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Friday Slide Show: Pirate's Cove Share This on LinkedIn   Share This on Google   Tweet This   Forward This

6 February 2015

When they are old enough to hold their own against any possible pirates that might be anchored nearby, we like to lead our younger friends on a little hike from Lands End to the Pirate Cove.

Pirate's Cove. No dubloons, though.

It's a good ways in and down a steep enough hill to require wooden steps. Not what you'd describe as accessible. Unless you're a pirate. And you can anchor your galleon offshore. And row in on a boat close enough to jump onto the rocks with those high boots that keep the water out.

The rocky beach is small but there's plenty to explore.

You'll notice the rock cairns first of all. A challenge if there ever was one. Some made by Spanish pirates. Others by Russian pirates. The tallest ones were made, no doubt, by venture capitalists.

There's no lack of shells left behind. And the occasional bit of sea life, like a small crab overlooked by the birds that hang out on the rocks.

And if you look out to sea, you'll probably see a tanker or freighter coming through the Golden Gate. Giant ships that can rock even phantom galleons.

Or you can just find a bleached log to sit on and watch the waves crash against the rocks. There's no intermission and no usher to shoo you off even as the sun begins to set.

We shot these JPEGs with a Canon Rebel XTi and the 18-55mm kit lens in 2007. It was a spectacular day. Drama in the sky, the sea, the rocks.

We varied aperture a lot, opening up for the cairns to blur the background and shutting down for the landscapes to keep the near rocks in focus with the horizon. And we kept ISO locked at 100. So our shutter speed was usually quite fast, hitting four figures often.

We had some cropping to do in Lightroom 5. And even, believe it or not, some time with the Upright tool. Our horizons were all over the place and it was nice to get a second opinion on a couple of them.

Things sharpened up nicely with Clarity, which obliged us to open up the Shadows. Sometimes we darkened the Highlights but not always.

We also indulged in Lens Corrections to flatten out the horizontals curved by the wide angle lens.

The walk back is uphill and long enough that you always feel you're leaving too early. You'd like to start a bonfire and cook some mussels or pirate gruel. And strum a little on a guitar and sing some pirate songs about all the things you lost.

Because you are always likely to find one or two of them at the pirate's cove.

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