Photo Story

Penny the 18-year old dog at The Crofting Inn Cloudcroft New Mexico

Penny the 18-year old dog at The Crofting Inn Cloudcroft New Mexico

Penny, the 18-year old dog of Cloudcroft New Mexico

My rural land photography work recently took me to Cloudcroft, New Mexico, which is about 30 minutes east of Alamogordo.  It is a small mountain town, almost like a place you might think is hiding up in the Alps in Switzerland.  The town has a lot of charm and while there I stayed at The Crofting Inn B&B.  The is where I met Penny, the 18-year old dog.

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Lake Valley Ghost Town New Mexico

Lake Valley Ghost Town New Mexico

When I heard of this ghost town near Hillsboro, New Mexico I was quite excited.  Exploring haikyo in Japan (and even here in the U.S.) was the source of some of my greatest adventures.  All of these past places were just forgotten and open for exploring.  Lake Valley Ghost Town, however, had an admission gate and a museum!  Despite this it was still interesting to see an old safe lying open in the desert, wagon wheels leaning against fences, and to listen for old voices.  It was useful having actual signs describing what each place was in a past life, even if it took a lot of mystery and imagination away.

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New Mexico True Rural Land Photography Riders on the Stormy Skies

New Mexico True Rural Land Photography Riders on the Stormy Skies

Going through my recent rural land photography archives while out in remote places in New Mexico, I was reminded of being brushed by a strong thunderstorm.  It does not rain often in the winter in the greater Albuquerque area of New Mexico, much less a thunderstorm.  Thus, my surprise at having to stay close to my Jeep Renegade Trailhawk in case a deluge broke from the sky or lightning started striking the ground.  

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New Mexico True Quarai Mission Ruins

New Mexico True Quarai Mission Ruins

I have spent a lot of time in Torrance County, New Mexico lately, mostly out at rural land properties.  Recently, I had time to do a little exploring and I saw that Quarai Mission Ruins were on the way to a land photo shoot.  Near the town of Mountainair, and part of Salina Pueblo Missions National Monument, the Quaria Mission Ruins remain the most intact.  Approaching them on foot from the small parking lot, visitor center and museum, one does not expect the towering opening once passing through its main doorway.  I marveled at all the stones and was told by the ranger on duty they were not quarried, there were enough just lying around on the ground to make that great structure!  

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Driving off road in a Jeep Renegade Trailhawk in New Mexico respectfully

Driving off road in a Jeep Renegade Trailhawk in New Mexico respectfully

I have only put 1,500 miles on my Jeep Renegade Trailhawk since I got it last month and have not taken it more than an hour outside of Albuquerque, but I have been offroad a lot already.  Nothing crazy like Moab-like trails or anything, but I have been using it as the Jeep, especially the Trailhawk version, was intended.  I really like knowing I can go anywhere, do anything with this vehicle.  However, I would not do everything you see in Jeep and other offroad vehicle commercials like driving down and across streams!  Or causing tumult by trying to "crawl" over big rocks.  To me this is destroying Nature.  I do want the Jeep to help me reach places just not possible on foot, but by staying on established fire roads and unmaintained roads.  

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Jason gets a Jeep Renegade Trailhawk!

Jason gets a Jeep Renegade Trailhawk!

In my life a lot of rather big things happen rather suddenly.  For example, two weeks before I landed in Seoul, South Korea, I had never been abroad before, I was about to attend Claremont Graduate University's PhD program in California, and it had never crossed my mind to work overseas.  Not quite as dramatic as that, but in a similar fashion, getting a SUV to better match my work and personal lifestyle here in Albuquerque, New Mexico as a professional photographer and certified drone pilot, had only fluttered across my mind a few times.  I was not even sure if it would be possible as I still had payments left on my 2013 Mazda3 sedan, which I totally loved and had zero problems with in owning it for 42,000 miles.  

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