This Land Is My Land

FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (12mm, f/9, 1/480 sec, ISO200)

Right after we checked in at the Holiday Inn Express in Twentynine Palms we were on our way to the Joshua Tree NP. One of our favourite parks in the USA.

It’s small and less spectacular then most of the other parks in the South West but that’s a good thing because it is still no spoiled by visitors. If you visit it late afternoon there is nobody else around and it is so quiet that you can here an insect crawling on the sand. It’s fantastic!

FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10mm, f/11, 1/140 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (13.2mm, f/9, 1/120 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10mm, f/10, 1/160 sec, ISO200)

There is not much to see except the famous Joshua trees and of course those big rocks that we know so well from comic books and cartoons. In the second of the above images you can see my wife sitting in the shadow of a big rock. If you look closer at the first image you can spot my wife at the very same location looking at a map. This should give you an idea about the size of those rocks. It’s an amazing landscape.

The XF 10-24/4 OIS is the perfect lens here. Often enough such a wide lens is too extreme. It’s difficult to make it work. There is just too much in the picture. But on a sunny late afternoon in this beautiful location it is magical to shoot this lens on its wide end.

Like in the images below where I played with the shadows.

FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (11mm, f/10, 1/240 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10mm, f/10, 1/240 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (11.5mm, f/10, 1/320 sec, ISO200)

The light in the late afternoon is just magical. It’s soft and golden but there is no dust or pollution in the air so the contrasts are crisp. Every single piece of gravel casts a shadow. I love this light.

And the 10-24 is a really great lens in these conditions. If you stop it down it will give very sharp and detailed shots. I think it easily matches the 16-35/4 IS from Canon which is an excellent lens. I can’t see how the upcoming XF 8-16/2.8 WR could be any better but what do I know. Maybe I’m just afraid to see some rave reviews as soon as it is out. Do I really need to go any wider than 10mm?

FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10mm, f/9, 1/400 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (24mm, f/9, 1/420 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (15.9mm, f/8, 1/240 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (12.6mm, f/9, 1/400 sec, ISO200)
FUJIFILM X-Pro2 (10mm, f/11, 1/110 sec, ISO200)

I’m not that much of a camper anymore. At least not in a tent. I was when I was young. Later I spent a couple of vacations in an RV. On our first US trip we chose an RV but we soon found out that car plus hotel/motel is the better option.

But the campground here right inside the Joshua tree NP looks just great and I imagine to experience sunsets and sunrises here. Or the night sky full of stars! Just imagine the shots of the milky way. There is no light pollution in the park. When it’s dark it’s dark.

Maybe I will sleep right here in the car next time.

FUJIFILM X-T1 (63.8mm, f/11, 1/180 sec, ISO200)