Photography . . . Travel . . .

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Pirates !

Heather and I went to the Pirate Faire today. It's sort of like a Renaissance Faire, except with more pirates . . . lots more pirates. And a few belly dancers too.

The mid-day light was rather harsh, so I only got a few pictures that I like enough to post here. There are a few more on my SmugMug site, at the link below.

Click here to see a few more images from the Gold Coast Productions Pirate Faire held at the Sheraton Four Points in San Diego on June 25, 2011.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Our New Neighbor

It seems we have a new addition to the neighborhood - and I hope he (or she) stays around a while.  This owl has decided to take up residence in a large palm tree a few houses down the street from us. There are a couple more that live in another palm a few houses in the other direction. One of my neighbors thinks they're a family, with parents and a younger one or two.  

For now all I have are a few shots like this, which aren't very good, but I'll work on getting some more. Hopefully they'll stick around the neighborhood for while. It's fun to listen to the owls at night.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day Paka (the male Malayan tiger at the San Diego Zoo)

The keepers decided to give Paka, the male Malayan tiger, a Father's Day present this morning. It even came in a little gift bag, but he didn't have to do much to get it unwrapped. Here he is on his way down the hill, he knows they've left something out for him.

It looks to be a giant femur bone, hanging from a post in paper bag. Heather asked what kind of animal it came from. Judging by the size, I would say either a cow or a dinosaur. Whatever it was, it looked fresh.

He pickup up that 10-pound or so bone like it was nothing and went down into his little cave to gnaw on it for a while.

Paka's newest kittens, Christopher and Conner, will probably be out on display with mom Mek sometime in July.  

Meanwhile, at the hippo pool . . .

. . . mom Funani and little Adhama were napping in the water. Every now and then they would stick their noses up above the surface for a quick breath, then back down again. Not a lot of action at the hippo pool today, but fun to watch none the less.

The pygmy hippos were even less active, this sign was more exciting to see than they were.

Actually, no matter what level of animal activity is going on, any day is a good day for a walk around the San Diego Zoo. The fishing cat was out (sort of), the otters were swimming around, lots of various primates, one of the pandas was eating lunch, some new baby flamingos (they're gray not pink when they're young), and of course, the peacock who likes to hang out by the ducks at the flamingo pool.

Click here to see more images from my walk around the San Diego Zoo on Sunday, June 19, 2011.

Mission San Juan Capistrano

I took a drive up to San Juan Capistrano on Saturday morning. It's about an hour's drive north, and the main thing to see is the old Mission. The Mission was founded in 1776 - by 1806 it had over 1,000 inhabitants and over 10,000 head of cattle. 

One of my favorite parts of the Mission is the large central courtyard, which has lots of trees and a large fountain in the center with some great koi. The is a nice shady interior portico that goes almost all the way around the outer perimeter of the courtyard.

The roses in the center of the courtyard are particularly nice this time of year.

The Great Stone Church was destroyed by an earthquake in 1812, and has never been rebuilt. From what is left standing it must have been an impressive structure in its day.

There is still a small chapel that is in use today.

Click here to more images from the Mission San Juan Capistrano on Saturday, June 18, 2011.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Maritime Museum of San Diego

I stopped in to the Maritime Museum of San Diego for a brief visit this afternoon. It just seemed like the thing to do after a lunch of fisherman's soup at Point Loma Seafoods.

My first stop was the submarine USS Dolphin. 

On my way to the Russian sub I got a shot of the bow of the steam yacht Medea, which I converted to black & white.

Next up was the Russian B-39 submarine. This one is always fun to take photos in - there is so much to see, and the colors of the paint and lights make for an interesting atmosphere. The first thing you see when you enter the forward hatch is the torpedo room.

This was an officer's stateroom. The crew's quarters were bit more primitive (they got to share space with the torpedos).

In order to get from one end of the boat to the other you have to crawl through 5 of these water-tight hatchways. Definitely not for people with bad backs.

Back out in the fresh air, here's one last shot from the day, the figurehead of the HMS Surprise. 

Click here to see a few more images from my visit to the Maritime Museum of San Diego on June 12, 2011.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Gaslamp Quarter San Diego - SD-DSLR Monthly Group Shoot - June 2011

For our monthly Group Shoot this month we met in downtown San Diego for a walk around the Gaslamp Quarter. For the most part San Diego has a pretty nice downtown area, but like many downtown areas it can seem somewhat dingy, especially in the morning light. 

Heather spotted this cat in one of the store windows.

We walked across the recently opened pedestrian bridge that connects the baseball stadium area to the new Waterfront Hilton. This bridge looks like it would be great to photograph with a wide angle lens either in the evening or with a blue sky. This time of year the mornings are generally overcast in San Diego, at least along the coast.

We managed to wander into both Hilton hotels, this next shot is looking straight up at the lights in the lobby of the Gaslamp Hilton.

It was a nice morning for a walk around downtown with Heather and a bunch of friends from the photo club.

Click here to see a few more images from our walk around the Gaslamp Quarter this morning.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

The Bridge Is On Fire

Every once in a while there is a fire in one of the towers that supports the Laurel Street Bridge. This bridge, which along with the Coronado Bridge is one of the most recognizable landmarks in San Diego, crosses over State Hwy 163 and provides an entrance to the Park from Laurel Street. By the way, the bridge's actual name is the Cabrillo Bridge, but most people know it as the Laurel Street Bridge, since it's a continuation of Laurel Street as you head from the Bay up into Balboa Park.

Some time this afternoon a fire must have broken out in one of the tall columns on the Laurel Street side. The columns look like they're made of stone, but there is apparently a lot of wood inside. The firefighters were pouring water and some sort of foam down in the tower from the top. I don't have any more details other than what I saw for myself this afternoon, the San Diego press has been too busy reporting the results of the Rock N Roll Marathon to bother with this sort of news. These shots are cropped heavily, as I wasn't carrying the type of lens one would normally use for this sort of shots.


Saturday, June 4, 2011

A Mid-Morning Walk Around the San Diego Zoo

Here are a few images from this morning at the San Diego Zoo. We'll start off with this drill, who is on the way to Tiger River, where I was headed to catch the 11:30 Keeper Talk.

This is probably not something you would want to see peering at you through the grass when you're out for a walk in the jungle. Danai was waiting for the keeper to toss her another chunk of fresh beef heart.

Speaking of food, this polar bear was munching away at the salad bar . . .

. . . while the other one was out for a swim.

I didn't shoot all that much today, but you can click here for a link to several galleries from various trips to the San Diego Zoo and Wild Animal Park.

About Me

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San Diego, California, United States
About me . . . When I'm not working I like to be out exploring and photographing. I do this blog just for fun, and to be able to share these images with friends. I hope you enjoy viewing these images as much as I enjoyed creating them.

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All of the content and images on this site (c) Frank B. Baiamonte. If you would like to use any of these images please contact me via email at to discuss terms of usage. Note that images from the San Diego Zoo and Safari Park are not available for commercial usage. You can also see more on my Instagram page @frankbaiamonte.

Header image: Cibola National Wildlife Refuge, Cibola, Arizona. End image: Downtown San Diego, California skyline from Coronado Island. Profile picture: Craters of the Moon National Monument, Idaho, by Heather Baiamonte.