This photograph almost cost $4,000! The wind was so strong atop Hawk Hill this morning at sunrise that it tried to push my camera and tripod over the cliff. The fall would’ve been about 25 feet, far enough I think that the heavy end of the rig would’ve hit first. At just the wrong angle, BAM, busted lens mount on D700, glass in 24-70 f/2.8 lens, and so on. If the tripod and head had also suffered damage, it would’ve been a very unhappy call to my insurance company.
Fortunately, the reflexes in the old dog are still quite keen in this situation, and as the tripod was about halfway over the railing I caught one of the legs to keep up the whole thing from going over. A close call! I’ve since come up with a scheme to use my backpack and a velcro strap as an anchor the next time the wind is up.
A few moments later, after my heart had slowed down, the clouds were pretty fantastic and I made a 7-shot panorama that I expect will be quite nice indeed after some work in Photoshop to assemble the final image.