Success with My New Blind

I recently bought a new photographer drape from Naturescapes and put it to the test today. It is ideal for photographers and is well designed for taking wildlife pictures. It is made with Camouflage material and has an opening for your lens to poke out. Camo netting allows you to look out over your lens and see everywhere except directly behind you. There is ample material for covering you and your tripod mounted camera standing or sitting. I have been anxiously awaiting a chance to try it out.

I arrived at a Sage grouse Lek this morning well before dawn and set it up. I was a little too far from the grouse for great pictures but something else happened that saved my day.

As it began to get light I saw larger flashes of white in the distance and soon was able to make out that they were Pronghorn or antelope. They have amazing vision and they picked out from a distance my blind because I had to move in it, and were spooked and ran off at first. I settled in to take photos of the birds which is what I came for anyway. Then the good stuff happened.

The birds never caught on to my presence and they strutted and danced on the Lek for several hours. The antelope circled back not once but four times and actually approached me and the blind coming in very close. The sound of the camera clicks, and I did have to swivel the lens from time to time, alerted them that something unusual was up but I believe that because they did not see a human shape they were more curious than alarmed. They were extremely curious and I was surprised how many passes they made by the blind. At one point they marched right through the strutting Sage grouse neither party taking much notice of the other.

This was a thrilling experience for me as antelope are difficult to get close to. You can take photos of them from your car fairly often but it does not have the same thrill as being up close to them in their environment. Looking forward to trying this out on more antelope and other species soon.

31 thoughts on “Success with My New Blind

  1. Super shots and information Alison. The first image has the light/dark contrast that I find irresistible. Plan to check out this new gear – sounds like something that I could put to good use.

  2. Just as I was thinking I would ask about the camera clicks you answered the question. What great luck to have them so close. The lighting wasn’t too shabby either!

    1. Yes I could not believe my luck with the light and their intense curiosity. They say when settlers first started hunting them they could lure them with a piece of cloth tied to a stick waving it in the air. I can see how that would work now. Thanks for stopping in Alli. πŸ™‚

  3. Some great photos you were able to get from you new blind! I would love to try one. So exciting being out in nature and get close to wildlife. Definitely different then getting the photos from a car! πŸ™‚

  4. Gosh, those antelope shots are excellent Alison. A blind..! Way to go. I always am pleased with your desert work and I am really looking forward to future photos now that you can shoot in, hmmm…stealth mode.

      1. I will be looking forward to seeing those shots…..How about a shot of yer blind?
        I have a vision a tent-like, camouflage structure out in the desert with a big lens poking out.

  5. Sorry I am late with commenting, Alison. Been busy and out of town. Gosh, what can I add that the others haven’t said. Only that I agree with all. Great photos and I am glad you are enjoying your blind. As you and I both know, you have to be partially hidden at least or the subjects animals and birds get spooked. I had a two-seat blind for awhile when I was shooting from a static position, but now it seems that I find myself using my Ford Escape as a blind and it works as well for me.

    1. Thanks so much Bob. πŸ™‚ Yes I know you have been busy in Big Bend. It is on my bucket list now largely because of your photos of it. I am enjoying learning all the how tos of nature photography. I wish we had more areas that car worked as a blind but unfortunately or fortunately I am having to figure out other means. Happy shooting and thanks for stopping in and commenting.

  6. These are amazing shots, Alison! I’ve tried photographing antelope but they are the flightiest of the 4-leggeds we encounter. They seem intrigued by the blind…I think that besides the clarity of these photos, the quality which makes them so alluring is that they are really candid portraits. πŸ™‚

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