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TheCreepyLurker last won the day on February 15

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About TheCreepyLurker

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  1. TheCreepyLurker

    Photo Sharing

    Previously, I made mention of Gooseberry Falls State Park and the irony of the folks standing on the ice at the base of the falls. To give added perspective, I felt it prudent to share an image of the falls at a different time of year. I'm happily sharing my favorite photo of the Middle Falls. There's a total of 4 falls over the course of the last mile of the Gooseberry River as it descends to Lake Superior. (Upper, Middle, Lower, and Fifth Falls - Yes, that's not a typo. No I have no idea where the Fourth Falls are. Fifth Falls is actually above the Upper Falls too.) In mid-July, a few weeks before Mrs. Lurker became Mrs. Lurker, we took a camping trip up north. The weather was wonderful, the hiking gorgeous, and were treated to an outstanding lightning storm on Sunday evening as we extended our stay through Monday. Overnight, it poured and poured. Thankfully our gear held out and we stayed warm and dry in the tent. Naturally, everything was pretty wet when we packed up on Monday morning to begin our trek back home. Being that Gooseberry Falls SP was right on our way home, we decided to swing in and see what the rainfall would do to the river. Neither of us knew how quickly the river would respond. We were treated to the highest water levels I've ever seen (still true today). Standing near the falls, the concussion of the water hitting the rocks at the bottom of the falls was so intense you could feel it in your body. To the point that it became uncomfortable and you'd had to walk away before feeling ill. Most of the walkways were flooded below the falls. Stairways that normally would allow you on the rocks around the fringe of the river were now stairways into a terrifying current. Thankfully, the bridge well below the falls was on high enough ground to allow passage to the other side of the river where there is a challenging trail onto the bluffs up above the river that allow you to look down on the falls. This image is from that trail. The Middle Falls is roughly 180 feet wide and 30 feet tall. Note, the color of the river is caused by the vegetation further inland. It's normally more clear but stained a dark brown color. In this photo, because of all of the recent rain and fresh runoff, there is a lot of soil that was pulled into the river causing it to be more cloudy than normal.
  2. TheCreepyLurker

    Photo Sharing

    During our trip to the Canadian Rockies a few years ago, my wife and I had planned to spend a week in Jasper National Park, and another week in the legendary Banff National Park. (both are wonderful, go spend as much time as you can in these places) We had hikes and drives, glaciers and mountains, and scenery and fun. There's really very little reason to leave these parks to see something else. But we received a tip from a family we hiked with to Sentinel Pass (check it out, it's a highlight of our trip in the Valley of Ten Peaks) that Yoho National Park just across the border from Banff (Alberta to British Columbia ) was worth visiting. Specifically Emerald Lake and Takakkaw Falls were high on the list. It's a fun drive up to the Falls complete with switchbacks, mountain views, marshy areas and the like. We made it there in the late afternoon and had brought some stuff to make dinner. We hiked up to the base of the falls where it was really misty. The wind was blowing the bottom of the falls so much that there was very little "stream" making it's way to the valley floor. It was all mist. Somehow the stream continued anyway... We made our way back to the parking lot and set up at one of the picnic tables looking towards the falls to make dinner. Before long, we noticed our picnic table was being shaded by the mountain to our backs. It was still fairly early and the falls were still lit but, it was dark for us. I pulled out the camera when I recognized what was happening. The beautiful silhouetted trees in the foreground really anchor the photo for me and drive the focus up to the falls where the subtle color from the small rainbow grabs the eye. It's fun to wander around the rest of the image and finally notice the beautiful blue sky and big puffy clouds. It was truly a gorgeous night and well worth taking an afternoon to leave Banff. Takakkaw Falls in British Columbia's Yoho National Park, is Canada's second highest waterfall. As an aside, it anyone is interested in visiting these parks, feel free to let me know. I'd be happy to offer tips on places to visit, things to see, etc...
  3. TheCreepyLurker

    12/02/19 - Cars

    Mine is an '01 Accord with 270,000 on it. Only gets 25-26 mpg sadly.
  4. TheCreepyLurker

    Photo Sharing

    So in my prior role at work, I had the opportunity to do a fair amount of international travel. I'm not personally too much of a fan of the logistics and headaches of travel, but I do enjoy the change in pace, getting to see the sights, and getting to know the people in a new place. I always found South Korea to be very comfortable and familiar. The fashion is very western in style. The cars drive on the right (and the correct) side of the road. I can't read a damn thing and only know/knew a few words in Korean but I had the fortune of traveling with our local sales manager who could help keep me out of trouble and enjoying the sights. One night, after a long day visiting customers and suppliers, we got dropped off at the hotel and I stopped into my hotel room to change clothes and grab my camera. I was in the Pangyo Techno Valley, a highly commercial area that was rapidly growing. New construction with cranes were everywhere. But I found a nice park to walk through, some nice trails that made their way into the hills, and eventually found a really nice pavilion overlooking the new construction in the Valley. It was all wood construction with ornate and very vibrant painting inside. The contrast between the old style architecture and the new construction was striking. I spent a long time hanging out up here, enjoying the sights and taking photos. This image was my favorite and very technically challenging to create. Given that it was night time with lots of bring lights from the Valley, the shadows were deep and the highlights white. In order to get the perspective I wanted (not having a fisheye lens), I knew I had to take a two panoramic image (think two rows of images). Each image that was stitched together was a composite of 3 images at different exposure levels to account for the dynamic range I was trying to capture. The final image is a whopping 14,309 x 5,813 pixels or 83MP. The largest image I've ever made. I am so happy with how the image turned out. Not only because of the time I spent to take the several dozen images that went into the final render, but also because it actually captured the feel of the place. Look up and you're in a different time. Ornate painting, handmade craftsmanship. Look out, and you're in the boom of a modern city. I went back to the hotel happy. Refreshed from the walk. Energized by what I had seen. And ready to prepare for the next day with a good night of sleep.
  5. TheCreepyLurker

