Aviation weather services do not issue forecasts based on the viability of aerial photography. They indicate cloud levels and general visibility amounts, with a cap on the high end of forecasted visibility. For the USA, the high end of forecasts is either 6 or 10 miles, depending on the type. If visibility is 11 miles or 75 miles, the forecast will say 6+. Therefore, it is impossible to get a concrete answer on smog levels. Rather, it is up to me to deduce, based on wind speed, direction, upstream sources, terrain, and all the rest whether or not the weather will be crap.
Most of time, I just look out the window. That’s all well and good, except I can’t look over the ridge behind the house to see what is going on in that neck of the woods.
Yet again, I planned to go to Montserrat, and yet again, there was an inversion on the other side of the hill, though this time it was much lower. When life throws you lemons, make lemonade. I decided to photograph the terrain that was in clear air above the terrain, known as the “Pre-Pyrenees.”
One cannot exactly call them foothills, as they can be quite severe, and sometimes as tall as the Pyrenees themselves. Instead, this somewhat lower section of the high terrain around here geologically presents itself very differently, so in effect, it’s a different zone of geography. Once in the Pyrenees proper, things take on a more standard perspective of ruggedly tall mountains with a timberline.
I noted while flying through this area that it was a combination of North Carolina, Virginia, and Wyoming, an intriguing mix of deciduous trees with almost Appalachian landforms, reverting to pine trees and Western US appearances. My wife aptly noted that not a lot of people have had a chance to see all of those places and notice the correlation from an airplane….
Pedraforca. A local pilot told me that 100% of the time, there is bad turbulence around this thing. 100% of the time I have flown near it, the air is still. Nonetheless, I have an attraction to vertical rock.