Ken Papaleo: X Marks the Shot: "The Beach" - Arapahoe Basin, Colorado

"The Beach" - Arapahoe Basin, Colorado

                                              "X-Shot" Information 
                                          Camera - Canon EOS 5D
                                          ISO - 100
                                          Shutter - 1/250
                                          F/stop - 16
                                          Lens - 20mm

Thousands of people come to the mountains of Colorado for spring break, but no ski resort has the "Beach" like Arapahoe Basin. The "Beach" is a stretch of the lower parking lot that backs right up to the snow with access to three chair lifts. Here skiers and boarders back in their vehicles and set up chairs, grills, and what ever else they brought with them.  By 11:00 am the activity at the "Beach" starts to pick up for lunch. That's when I showed up. It was a great day with extremely sunny skies and temperatures near 40 degrees. Traveling light with two cameras and just two lenses, a 16 - 35 zoom and a 70 - 200 zoom, I made my way down the beach.  My "X-Shot" came when I spotted a dog sitting on a large pillow in the snow. She was just enjoying the sun and was waiting for her owner to return. Using a wide angle lens worked the best to show the dog on her pillow and in the mountain surroundings.  After setting the needed exposure my shooting started, moving around the dog, looking for the best angle.  I worked the "Beach" for a couple of hours and from shooting a guy sitting in a chair on top of his car to somebody's beer stash under a truck, I was finished. Don't use auto exposure when shooting subjects in the snow on a day like this, because most likely your subject will be very dark due to the light reflection from the snow. It's best to use a reading somewhere between the bright white snow and that of your subject. 

             "X-Shot" Location Information
1. Drive time from Denver should be a little over an hour, if you don't go 
    on weekends, holidays and spring breaks (rest of March - first week of April).
2. Take I-70 from Denver to the Loveland Pass exit, go up on over the pass until
     you come to A-Basin         
3. If coming from west of the Divide, take Loveland Pass out of Dillon up to
4. To park at the "Beach" you better get there early.
5. There are some spots at the "Beach" that you can rent ahead of time.
6. Their web address is  - ph # 888-ARAPAHOE

Ken Papaleo
Colorado Photographer

All photographs for Sale, contact e-mail address below.


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Evergreen, Colorado, United States
I worked for the Rocky Mountain News for 28 years, until they went out of business. I now do freelance work, post this weekly blog, ski and play with my four grand children. I still have the love to get out and take photographs, which brings me great peace and comfort.

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