Gary Jones Photos | Blog | arkansas fall photography Trip day 3
blog post on day 3 of our fall color photography trip in Arkansas.
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Arkansas 2015 Fall Color Photography – Day 3


We woke up late this morning after a very long day of travel and hiking with William Rainey through the Little Misouri State Park yesterday that lasted into the evening.   We were so tired that we stopped off on our way back to the resort last night and picked up dinner at The Chopping Block in Mena, Arkansas and then took it with us to the resort to eat and crash into bed.  We downloaded the day’s worth of images onto our hard drive and made a backup, then took a cursory look at them – but that’s about all.  We figured since we would be leaving for Branson, Misourri today where we would be staying for over a week we would take the time to look at them more closely then.


While we were out shooting in the park we discovered that Christine’s Nikon D300 just wasn’t capturing the color as it should have been.  We played with the settings, even going to the point of setting it back to the factory defaults – but it just wasn’t getting the quality of the color like my Nikon D800 was or William’s Canon D3.  Since we were just starting our Fall color trip we decided to rent a camera from Bedford’s Camera in Fort Smith, Arkansas on our way to Branson and we picked up a Nikon D7000 body for her to use on the rest of the trip.  Thankfully, that saved the day (and week).


The trip from Mena to Fort Smith started out on winding roads you find everywhere in Arkansas passing through some really small towns till we  finally connected to a major highway and we could set the cruise control and go!  By the time we got to Fort Smith it was late afternoon and we picked up the D7000 and headed right back onto the highway and on to Branson.  As a travel day with a lot of distance to cover we didn’t stop to shoot anything as we knew it would take us quite a while to make it to our destination for the night.  Travel days are always good for checking out the new music we’ve brought along and talking about our hikes from the previous day.  Because of the trouble Christine had with her camera we also talked about whether it was time to upgrade from her D300 to a full-frame camera like my D800 or go with one of the new mirror-less full frame cameras like the new Sony’s that were out.  There are some compelling reasons to go with a mirror-less camera, especially given the lighter weight and high megapixel counts available.  Combine the Sony body with a Nikon lens adapter and she would still have full use of our investment in Nikon lenses — although some of the new Zeiss lenses made for the Sony are extremely nice and might be a consideration later.  Though we didn’t decide on anything during the drive it did give us time to talk about what we wanted to accomplish over the week ahead and just enjoy being together.


By the time we reached Branson tonight it had begun raining and was dark, but our GPS pointed us towards the cabin we had rented for the week+ stay in Branson without fail.   We found the cabin on and rented it to serve as our base of operations for the next week or so of traveling to shoot the Fall color around Arkansas and Missouri.  The cabin is situated away from all of the traffic and theaters in Branson, but close enough to get to places to eat within a few minutes.  Inside there’s room to spread out our gear and relax as well – especially good after such a long drive in the dark and rain.  To be honest, we are about as beat after a day of traveling as we were after the day of hiking yesterday.


Tomorrow the forecast is for clearing skies and we plan to be up early and out the door with our gear headed to the Buffalo River area to see what the color is like along the river.


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