Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Million Dollar Highway & Silverton

 Canon 1DsIII 28-135mm lens

There are times when it becomes very difficult deciding which images to include here (or how many).  Some days it seems that it would be better just to leave the lens cap on and stay in bed and other days when everywhere you look there's something beautiful to capture.  The latter was our experience the day we drove from Ouray to Silverton driving the "Million Dollar Highway".  The sky was great, colors were great, and there was an abundance of subjects that just cried out to be photographed.

 Leica M9 Elmarit 24mm f/2.8
 Leica M9 Summarit 90mm f/2.5

The "Million Dollar Highway" takes you well past 10,700' elevation and has more twists and switch backs than either of us can remember.  It's also a well maintained road that leads you through beautiful fall colors as you travel to the small town of Silverton.  We thought Ouray was small however Silverton helped us redefine that notion.  Both towns have one thing in common, there's only one paved road with all the rest dirt/gravel.  Sitting here neither of us can remember seeing a traffic light in either town; we think the nearest one is some 30 miles north of Ouray.

Canon 1DsIII 28-135mm
 Leica M9 Elmarit 24mm f/2.8
 Leica M9 Summarit 90mm f/2.5

This was our first experience in what we'll call the western corridor of Colorado. We traveled the San Juan Skyway through Durango, Cortez, Dolores, Rico, Placerville and Ridgeway until arriving in Ouray on Friday. Saturday we drove the" Million Dollar Highway" south to Silverton passing the Idarado Mine & Treasury Tunnel into Silverton.
Silverton is at 9318' (2840 m) and was established in 1874. Silverton was a wild town where miners came to blow off steam visiting the "notorious" Blair Street with gambling, drinking, and red-light district. Many of the original buildings can still be seen today. Traveling further south leads you to Molas Pass where it's said you are breathing the cleanest air in the United States.

 Images from downtown Silverton with either the Canon 1DsIII or Leica M9

The "Million Dollar Highway", Highway 550 runs between Ridgeway and Durango and is part of the San Juan Skyway and an area one should consider visiting.

We arrived in Jackson Hole last night and have beautiful images to share from our drive through Flaming Gorge into WY which we'll share shortly.

Thanks for visiting and we hope you've enjoyed the images.

Sandy & Don

Stay tuned for a more in-depth review of Don's thoughts on the Leica Elmarit 24mm.

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