Sometimes, despite having your equipment ready and being in a great location the image is a total dog. Back in 2010 I was working “near” Salt Lake City in that SLC was the closest city, being only three hours or so away. The next closest city was Denver, which was five hours. I’d never had the chance to photograph bison in the wild before so one weekend I drove to Salt Lake City and went to Antelope Island State Park, which has bison herd along with the Pronghorn Antelope it’s named for. As I was leaving the island I stopped along the causeway to photograph wading birds in the lake. They were feeding on brine shrimp, the only life the lake supports. The lake was shallow at this point and there were hundreds of birds, reflected in the smooth waters, only a few inches deep with the mountains reflected as well.
Sound’s perfect right? Well it was. Ok well not perfect, there was a great deal of atmospheric interference, being an August afternoon in Utah. I could have used live view. I could have checked the images to make sure they were in focus. ANY of them were in focus. I took nearly 100 images of the wading birds, not a single one is sharp.
So let that be a lesson to me, and perhaps to you too. Just because it works through the viewfinder doesn’t give you an excuse in the modern age to not check the image before you drive away.