Posts Tagged ‘Photography’

Week 8 - Cristo - Alta Gracia, Argentina

Week 8 – Cristo – Alta Gracia, Argentina

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cachi tour - lc





sepia landscape





the view



cachi landscape

cheese  the photographer


cachi panoramic

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I’ve been wanting to upload these for a while, but the whole computer situation slowed things down.  Moving forward, I’ll try my best to post the best photo of each week on a weekly, if not more regular, basis.  Without further ado, here are the best photos from the first 5 weeks of our South American adventure:

Week 1 - Little One - La Paz, Bolivia

Week 1 – Little One – La Paz, Bolivia

Week 2 - Reflection - La Paz, Bolivia

Week 2 – Reflection – La Paz, Bolivia

Week 3 - Las Botas - Samaipata, Bolivia

Week 3 – Las Botas – Samaipata, Bolivia

Week 4 - Untitled - Samaipata, Bolivia

Week 4 – Untitled – Samaipata, Bolivia

Week 5 - Untitled - Santa Cruz, Bolivia

Week 5 – Untitled – Santa Cruz, Bolivia

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*We’ve decided to dedicate Wednesdays to gear: the items we’ve bought, why we bought it, stuff we’ve returned. You get the idea.  We’d love to hear what you guys think, too – the good and the bad.  If we bought headlamps that you hated, we want to hear about it.  And, sometime (probably at the halfway mark of our trip) we’ll let you know what goodies treated us well & which ones we had to ditch along the way.

We love taking pictures & having to decide what camera to bring with us has been one of the bigger challenges of planning.  Originally, we planned on bringing a rugged point n’ shoot that was waterproof & shockproof, since we’ll be in the outdoors and because we’re a bit clumsy!  Being that we have such slippery fingers, we just weren’t sure if bringing our Nikon D40X (+ lenses) was going to be a good idea. 

So, we began to search of a Wallerproof camera.

The Olympus Stylus Tough-8000 was at the top of our list.  According to its specs, this little guy should be able to stand up to rough conditions: we could take it underwater, drop it in snow, you name it.  But, we noticed pretty quickly, that the reviews weren’t looking so hot.  If you take away one thing from this blog, know that Lisa spends a LOT of time, some may say too much time, researching before making purchases.  Too many customers had bad things to say about this camera, so the search continued.

The Pentax Optio WG-2 was the next camera that we thought about purchasing.  Another shockproof, waterproof, freezeproof camera.  It’s more lightweight than the Stylus and has more megapixels (16 compared to 14 for the Stylus).  We liked that this would be a more discreet camera & easier to use with our gorillapod (funky little tripod).  It had better reviews too, but we wanted to be 100% sure before making the final decision.

After scowering the travel message boards & reading other people’s experiences, we started thinking that bringing the nice camera wouldn’t be such a bad idea.  Lisa knows all the functions of her Nikon & while it would draw more attention, we would never be able to get images that nice out of a point n’ shoot.  Which seemed to be a big regret for a handful of travelers.  So, we started looking for a the best all-purpose lens, because our current lens had seen better days.  We had our sights on the Sigma 17-70mm F2.8-4.  According to other customers, it excels in low light situations, the photos are sharp with great color production, the lens is responsive & it’s a great choice for an all-purpose lens! 

So, after months of research we arrived at a new plan: get the Nikon fixed & cleaned up, purchase the Sigma lens, and buy a very cheap point n’ shoot for recreational use.  Well, that was the plan, but plans change!  In the end, we purchased the Nikon J1 (which will be used in waterless conditions) & the Fujifilm Touch (for our more adventurous days & panoramics). 

The money spent on our cameras was less than it would’ve been to buy the new lens & get our original camera fixed up.  We’re very happy with our decision to buy the Nikon J1.  The image quality surpasses that of our Nikon D40X & it’s more lightweight.  Now, we just have to get used to the camera’s interface, which can be a bit daunting if your used to a DSLR.  Wish us luck & make sure to stop by for the next gear mail where we’ll tell you about our footwear!

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We’ve been married for four years today!  It’s hard to believe it’s been that long already, but we’re excited to see what our fifth year of marriage will bring!  Exactly one year from today we’ll either know or be in our first destination for our big trip.  Pretty cool, huh? 

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

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 We had our first couchsurfing (couchsurfing.org) experience last night.  For those of you who haven’t heard of it, couchsurfing is a way to meet other people who share their love for traveling and adventure.  There are 2 ways to do that: either travel to someone’s home or be a host.  Hosting can be offering up your couch for someone to spend the night(s) or you can just meet up for drinks.  At some point I think we will change our user settings so that our couch is available, but right now it’s just on the “meet for coffee or drinks” setting.    



  So, it all started a week ago when a girl sent me a message asking if I wanted to hang out while she was in town.  I took a look at her profile, saw her references & decided to have her over for dinner.  Pauline is a student from Belgium who decided to come to Wisconsin for a bit before going back to school in a couple of weeks.  She arrived on August 10th & has already seen & done more than I have living here for 3 years!   

Pauline & I


  We had a good time talking to her about travelling, photography, biking & the weird laws that Americans have.  One example: getting in trouble for having an open container in your car.  If this same scenario happened in Belgium, as long as you weren’t drinking & driving, you’d be free to go on your merry way.  Here you’d go to jail for the night.  We don’t drink at all, which I thought she would find strange.  But Pauline said that compared to her hometown, people here hardly drink.  I found that funny, because people drink so much more here (in the Milwaukee area) than they do in Raleigh!  Anyway, it was just really nice to meet someone who was so nice & happy to meet new people.  Pauline said that it was refreshing to meet many Americans & be able to see that we’re not all loud, obnoxious & ignorant.   Overall, we had a great time & I hope that we’re able to hang out with her again before she leaves!   

Pauline, me & Corey


So, we have taken our first baby steps into the world of couchsurfing.  Pauline already knew the family she was staying with & they were having such a hard time understanding why she would meet with strangers in place she hasn’t been to before.  I think that Americans are taught not to trust anybody & always keep your guard up.  I’m not saying that every person we will encounter won’t be dangerous, but not every stranger is a criminal either.  I definitely want to have a few more visits like this before we decide to have people over for a weekend or more.  But, we have to start somewhere & in order to meet people we’re going to need to be more social.  Wish us luck!

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