• Yes, this is the setting almost full-moon at a 19mm wide-angle. I waited for the clouds to move away so it would show up better in this picture.
  • The setting shadow of the Earth. It drops as the sun rises behind the camera.
  • This one is the size of a bowling ball, so 'Bowling Ball Beach' is not the perfect name.
  • Sunset with a medium tide is a good time to come here, but the rising sun behind me cast some nice light so show extra-fine detail on the rocks.
  • A calm morning made the pool nice and still. So the reflections were good.
  • The tide was -1ft (very low), so only a few rocks were in water. The rest were high and dry! A +2-3ft tide is best here.
  • There are dozens of these rocks to the left of the frame. They were dry so I left them out of the picture.
  • I think that Lady Gaga climbed out of this one in her "Bad Romance" video!
  • Wow!! - ǝuoƃ
  • Most amazing..... Lovvve it... Blows me away completely... :) - 2k Photography
  • i like this one :) - tropicaLiving - Jessy Eykendorp
  • great textures - tropicaLiving - Jessy Eykendorp

Orbs of Mystery #1 - Mendocino County, California

Newer Older

(eerie music playing..)
Could these 'coccoons' have been left by extraterrestrials planning the domination of our planet?
Read 'the story' below to discover the truth! No HDR.

Free wallpaper for over 100 of my images in 6 different screen sizes is now available!

See the 1200 pixel version!

Also, my pictures are featured on the front page of the newly redesigned
The state Gov. of California website
. Have a look! It is Flash with my pics cut into layers for a 3-d slideshow. If you are into building apps, the State has opened up lots of data to the public, so check it out!

---------------------------------------------------------------------- ---------
Settings etc.:
---------------------------------------------------------------------- ---------

Canon 5D Mark II
Canon 17-40L @19
5-second exposure @F14
LEE soft ND grad (100x150mm - 4x6in) 0.9
+ Singh-ray reverse soft edge grad 0.9
(I'm not sure about the singh-ray filter. I had to desaturate the blue channel in the sky
to make it look natural. The sky looked too blue in the camera compared to my eye.
Also, the edge of the grad is too hard, despite it being called a soft grad.)
Lee foundation kit filter holder with Lee 77mm adapter ring
No polarizer.
ISO 50
RAW file processed with Capture One by Phase One
TIFF file processed with Photoshop

---------------------------------------------------------------------- ------------
The Story
---------------------------------------------------------------------- ------------

Okay, well actually these 2-3 ft tall (1m) rounded rocks were embedded in sandstone layers. Then, as the soft layers eroded, the harder sections separated and were eroded by the sea into these round shapes. Some were round even while embedded in the sandstone layer, so they must have been formed and then were locked up in the layers and released in place in more recent times. So they have been eroded twice at least! I could not find out how they originally became round.

Here is a good explanation showing some of these rocks still embedded in the sandstone layers. There is even a video in there.


This is a -1.0 ft low tide, and I used the reflective water as best I could. A medium tide (+2/+3 ft (1m) is best here for showing the water moving through the many dozens of round rocks. It is called 'Bowling Ball Beach' but these are far too big to be rolled around by hand. Actually the smallest round rock is the size of a bowling ball. See the notes above.

There was a perfect medium tide at sunset on the three nights I was here, but not a cloud was in the sky. So I came out at sunrise when there were a few clouds. They were gone an hour later, so I lucked out!

These are similar to the Moeraki Builders of New Zealand, but there are more of them here and they are more densly packed. And they look just as good!

The map shows exactly where this is. It is an easy 1/2 mile hike from a small turnout just north of Schooner Gulch. Once you get to the cliff, there is a path with wood boards tied together with steel cable. The hill has eroded under the last part of the 'stairs', so you have to climb down, almost like on a very shaky ladder!

Other stuff

See my Flickr profile for a link to

my newly designed website.

My landscape photography e-book is up to 310 pages and is ready for a final edit. then I'll write my newsletter again. (The book is about how to learn landscape photography from the old masters of painting.) It is in pdf format, but the conversion to ePub (iPad) is looking good too.

Go to my Flickr profile for small group workshop information and to sign up for my free monthly newsletter. In the newsletter, I will answer questions and talk about theories and techniques. No spam will be sent!

Follow me on Twitter!


Google Earth

Simply the best way to scout out locations that there is. You can see sun angles and pre-visualize light under lots of different conditions. Sometimes you can actually pre-compose your shots! This has saved me many thousands of vertical feet of climbing by avoiding spots with blocked views etc.

Satellite imagery (choose 'National' for a local US region or use your fave website)

Tide charting and preditions: (chose your area in US, other countries have similar websites)

Wave Heights (I choose 'North Pacific from Global')
Or Here:

Photos of every inch of the California coastline from a small plane. Excellent for close in detailed views.



LB RIDES BIKES, Vainsang, and 1408 other people added this photo to their favorites.

View 20 more comments

  1. Konabish ~ Greg Bishop 33 months ago | reply

    eerie music playing, indeed. i'll love it when we can have the music play as you click on the photo! one of the top shots i've seen of bbb!

  2. Lauris Reiniks 32 months ago | reply

    Great shot! I think you really can win a "Waterscape" photo contest on photorush.com

  3. Krasne oci 30 months ago | reply

    Spectacular. Your photos are simply breathtaking.

  4. L.U.C.I.O. 29 months ago | reply

    Wonderfull shot

  5. CanMan90 28 months ago | reply

    Beautiful sea scene , the reflections are amazing as is the whole Photo !!

  6. fauaad 22 months ago | reply


    This guy is passing off your shot as his own. I suggest you report him to facebook.

  7. Adi Faran 21 months ago | reply

    Please consider adding your beautiful photo to our group - Majestic In Nature, P1/A5!
    Also we would love to invite you to join our group!

    POST 1 – AWARD 5 others in group pool

  8. Buzzard2001 20 months ago | reply

    Please accept this Invitation to add
    your outstanding work to:
    Flickrs Finest Images - Level 1 (P1/A5)
    You are invited to add your picture to:
    Flickrs Finest Images
    Flickrs Finest Images (Post 1 - Award 5)
    Sweeper Active

  9. Ranjan rai 18 months ago | reply

    He... this image is great image...........

  10. jbnuthatch 17 months ago | reply

    Love the colors and the gleam on the rocks!

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