I love to photograph lighthouses and traveling on a cruise ship is a great way to see lots of lighthouses from the water. When the lighthouse is near a port it is easy for me to identify the lighthouse and look up information for it online. The challenge becomes when the ship is not near a port and I see a lighthouse in the distance.
The lighthouse above was photographed after the cruise ship had left the port of Vancouver. We had been traveling for about 2 hours when I saw this cute little light just outside the window. I grabbed my camera and got a few photos but I had no idea where we were or the name of the lighthouse. Now was the time to put my detective skills to work!
Getting a Closer Look
The square tower and white railing on the lighthouse would be good clues as I looked at lighthouse photos.
Zooming out for Further Clues
Next, I zoomed out for a long shot to see if the surroundings would give me any clues. I had been so focused on the lighthouse at first I missed the beautiful mountain peaks in the background. What a glorious site! Still I wasn't sure which mountain I was viewing and at this point I wasn't sure if we were off the coast of Canada or the USA.
Doing a Bit of Research
- First I posted my long shot photo on Facebook and asked friends for help. I got various different guesses on the name of the mountain from Mt. Rainier to Mt Hood to Mt Baker. These gave me some food for thought and starting points for my search.
- I first tried to do a search for lighthouses off the coast south of Vancouver. In studying the maps I had found that the ship had gone down the Inside passage from Vancouver to near Seattle before turning out to sea. I first searched the Canadian lighthouses and found some that looking very close to the lighthouse in my photos, but as I zoomed in on each lighthouse I found something just a bit different so I continued my search.
- Since several people had identified the mountain as being in Washington state, I decided to search for lighthouses off the Washington coast. Again, I found lots of lighthouses along that Inside passage but none were exactly like my lighthouse.
- Finally I decided to do a search of "Washington lighthouses with mountain in background." I thought it was a long shot but then I've found most everything is available somewhere online. In this search I was successful, someone else had posted a photo online almost identical to mine with the lighthouse and the mountain in the background. From this photo I was able to go further and find more information on both the lighthouse and mountain.
Patos Island Lighthouse
Art from my Photographs
Patos Island Lighthouse Wood Wall Art by lighthouseenthusiast
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