Lighthouse at Ka’Ena Point on Oahu, Hawaii

Loving Hawaii

Here is the thing…every time I go to Hawaii, it seems harder and harder to actually leave Hawaii when the time comes. For the past few years I have been trying to get there once or twice a year and this last visit to Oahu I really was NOT ready to leave. There is just a raw beauty in Hawaii, truly unlike anywhere else. You have to get out away from the tourists, but the Hawaiian’s have a really good thing and they know it!

Ka’Ena Point is West

As far west as you can go on the island of Oahu is Ka’Ena Point. You either need a 4×4 to get there or you walk like I did. It’s probably a hot hour+ hike but I think the point is worth the trek, especially if you enjoy walking on a muddy 4×4 trail with the beach on one side and the Hawaiian mountains on the other. The entire area is a wildlife preserve for several species, but I specifically got to see the Laysan Albatrosses up pretty close! This big bird was just chillin in his nest apparently unconcerned by all the gawkers. This “lighthouse” overlooks the rocky beach where there were quite a number of locals having a good time.

Photo Technical Info

Cannon Beach Oregon Haystack Rock and The Needles

In Search of Childhood Film Locations

This was the photo I was looking for when we ended up at Ecola State Park. When we arrived at Ecola and stood on the lookout point, I realized right away we had arrived in the wrong location for the photo I wanted. This happens quite a bit. A helpful local tells you about their favorite vantage point away from all the crazy photographers on the beach, not understanding you are, in fact one of the crazy ones.

Today’s Photo – Goonies Never Say Die (and neither do photographers)!

We were lucky to make it to Cannon Beach just before the sun went down. You might recognize Haystack Rock (on the right) and The Needles (on the left) from the 1980’s film The Goonies. When the circumstances of life throw up a roadblock to what you want, it’s easy to give up…to settle. The much harder thing is to plunge in and risk everything. Sometimes the reward makes the gamble worth the risk.

Photo Technical Info

Sunset at Ecola State Park in Oregon

Day’s Gone By

I sometimes struggle with what to say about a photo. How do you capture your feelings as succinctly as the camera captures that decisive moment? What can I say about a beautiful scene that really brings home what it was like to stand in that spot. Maybe I share how I got there, or the smell of the ocean and a million trees. Maybe I just let you take it in and create your own story, sometimes the camera does a better job than I ever could.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 7 March, 2014
  • Focal length: 32mm
  • ISO: 100
  • Shutter speed: 1/500s
  • Title: Sunset at Ecola State Park in Oregon

Sunrise from Lanikai Beach

Talking to Locals

If there is one thing I need to do more when traveling, it’s making friends with people who live where I am visiting. They know the best places to go! I took this fantastic photo of sunrise off Lanikai Beach one morning in Oahu. Later that day I went to check into my hotel and was talking about hiking and sunrise and the girl at the hotel checking me in said she had been hiking Lanikai that very morning. Wait…I was just there! In reality she was hiking Lanikai (mountain) up to the pillboxes while I was chilling on the beach. Regardless, the next time I am in Oahu I found yet another amazing location to catch sunrise! It just goes to show you being friendly pays off.

Lanai Lookout Oahu

Pulling off the Highway

I kept thinking…don’t make me stop this car…while driving around Ohau. The problem isn’t screaming kids in the back, but rather gorgeous views that are ALL over the island. Driving around the coast (or anywhere really) there always seems to be a new terrain, some new rock formation, a different type of beach to take in. It takes me FOREVER to get anywhere, but them again, on island time I don’t much care!


This particular location is called Lanai Lookout. If you hop over the fence (normal in Hawaii for me) you are presented with a really wonderful rock formation where you can see the ocean eating away a layers of ancient, now cooled but once molten rock. Someone had spent a good deal of time in this spot and took the time to carve some sort of sun sigil in the stone formation.

Waikiki Sunset

Mahalo Sunset

One of my favorite things about Hawaii is watching the sunset over the water on a isolated beach. Now while you can’t really call Waikiki isolated, it is one fantastic spot to watch the sun sink below the ocean. And somehow when I walked down this little strip, I felt right with the world.

I should also mention that when I walked to the end I did so with a group of Buddhist monks visiting from Asia. I felt a bit awkward as I wasn’t quite sure the exact decorum. They seemed to not speak much English and they had a guide translating to English. I went all the way to the end to get some photos when a big wave came up and completely splashed me. I was done taking pictures as I walked by sopping wet, I said to the guide, “It’s much the same with life.”

The Best Sunset in Honolulu

Awesome Sunsets

Happy Labor Day everyone! I hope everyone gets to get out and spend time in the sun one last time before the official end of summer. This photo was taken in Oahu at Puu Ualakaa State Park. There is a great overlook and not too many people. The trees were a bit tall for my liking, but you get a decent view regardless. I shot this as an HDR with multiple frames stitched together. I am afraid, because of its width, it displays smaller on the site. Click the photo below to get a slightly bigger version!

Pali Lookout Sunrise


I have a hard time getting up before dawn, but it almost never fails that I wake up when I should. I have this strange built in alarm clock that rarely lets me sleep in these days. I always expect jet lag to throw it off, but somehow, I always wake up about the right time. One of the great things about Hawaii is that you can stay up really late and you end up waking up REALLY early. Since I am up I usually can talk myself into a sunrise or two…after all, photography is why I travel. This was one of the many wonderful weather days I had while on Oahu and sunrise was a sight to see!

A Dreamy Maui Sunset

Warm Relaxation

Just look at it will you. Can you feel the warm, wet sand? Can you smell the sweat scent of sweat and sunscreen? Do you feel the tension leaving your body as you listen to the Hawaiian guitar playing in the distance? This week I am traveling back to Hawaii to visit my second Hawaiian Island (O‘ahu). This photo was taken on my first expedition to the islands when we visited Maui. I can’t imagine a reason anyone would not love this place. I see myself visiting often…I hope you will too!

San Francisco Sunrise


We looked out the window of our hotel room and were greeted with two amazing sites of contrast. One was the amazing city of San Francisco. It’s a wonder! A city built on the most inhospitable geography. The City has burned, flooded been destroyed by earthquake…it is a wonder of modern construction and civil engineering. The other amazing site was the sunrise. Despite all we have and will do as a people, I am always most struck by the awesome power, majesty and beauty of the natural world. It is these two contrasts, both the natural and the man-made wonder that had me grabbing for my camera.