Several years ago I attended a showing of top National Geographic photographs. I was totally entranced by one of them—a night photo of the Tehachapi (California) wind farm taken by Jeff Kroeze. I found/tracked down Jeff Kroeze & e-mailed him. He was kind enough to respond, even giving me the settings/how-to of his photograph. I have been hoping and looking for a similar wind farm ever since.
|Photo by Jeff Kroeze--this is MY bucket list shot to do!|
I convinced my husband to go scouting with me west of Amarillo. I thought I remembered some possibly good windmills around the little town of Bushland. We headed west and pulled off I-40 onto the side road (old Route 66). There was a country road, what we in Oklahoma call a “section line road,” heading north right into what appeared to MAYBE be a good place to return in the dark of night and "shoot windmills."
The “good” gravel road ended and a less traveled one continued on ending in a pasture. Not seeing any “no trespassing” or “keep out” signs, we pulled to end of the road. Dan & I both started taking some photos of the windmills in the distance. There was a nice fence post with barbed wire that got a few shots, too.
|The windmills across the field|
Busy with my camera & the photos, I didn’t notice an older model car pulling up until it was right beside us. Inside was an old codger cowboy. I smiled & held up my camera (my sign for “see what I’m doing here and hope its ok?”). He got out and I said, “Hi, we’re taking pics of the windmills. Is that ok? We didn’t see any signs.” “Well,” he said (draw that "well" waaay out--more like, "waaaelll") “this here’s private property. Part of the Bush Estate—The Frying Pan Ranch.” I said I hadn’t seen a sign. He said, “Well, there’s one back there on that gate that’s in the ditch.” “In the ditch?” I said (as in, like, “duh, hello, sorry I didn’t look in the ditch for the sign.”). Dan told him we’d leave, but he said, “Seeing as you’re not causin’ any trouble, I trust ya—go on and take yer pictures.”
And the cowboy codger drove away . . .
|I didn't climb over the fence. THAT would have been trespassing!|
|I find it interesting that this ranch was originally owned by a barbed wire creator & that I was fascinated with the barbed wire!|
|Aw heck. There's too many power lines. Gotta find another wind farm!|
(Look up the Frying Pan Ranch/Bush Estate for some interesting history on this part of the country!)