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Mistaken for Strangers
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Tom Clark
(TomClark) - MLife

Locale: East Coast
Re: "Mistaken for Strangers" on 09/09/2011 18:40:05 MDT Print View

Your stuff just keeps getting better! Thanks for sharing.

Nico .
(NickB) - MLife

Locale: Los Padres National Forest
Mistaken for strangers on 09/10/2011 09:37:59 MDT Print View

Best piece I've read on this site in a while! Thank you Eugene.

This is just the sort of inspiration I need right now to kickstart my soon-to-be fall/winter local hiking season.


Dondo .

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Mistaken for strangers on 09/10/2011 18:27:56 MDT Print View

Wow, Eugene. This is the trip report I've been waiting for since I saw the preview on your blog, and it exceeded my expectations. You really are developing an inspired photographic style all your own. Nicely done!

Serge Giachetti
(sgiachetti) - M

Locale: Boulder, CO
wow, thanks on 09/11/2011 06:06:16 MDT Print View

Beautiful work, Eugene. Great storytelling through multiple mediums.

Aubrey W. Bogard
(bogardaw) - M

Locale: TX
Great video, photos, and writing! on 09/11/2011 17:02:38 MDT Print View

Simply OUTSTANDING Eugene! Many thanks for sharing.

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
Couldn't say it better than.... on 09/12/2011 20:42:20 MDT Print View

Many already have expressed. I was on the site last Tuesday and quickly found out it'd take a while to read this. Well, I gotta say how much I enjoyed this masterpiece of narrative, visual media, and don't forget the aural awesomeness as well. Makes me wanna get there some day. And with others. That's what I enjoy about the wilderness most, the company of others. It is just too good to experience alone. Eugene, absolutely brilliant. Well done my good and faithful hiker!

This is surely the BPL that we all want and dream of.

Walter Underwood
(wunder) - M

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Many years since I've been there on 09/21/2011 23:48:38 MDT Print View

My dad and I went backpacking in the Pecos for several summers when I was growing up. Thanks for the chance to revisit.

I recently scanned some photos from our 1975 trip. We weighed and counted everything, but the packs were still pretty heavy. At least one person was light and fast -- I remember a solo hiker blowing past us wearing Converse hi-tops. Trailrider's Wall was windy then, too.

Photos on flickr: Pecos Wilderness 1975

Campfire on the Rio Valdez

Edited by wunder on 09/21/2011 23:54:41 MDT.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
"Mistaken for Strangers" on 09/22/2011 05:28:11 MDT Print View


Thanks for sharing that excellent photograph, I love the nostalgia of it, it's a classic image, coffee can and flanel to boot.

David Chenault
(DaveC) - BPL Staff - F

Locale: Crown of the Continent
1975 on 09/22/2011 08:28:09 MDT Print View

Awesome photos. That Gerry tent looks like a tarptent!

Hk Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Pecos wilderness pics on 09/22/2011 08:46:06 MDT Print View

@Walter: Great pics from 75. I was only a kid spending a summer in nearby Santa Fe in 75 or 76.

One note on your Flikr is that the Rio Valdez does go down to Mora Flats.

Ryan Bozzell
(rybozz) - F

Locale: Southwest
Another great read peppered with spectacular imagery on 10/01/2011 14:42:11 MDT Print View

Finally got to read your account of the Pecos. I'm dying to get out there.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
"Mistaken for Strangers" on 10/13/2011 20:34:21 MDT Print View


Yes sir, we need to put something together this summer for sure, perhaps the Skyline Trail?

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
Re: "Mistaken for Strangers" on 01/20/2012 23:35:43 MST Print View

I somehow missed this on the first go-around. Simply a fantastic report and stunning photos. I'm putting together a trip report myself right now, and I must say that your photographic capabilities have taught me that I am not nearly as good of a photographer as you, and that a better camera is in store for me.

Wonderful job!

Edited by T.L. on 01/20/2012 23:55:19 MST.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
"Mistaken for Strangers" on 01/21/2012 07:59:29 MST Print View

Thank you very much for the kind words Travis. I'm looking forward to what you put together.

Kyle Meyer

Locale: Portland, OR
Re: "Mistaken for Strangers" on 01/21/2012 11:38:50 MST Print View

I missed this article when it was first posted too. This is by far the best trip report I've ever seen, and you did a fantastic job with the video and the D7000; DSLRs are not the easiest tool to get smooth, properly focused video out of. I'm eager to see the next generation of these videos with something like the Sony NEX-7 or the Canon G 1X where this incredible level of quality can fit into an ultralight baseweight.

Great job.

Hk Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Re: "Mistaken for Strangers" on 01/21/2012 12:18:55 MST Print View

All: if anyone wants to hit the skyline trail over Memorial Day, I have a good buffer of days off on either side of the holiday.

Joseph R
(Dianoda) - MLife

Locale: Chicago, IL
Re: "Mistaken for Strangers" on 05/08/2012 14:19:10 MDT Print View

Not sure how I missed this trip report until just now. Great work, and even better photography.

A couple questions, if you don't mind: what lens did you use for your photos? As far as I can tell it's an ultrawide zoom of some sort (maybe a 16-35mm f/2.8?). Regarding the dynamic range pop of the landscapes - is that the result of a polarizer/graduated ND filter or maybe a color filter done in post (perhaps a combination of all 3)?

Also, did you bring a tripod for the long exposures? I ask because I opt to use natural features on the trail as support in place of a tripod. It's hardly ideal, but better than lugging my tripod around in the backcountry (despite my current tripod being of carbon fiber and magnesium construction, it still weighs 4lbs w/ head and never seems to make it past the trailhead). Living as both a photographer and an ultralight backpacker, I've gotten used to the two identities being constantly at odds, but I love hearing about how others manage to make it work for them.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
Re: Re: "Mistaken for Strangers" on 05/08/2012 15:49:50 MDT Print View

Thanks Joseph.

Yes, the landscapes were shot with a Nikon 10-24mm 3.5-4.5, and the rest of the photographs were shot with a 35 f1.8. I had a UV filter mounted on both lenses.

Most of the photographs were shot hand held, a few, particularly the photo of Pecos Falls was taken while mounted on a Gorilla pod SLR tripod balanced on a rock in the river.

This combination of lenses covered the really wide end well and low light situations and portraits with the 35.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
Re: Re: Re: "Mistaken for Strangers" on 12/22/2012 18:54:20 MST Print View

I'm feeling a slight bit of the "winter" blues this evening, and badly desire to get out for a few days of backpacking in the mountains. Don't see that happening soon. Nothing like nostalgia and revisiting some old memories of a past trip to lift the spirit.

How lame is it to reread your own buried article and bump it? LAAAAAAME.

I can't wait to get out and hike with these guys again in 2013.

Round 3 fellas?