    12/02/19 - Cars

    And it burns a lot of fuel (petrol for our European friends). Maybe 12 miles/gallon? Which I think roughly translates to about 830 cm/litre. Roughly...
  6. TheCreepyLurker

    Photo Sharing

    Well, you set a really high bar that I know I'll never meet, @RedFive. So, swallowing my pride, I'll get this going again with another photo. Gooseberry Falls State Park, and specifically the falls on the Gooseberry River, is a staple of Lake Superior's North Shore. The Gooseberry River runs into Lake Superior in the park but not being going over a series of fairly dramatic water falls. I've had the fortune of visiting these falls during all seasons and with high and low water (I've not yet seen the falls break up yet, that's on the bucket list). It's an easy stop with a nice big rest area, visitor center, and a short walk down paved trails to the falls themselves. There's a bit longer and more rugged trails in the park (I've been on all of them multiple times), but the falls are the reason most people visit. As we were headed back home from last year's winter adventure, we decided to swing in for a quick stop to stretch our legs before the 3 hour ride home, get some fresh air, and see the ice formations. The scene when we got there was entertaining. After watching unprepared people slip and slide up and down the trail and snapping a few photos of the ice itself, a few groups of people made their way out onto the frozen river in spite of the many warnings posted to the contrary. Every year there are stories of people falling in/breaking through the ice, and drowning. I may venture slightly onto the river but only near the edges and if the weather has been conducive to ice formation for the prior days/weeks. Thankfully these folks made it back to their cars safely, but the way this scene played out was really pretty funny. I was in this vantage point looking to capture some detail images of the ice when these people strolled into the frame. So, I zoomed out and took their picture instead. I really like how imposing the wall of ice feels contrasted to these adventurers. The sign adds a bit of comedic value. @Smith, when you visit MN, we'll go hang out at these falls. We'll do the Fifth Falls loop. I'll bring the snowshoes and/or ice spikes.
  7. TheCreepyLurker

    12/02/19 - Cars

    I technically share two cars. But that's not an option so I picked the first one.
  8. TheCreepyLurker

    Photo Sharing

    Holy crap, Red. Both for the length but also the stories. Thank you to your grandfather for the leadership and service he provided during his years. o7
  9. TheCreepyLurker

    Photo Sharing

    Really funny bear... Like this one: @Bear ? So a few of you may know that I take an annual trip up north (as if Minneapolis wasn't far enough north) to find some snow and ice. This year, we left home early Friday morning and were on the trail by early afternoon. A large snowstorm had hit the area just under a week before. When we got there, we found a packed trail, indicating sometime had been on the before us. It would be a fairly easy hike, only using spikes. After about a half mile, we found the tracks stopped. The prior adventures had turned around. So did we. But only to get snowshoes. Armed with the right gear, we moved quick over the packed section but slowed when we hit 2 feet of powdery snow and steep climbs to our overlook. The hike lasted longer than we expected, but it meant we were at the peak for sunset. And mother nature didn't disappoint. We hauled ass to get back to the car before it got too dark. It was a great start to the annual trip.
  10. TheCreepyLurker

    Photo Sharing

    Share your best! Give us the story behind it. Limit, 1 photo per post. No double posting within the same day. Taken last year near Carlton Peak in Northern Minnesota. Snow had just started flying and continued through that afternoon/night. We were at the top of Carlton Peak when it started snowing, near white out by the time we got down. Taken about the same time as my picture in the RL Picture Thread.
  11. TheCreepyLurker

    20/01/18 - Reddit

    What's Read It?
  12. TheCreepyLurker

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  13. TheCreepyLurker

    06/01/18 - Virtual Worlds

    I was never younger. Always been old.
  14. TheCreepyLurker

    29/10/18 - What music service do you use?

    I missed this one because there were too many poll threads... I have a paid Pandora account and have been for a long time. Decade maybe? I'm debating upgrading to a family Pandora plan or jumping over to Spotify. I can get on-demand music then but also can get my wife onto a paid account so we don't have to listen to ads when she's playing music... Any advice??
  15. TheCreepyLurker

    12/11/18 - What social medias do you have?

    I lurk on Facebook. I mostly ignore Twitter. I have a few folks I communicate with on WhatsApp. I have an inactive Instagram account. I have a YouTube account by extension of having a Gmail account mostly. I have a LinkedIn account that I use for mostly professional things. I have a Google+ account by extension of having a Gmail account. RIP G+. I don't have Pinterest, Tumblr, or Quora, or Snapchat for that matter.