Kathy Dennis, who was visiting from Kentucky, walks through the snow falling Thursday in downtown Steamboat Springs. The snowstorm, which was heavy for a brief period of time, moved through the area quickly and was over early in the afternoon.

Photo by John F. Russell

Kathy Dennis, who was visiting from Kentucky, walks through the snow falling Thursday in downtown Steamboat Springs. The snowstorm, which was heavy for a brief period of time, moved through the area quickly and was over early in the afternoon.

Chance of snow returns to Steamboat on Saturday

Advertisement

— The inch of snow that fell on Mount Werner early Thursday might not seem like much, but you won’t hear many complaints during a December that has brought little of the natural white stuff to Steamboat Springs or any other mountain resort in the central and northern Rockies.

Sunny skies will return to Steamboat today with a high temperature that will reach into the mid-40s. A chance of snow returns to the area Saturday, when another inch or so could fall on Mount Werner.

“Just a little dose of snow,” National Weather Service senior meteorologist Chris Cuoco said Thursday afternoon from his Grand Junction forecast office. “These are just glancing blows.”

The weather pattern that has frustrated most ski towns throughout Colorado early this winter is expected to continue into the new year, Cuoco said. He described a lingering pattern that is sending short waves of moisture north of Colorado. The systems are just barely clipping the northern part of the state and then being replaced by mounting high pressure, which typically brings dry conditions.

Even Southwest Colorado, which has enjoyed the best snow in the state so far this season, will soon find itself “high and dry,” Cuoco said.

Steamboat Ski Area is reporting a mid-mountain base of 24 inches and a summit base of 22 inches. The ski area is offering 1,992 acres of skiing and riding on 122 trails served by 15 lifts.

Despite the lack of snow, Steamboat has a deeper mid-mountain snow base and more open terrain than Vail, Beaver Creek, Keystone, Winter Park, Snowmass, Aspen, Copper Mountain and Crested Butte.

Comments

snowbirds 2 years, 12 months ago

WOW -- VERY IMPRESSIVE PHOTO, JOHN. We thought we were viewing one of Monet's exquisite paintings!!!

0

rhys jones 2 years, 11 months ago

Mom for the New Year: I sent this photo to her, and she loved it so much she decided to frame it. She wondered what color the "gurus" (above) were using, and suggested a rich dark brown, to bring out the colors.

Here you go, Mom, let's see what the experts say!! Sorry folks, but Mom rules.

0

Jeff_Kibler 2 years, 11 months ago

It's a great shot. I'm so artistically challenged that I can't imagine framing a photo so well. But what's with the rectangular artifact center-right?

0

rhys jones 2 years, 11 months ago

That bothers me too. I was admiring the technique as well as the composition. Assuming it is film, the out-of-focus Hotel Bristol sign indicates a wide aperture, while the snowflakes frozen in motion reflect a high shutter speed. Film speed is also a wide variable, and I would think a slower film would support higher resolution.

That rectangle throws water on my whole theory, as it is probably digital, about which I remain a dolt. I did mean to ask about that though.

0

David Hill 2 years, 11 months ago

The rectangle is the back of the street sign mounted on the light pole directing people to the Police Station.

0

rhys jones 2 years, 11 months ago

trafficman -- Thank you! Now it makes sense. Returning me to my original question: Film or digital? Probably the latter, but I'm an old film junkie. Thanks again.

0

John Russell 2 years, 11 months ago

Thanks for the compliments. The photo was taken during the brief snowstorm Thursday Dec. 29. My editor, Brent Boyer wanted something weather related, so I jumped in my car and headed downtown. I didn’t expect the storm to last, so I wanted to find something interesting and I knew I had to do it fast. I parked my car up the street and walked down the block to shoot a different subject. That's when I noticed this lady strolling along the sidewalk with an umbrella. I shot a few frames of her walking toward me. The photos were good and I stopped her, introduced myself and asked her name. After a short conversation she went along her way and I turned my attention back to the original subject. But as she strolled away into the snow, I realized that the composition was much better than what I had already shot. I moved slightly to get into a better position (I needed to get my car which was parked on the street to the right of the women out of the frame. I tried but there was no way to get the back side of the sign out of the frame). I made a couple more images as she walked away, and this is the image that made the cover. It was shot with a Nikon D3 mounted on a 70-200 f/ 2.8 Nikkor lens. I set my camera on a shallow depth of field to blur out any unwanted objects in the background and to draw attention to the snow. My exposure was 1/4000 of a second at f/4. My ISO was set at 800, which allows me to shift to faster shutter speeds or add depth of field without making too many other adjustments when I'm shooting subjects in the field in flat light. Hope this helps answer a few of the questions, and I enjoyed reading everyone’s comments.

