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Roger Riordan: Trip to Kings Canyon 1960

The westernmost point of the George Gill Range was Carmichael's Crag. This was an outlier of the plateau with a steep escarpment all round. We set off after lunch, and reached it about 4PM. We left our vehicle in the scrub at the bottom of the escarpment and proceeded to climb it. It was fairly steep, with a lot of loose rock, but nothing to worry about. When we got to the top it was just before sunset so we sat on the top and watched the sun go down, and then set off down again in the fading light to find our car and return to camp.

My camera, which I had bought for the '59 trip, was a Hasselblad 500C - one of the first SLR cameras, which took 120 film, and cost a fortune. For this trip I bought a Hasselblad SWC 21mm wide angle camera, using the same backs, and a Polaroid filter.

The filter is responsible for the extreme contrast between the white dead trees and the deep blue sky in several of these photos (especially "Carmichael's Crag", which was taken on the SWC). It gives a striking effect, but it does seem rather artificial. Despite it's price the camera was extremely primitive by today's standards - it weighed a ton, the film was very expensive, there were no zoom lenses so you had to be swapping heavy lenses all the time, it had to be focussed manually, and there was no automatic exposure control.

Coming down

Carmichaels Crag

Sunset

The girls

More cliffs

Above Reedies

Climbing the Crag

Sunset

Cliffs

And more

 © Roger Riordan 2004-2018