Galen Rowell

Galen Rowell
August 23, 1940 - August 11, 2002

Barbara Cushman Rowell
January 29, 1948 - August 11, 2002

Galen and his wife, Barbara died Sunday in a plane crash near Bishop, California.
Galen was a huge influence in my wanting to take pictures.

I met Galen through my friend Bob, and only talked to him once. It was a lavish private honoring of Galen in Berkley, California. Many high-brow people were there, including a few celebrities that talked about Galen through video. I was very moved, after seeing all of the fascinating places that he had seen.

After the show, when Bob introduced me, I asked Galen how he achieved the effect of looking right toward the sunset and still being able to see the foreground. He seemed relieved to take a break from the compliments, and took me away from the crowd to explain his invention of "Multi-stop gradient filters".
This was very interesting to me and I became much more intrigued by nature photography. I also noticed that even though, he was nearly 60, he had the voice and attitude of a teenager.

For the past few years, prior to this meeting, I looked at myself as someone who would never hike or climb mountains because I felt that because of my leg problems, it just wasn't part of my future.

A day before meeting Galen, I was helping quadriplegic patients at a medicinal ranch near Oakland California. I had a chance to talk to most of the patients and to really understand what it was like to not have the option to walk, or do about anything on your own.

I had a chance to know what it is like to not be able, and then a chance to see what you can do when you are able. And I knew I was missing too much of this world. So I started hiking.

I was just looking through some of his photography books on Saturday. On Sunday, I visited his web site, and read most everything about him and his wife Barbara, the same day they died.

I found out through a phone call from Bob today. I am deeply saddened

Monday, August 12, 2002

Galen Rowell
August 23, 1940 - August 11, 2002

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