Monday, November 2, 2009

A Balloon Festival with no balloons

I’ve planned a trip to Winchester, VA a few months ago. I booked a hotel for a couple of days and made plans to visit Skyline Drive and the annual Winchester Balloon Festival. We arrived at our hotel on Thursday and visited Skyline Drive after getting checked in. We were hoping to photograph the beautiful fall foliage along Skyline Drive. We were disappointed because there was about 10 feet of visibility due to the thick clouds that were lingering around the mountains so needless to say the photographic opportunities were nil but we had high hopes for Friday.

We woke up at 4AM to be able to get to the mountains in time to catch the sunrise. We were disappointed once again with the thick cloud cover until we got a break in the clouds. It only lasted about 20 minutes, just in time to get this image:

The clouds rolled back in quickly but I wasn’t ready to quit shooting yet. I couldn’t really shoot anything wide because the lack of visibility so I decided to pull out the 400mm and snag these shots:

We later stopped for breakfast at a restaurant off of Skyline Drive. The food was good but the architecture was better. Here is a shot of the restaurant’s ceiling:

We decided to make our way to downtown Winchester. It was a gloomy day but at least we were under the clouds and not literally in them. Here are a few shots I made while in town:

Yummy Thia food.

Saturday morning was the big morning. THE HOT AIR BALLOON LAUNCH! We arrived at the Balloon festival at 7AM ready to capture the big hot air balloons. We left at 8:30AM after they announced the balloon launch was cancelled due to the weather. BUMMER! :-(
I did sang a few non-balloon photos at the festival:

All the aniticipation and planning went down the tubes. It was time to head back home. We drove down Skyline Drive and I managed to get one more decent photo:

There's always next year.


Brian Matiash said...

You know, Will, I really do love your portrait shots that you share with all of us.

However, the images in this blog post really shows your versatility as a photographer. I really, really love the shots that you've shared here. They are quite excellent.

I didn't know you have a 400mm bad-boy. My favorite quote: 'the food was good but the architecture was better.' Spoken like a true photographer.

Keep up the great work with this blog. If you have some time, I'd love your thoughts on my relatively new blog,

Keep in touch, amigo. Let me know if you have plans to come up north to the New England area.


Developing Designs said...

Though you may not have captured anything of what you intended to, I think (in my opinion) you got some awesome shots, and looks like all was not lost. I love the ones you took with the 400mm, very impressive. They are all beautiful and inspirational, thanks for sharing.

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