two hours from Bishop), participants may wish to camp in the mountains. There is an established campground as well as other dirt-roadside options. Camping is highly recommended because it affords night-time opportunities for star trails and the like.

Sign me up!

White mountain bristlecone pine
White mountain bristlecone pine

 

June 2009 Yosemite tour

Please see the May 20 blog entry for tour description. The group had a great time, with fantastic weather conditions and lots of spring melt-water. We explored four locations in two days.

Example images shown below are from Yosemite National Park.

Yosemite Nikon D3x
Near Cathedral Peak
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Tenaya meadow
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Glacial Erratics
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Forces of Nature
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Glacial polish
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Above the falls
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Dome near Tuolumne meadows
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Tuolumne meadows
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Unicorn (left) and Cockscomb peaks, as seen from Tuolumne meadows
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Night sky near Saddlebag Lake
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Underwater beauty
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Trout habitat
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Black eye bowl
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Cathedral Peak
Yosemite Nikon D3x
Tenaya Lake traffic

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