Thursday, April 23, 2015

Hike 2015.029A -- Point Loma, CA

Hiked Saturday, April 18. Well, this isn't really a hike, but it was a nice walk and a very scenic spot. I was at Point Loma Nazarene University, to watch my nephew pitch for the home team.

The home team, by the way, claims they have the world's most scenic baseball field. And they very well may be right about that.

The field is near the edge of clay cliffs that rise perhaps 200 feet, above the Pacific Ocean. The wind whips in off the water, and, if it's blowing strong enough, hitting a home run towards left field is an impossibility.

Adjacent to the field is a track, and coast-ward of the track is a drop-off. Dorms are a level below, but still probably 50 feet above the ocean.

A small road passes through the university, and gets you both to the dorms and to the lower parking area with ocean access. You'll still have to walk some along the clay cliffs, and take some care not to slip along the way. But it's a gorgeous walk, because the ocean's right there.

Also, I observed, that if you go there in mid-April, at least, the flowers are blooming. Daisies were thick, wild raddish was not rare, and morning glory were mixed in. There was also some sage, and a whole lot of bees.
I took my time walking, though it's a pretty short walk--I doubt if it's more than 1/2 mile from the ballfield stands to the beach.

I've never gone down to the actual beach, though. I'm just taking pictures, and, in particular, I wanted to take pictures of surfers. That worked better from up on the cliffs.
I think everything posted here was with my Tamron 70-300 lens, which I still like.

It does have trouble focusing on moving objects. However, with surfers, they're pretty far away and not changing their distance from you very quickly, so the lens does fine.
However, the surfers are a pretty good distance out. I'm not great at estimating distances over open water, but I do know that, even at 300mm, the surfers were pretty small. All my surfer shots here were cropped to 1/2 the dimensions of the original shot.
Put another way, the shots I've presented here are the equivalent of a 600mm lens on my camera. And because my camera uses the APC-sized sensor, it already increases the apparent focal length of my shots by 1.5. So this is the equivalent of shooting 35mm film with a 900mm telephoto.
Well, not exactly. Because of the smallish sensor, you're sure to lose resolution when you blow your picture up. So, if I had 35mm, the shots might be a little sharper, if I were able to get the focus down.
The other thing that makes these shots tough (besides the distance) is the back-lighting. By early afternoon, the sun's going to be west of south. If you're shooting more or less to the west, the sun'll be at least partially behind them.
In addition, the surfers are wearing wetsuits, because the water's relatively cold. So a back-lit, black-suited indvidual just isn't going to photograph well against the bright white foam of the surf off Point Loma.
Nonetheless, I was semi-satisfied with my shots. Particularly when I shot bursts of shots, you could really see the surfer's carve the waves and make impossible twists and turns.
As noted previously, less than 1 mile of walking on this "hike." I did walk over a mile, doing circles on the track, and I did another 100 yards or so each way to and from the car. But nowhere near 3 miles, so not a hike by itself.

But I got some decent shots I'd like to share.

Still many completed hikes I haven'g blogged, yet.