My Visit to the USA.

(The Journey Home)

[Mountains] [Valley] [Extinct Volcano?] My trip back began early, about 8:30am. I was to take two flights, stopping off at Chicago to change planes. These three pictures were all taken over WA, Oregon or Idaho (difficult to remember now) on the first leg of the journey at about 27000ft (here's a cool map of the USA for reference [526x388 21K GIF]). They show a superb mountain scene, a very clearly photographed river valley and what I think is an extinct volcano. Without a doubt, much of the scenery I saw on this flight was breathtaking, but the best was yet to come. Btw, the three images are all JPG files: 540x808 183K, 541x756 178K and 543x606 131K.

[The Missouri
River Delta]

This part of the journey without doubt provided one of the most spectacular sights I've ever seen: a huge section of the Missouri river delta was laid out below, visible for hundreds of miles. What a fantastic sight! The image above is a very carefully constructed panorama; ordinary panoramas - like the NOA showroom image - usually consist of separate photos taken from the same spot, with a rotation causing the different viewpoints. But the pictures that made up this panorama were all taken whilst facing the same direction along a moving path (if you think about it, what happens is that the foreground scenery changes rapidly, whilst the distant horizon scenery remains much the same).

As a result, the perspective is not correct to make an ordinary panorama, so to make this montage I used multiple bits of each photo (one side effect is the unavoidable repetition of part of the river on the horizon). I could have used a paint package to alter the colouring to make the image edges less visible, but I decided not to. As with the NOA showroom panorama, the original images were reduced in size (by 33% in this case) and then carefully combined, but this was a far harder task. If you look at the far right of the panorama (download the 'fifth image' below for a better view), you can gain an idea of how wide a vista was on view by looking at how small the fields appear to be (and remember those fields are huge at ground level!). If you want to download the full size separate images (for a closer look perhaps), then you can. Here they are, from left to right in sequence:

First Image (552x808 120K JPG)

Second Image (542x808 115K JPG)

Third Image (544x808 115K JPG)

Fourth Image (543x808 120K JPG)

Fifth Image (546x808 123K JPG)

Incidentally, if you download these pictures and view them in a single window quickly in sequence, you can get a good idea of what I was seeing, rather like a short movie.

[Extinct Volcano?] (539x807 139K JPG) This was taken just before landing in Chicago. My grud that runway is close to the highway! 8| It must scare the heck out of people driving underneath a plane that's just landing. Yes, it was raining in Chicago that day. I stayed at the airport for about 90 minutes before my second flight back to the UK. The journey back was overnight, so I took no more pictures. Arriving in London, I then caught a train back to Scotland and finally a bus home. Overall, returning home took me 24 hours non-stop travel. One thing I know for sure now: it's travelling West to East that mucks up your body clock! I didn't recover to a normal sleep pattern for about a week. :D

A final note: I took many more pictures on my trip than are shown on these pages (you can probably tell that from the file names), but I wasn't sure if people would be that interested in the others. If you think I should add some of the other pictures, then email me.

Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed the tour. Next time, I'll take a movie camera and so will be able to add MPG and sound files to my WWW report.

Bye! :)


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