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2012 Photoshoot Day 5, Part 2 – San Angelo SP (Jan 15)

January 22, 2012
House Finch

© jmillerphoto.com - House Finch

Part 2 of my day was to take me back to my adopted hometown of San Angelo, Texas with the desire to, at a minimum, make it to San Angelo SP.  After a quick stop in Junction to refuel my body I headed up the familiar road to San Angelo.  Open comment to Valero on the highway: $3.50/gallon for regular unleaded?  Really?  When it was $3.08 in San Antonio and $3.25 in downtown Junction?  Is it $.25 a gallon cheaper when it is trucked a mile down the road?  Taking advantage of the traveling public is not cool.

I arrived at San Angelo SP at a little after 2pm.  I paid my fee, entered the park, and made a bee line for the blind.  I was pleasantly surprised.  The new windows had been installed and they were far and away better than what had been in there before.  The water was running and seed was out.  The downside is that the light is still absolutely wretched in the afternoon and no amount of work short of moving the blind will help that.  The species total in the 20 minutes was light with only 8 species seen.  The highlight bird was a Canyon Towhee, bringing the total for the year up to 51.  My eBird list is posted.

I shot in the blind for about 20 minutes, surveyed outside of the blind to satisfy some morbid curiosity, and the drove around the park.  Just as I was getting settled in at the Prairie Dog town at the south end of the park I received a call that the cargo I was in town to pick up was about 15 minutes outside of town.  With that I headed out of the park and onto my scheduled rendezvous.

All in all it was a good visit.  I was happy that the blind had been repaired and I’m hoping to have a chance in about a month to come back and shoot there again.  Seeing the prairie dogs was cool as well.  But it was an awful long day and I was really happy to get home.

About the Image:
This is a wretched image and is demonstrative of how bad the light is in the blind during the afternoon.  Even with the Better Beamer providing fill flash, the light is wholly and completely unusable.  That is because the blind faces nearly due south and the deep of winter the light is illuminating the facing side of the blind.  The only way for this blind to work in the winter is a light overcast to diffuse the sunlight.  Kudos to the park staff and volunteers for doing the best with what they have to work with.  They’re trying hard.  But you can’t make chicken salad from chicken feathers.

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