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Lodi area provides an assortment of photographic adventures

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Posted: Wednesday, May 28, 2014 12:00 am

For many travelers, a camera is never far out of reach. Visiting a new destination is a chance to create a lasting vacation memory or fine art for a gallery. Located between the Delta and foothills, Lodi has an assortment of photographic adventures to enjoy.

Lodi: Landscape, architecture, wildlife, street photography

For photographers visiting the area who would like to take great pictures without traveling more than a couple of minutes, Lodi has many opportunities to take creative photos.

Historic Downtown Lodi’s buildings with brick facades and alleys are great for architectural photographers. They are also ideal backdrops for portraits. At eye level, many people walk the streets of Downtown day and night, perfect for street photographers looking for a candid moment.

For wildlife photographers who don’t want to leave the city, the Lodi Lake Nature Area is home to many deer that are easy to find any time of day. With people walking through the habitat regularly, the does and fawns have become accustomed to visitors and won’t run away at the first click of the shutter. Early risers may even get a photograph of the few bucks that roam the nature area.

Delta: Landscape, wildlife photography

With abandoned boats, historic buildings and abundant wetlands that support flocks of birds, the Delta is a perfect destination for photographers looking for a variety of subjects. On Highway 12, 19 miles west of Lodi, the Delta Loop has a variety of scenic views of the water and marinas filled with aging boats.

The wetlands surrounding the Delta are home to thousands of birds. Egrets and great blue herons are common sights in the Delta and are easy to photograph as they wade in the shallow waters and make low, swooping flights. During the early fall the migrating Sandhill cranes descend, providing a unique opportunity to photograph thousands of the large cranes as they feed and dance.

In the greater Delta area are many buildings ravaged by time. One of the most photogenic is the Old Sugar Mill in Clarksburg. Once an industrial mill dating back to the 1930s, the red brick building is now home to several wineries. But photographers interested in architecture, history or haunting landscapes can visit the mill to capture the structure frozen in time decades ago.

Locke: Landscape, architecture, still-life photography

Also located on the Delta, Locke is a tiny town of collapsing buildings, rickety wood walkways and narrow alleys. Though the historical town with a single street only covers a small area, a photographer can get lost for hours exploring the hidden nooks and crannies between the sparse businesses and homes.

Gold Country: Landscape photography

Hidden in the foothills of California’s Gold Country is a treasure trove of photographic opportunities. The landscape is scattered with aging oak trees, rock walls built more than 150 years ago by Chinese workers and buildings crumbling on their foundations.

Take a drive along Highway 88 towards Jackson and you will find beautiful rolling hills covered in twisted oak trees, perfect for early morning and evening landscape photographs. More adventurous photographers can leave the beaten path and drive the winding roads, like Jackson Valley Road, to find abandoned barns and stone huts struggling to stand.

The foothills are also home to numerous gold mines, many of which are open for tours. Kennedy Mines Trailing Wheels Park, located in Jackson, features a large trailing wheel hidden amongst the trees and is the most photographed gold mine in the Mother Lode, according to the city of Jackson.

Camanche and Pardee reservoirs: Wildlife, landscape photography

For nature photographers, the Camanche and Pardee reservoirs offer a glimpse into the wildlife of California’s Mother Lode. Located 25 miles east of Lodi, the two reservoirs are home to wild turkeys and deer that are often found roadside. Patient and keen-eyed photographers may even spot one of the bald eagles that nest at Pardee.

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