Alberta Badlands

The Alberta Badlands feature a moon-like landscape as the elements of nature erode the soil and take us back 70 million years! With hoo-doos and parched badlands, this is where they are still finding dinosaur fossils!

A badlands (also badland) is a type of dry terrain where softer sedimentary rocks and clay-rich soils have been extensively eroded by wind and water. It can resemble malpaís, a terrain of volcanic rock. Canyons, ravines, gullies, hoodoos and other such geologicalforms are common in badlands.

The term badlands represents a consensus in North America. The Lakota called the topography “Makhóšiča“, literally bad land, while French trappers called it “les mauvaises terres à traverser” – “the bad lands to cross”. The Spanish called it tierra baldía (“waste land”) and cárcava. The term badlands is also apt: badlands contain steep slopes, loose dry soil, slick clay, and deep sand, all of which impede travel and other uses. Badlands form in semi-arid or arid regions with infrequent but intense rain-showers, sparse vegetation, and soft sediments: a recipe for massive erosion.

Some of the most famous fossil beds are found in badlands, where erosion rapidly exposes the sedimentary layers and the scant cover of vegetation makes surveying and fossil hunting relatively easy.

Coal seams are also exposed in some badlands, so historically, coal mining districts have developed in badlands areas. An example of this is the Drumheller district of the Red Deer River in Alberta, where the Atlas Coal Mines is the last of 149 mines that operated in those badlands.

Alberat Badlands, near Drumheller

Alberat Badlands, near Drumheller

Alberta Badlands, near Drumheller

Alberta Badlands, near Drumheller

Alberta Badlands, near Drumheller

Alberta Badlands, near Drumheller

Addicted to HDR Panoramas

It seems as though the rain and clouds have subsided long enough for us to actually believe that we might have a summer after all!  Naturally, I tend to get out a lot more when there’s something other than grey skies to shoot at. Vancouver has so many amazing photo opportunities, both in and out of the city.  A city skyline reflecting off of water seems to be what catches my eye the most. In doing that, I was inevitably forced to capture these stunning displays by stitching anywhere from 3 to 9 photos together.  (Even with my ultra wide angle 10-22mm lens – it just wasn’t doing the near 180 degree skylines any justice)  Adding the HDR component to my panoramas means that many of my images consist of as many as 24 exposures! These are definitely not “pics” by any definition!  Click on the thumbnails below to see some of my recent results and visit my website, www.PeteJones.ca, for more!