John F. Russell Photographer Steamboat Pilot & Today

0

rhys jones 2 years, 11 months ago

John -- Thanks for the techno!! I had been wondering those details. I was actually a videographer in a former life, although you'd never guess it to see me now. So pardon me if my next question seems stupid, but you say you set your ISO to 800 -- is that a way you can simulate different film speeds electronically? Coming from the old ASA school, where a 200 or less would require the wide aperture you describe, combined with the fast shutter speed, freezing the flakes and reducing the depth of field, as we see demonstrated, that seemed the explanation to me -- but that's film.

However you did it, great job. I was just wondering now, is that ISO a digital thing? Is my guess close? And thank you for your patience with me.

0

Brian Kotowski 2 years, 11 months ago

"...70-200 f/ 2.8 Nikkor lens. I set my camera on a shallow depth of field to blur out any unwanted objects in the background and to draw attention to the snow. My exposure was 1/4000 of a second at f/4. My ISO was set at 800..."

You lost me at hello. Great shot, though!

0

John Russell 2 years, 11 months ago

highwaystar Yes you are correct. I can set the ISO or ASA (they are the same thing) on my camera for each shot simply by rolling a dial on my camera. In this case the light was pretty flat when I headed out of the office, so I set the ISO a little faster than normal, so that I could adjust for just about any circumstance that I encountered. By shooting at a 4000th of a second I not only stopped the snowflakes, but it also allowed me to get a shallow depth of field. I could have shot the photograph at ISO 400, and stopped the snowflakes with a slightly slower shutter speed, say a 2000th of a second, and gotten pretty much the same result — and maybe slightly better resolution if I wanted to blow the print up to the size of a wall. But things on the street unfold pretty quickly, and when the moment arrives you make the adjustments you need to get the shot. In this case I simply increased my shutter speed to maintain the aperture and get the right exposure. If I had more time I might have reduced my ISO instead for the sake of image quality, but with today’s cameras the difference between 400 and 800 is not that noticeable. Sep Sorry Sep there are times when I get way too far into details and use way too much lingo to explain what I do with a camera. I was just hoping to share a few technical details with the folks who were asking questions in the forum. You are not alone I get the same response from my wife when I start talking about cameras. I’ve always been a camera geek and I talk like one. The 70-200 is the focal length of the lens I was using at the time, and the f/2.8 refers to the maximum aperture on the camera lens. The smaller the number the more light it allows to reach the sensor and the shallower the depth field, which makes objects in the background appear out of focus or soft and less distracting than if they were in focus.

Hope this helps.

John F. Russell Photographer Steamboat Pilot & Today

0

Brian Kotowski 2 years, 11 months ago

Absolutely no need to apologize. I appreciate your work, even if the technical aspects of it are beyond me. I was trying (unsuccessfully) to lampoon my own ignorance. Not the passion you clearly have for your work.

0

rhys jones 2 years, 11 months ago

Thanks again, John, it's getting clearer. Your ability to capture the mood of the instant, consistently, continues to amaze me. In retrospect, I became overly dependent on auto-iris, as well as automated zoom on those rare occasions I used it, never experimenting enough. Then there was the time, zooming back to the station, I realized I had missed the best shot, because it simply didn't occur to me at the time. I have questioned my photographic instincts ever since; the shots I missed haunt me, more than the ones I got reward me. Part of the reason I ultimately reverted to computers, where there's always a Take II. And III, and IV,...

So your ability to do it regularly is a rare talent, and I salute you, Sir!!

0

mmjPatient22 2 years, 11 months ago

Whoa, whoa, whoa....hold on a minute... . ...we're supposed to get more snow this winter?!?!?!

0

Requires free registration

Posting comments requires a free account and verification.