Friday, March 21, 2008

Photostitching from Castlerock

Temperatures in the 60s, sunny and very windy.

Today I downloaded some software called Photostitch which allows you to create panoramic shots made up of several digital photos. I'd been wanting this capability for a while in order to try and capture some of the awesome mountain vistas I've ridden to here in Colorado.

I was off work by 2PM so I headed down to Castlerock to see what kind of view one could see from it's highest reachable point.

The "Rock" as it's called by the locals, is accessible via a trail from Rock Park. It's not a bad little hike up to the observation area at the base of the main rock formation but I will admit I was huffing and puffing when I neared the top of the trail! You'd think I was over 48 years old and out of shape or something! : )

On the way up to Castlerock
I got up to the observation area in about 15 minutes, the trail was fine if a bit gravelly. The Oxtar Matrix motorcycle boots I wear did fine in the rocky trail but I don't think I'd go on any long distance hikes with them on. I was still wearing my riding jacket and liner and soon overheated. There were some pretty fierce winds blowing around the Rock and I soon cooled down once I opened up the jacket and liner.

Here's the results of my first photostitching attempt. I hope to get better as I get a handle on how to shoot the shots for best merging probabilities.

After taking these shots, I trudged down the rocky trail back to the parking lot.

At the beginning of the trail

The winds were picking up even more as I geared back up at the parking lot. So I decided to head home. I took Founder's Parkway to CO86, cruising easily to Franktown and taking CO83 or Parker Road up to the town of Parker. From Parker I took the usual back roads back to my own neighborhood.

The wind gusts were pretty strong anytime I was pointed in either a Northerly or Southerly direction as they were coming in from the West. There's snow in the forecast so these winds may be the advance guard. Hopefully, the strong winds will keep the snow clouds moving and they won't have a chance to drop much snow on us.

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