Field Trip: Hiking in Mauï with Micah Emily

All photos from this sponsored Field Trip are courtesy of Micah Emily. All photos were edited with the Flint & Steel presets.


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I am an explorer at heart and absolutely love to hike and travel around the globe. I have this constant urge to see the outdoors and to use my time wisely, knowing that life is just too short and our world has so much to offer.

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When I talk about travel, I don’t necessarily mean leaving my city, town, or even country. For me it’s just getting outside and stretching my legs, checking out what surrounds me at any moment.

Anywhere you choose to travel, you traverse with a new perspective that’s never been seen before. Time and weather change what we see, what we feel, and what we leave with. Our individual experiences and perspectives are so unique that you just can’t replicate them.

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So, here is my take on Maui, Hawaii; a mild tropical island filled with bare feet, big smiles, cleansing salt water, crashing waterfalls, and breaching whales. The night I left, a man named Moses relayed what remains my absolute favourite story from my time on this island.

Moses is a local who hitched a ride with us. He was carrying his harp to play for the crowds in downtown Lahaina as the sun fell low on the horizon.

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As I spoke with Moses, I came to understand that he spends his days swimming in the ocean. Not your normal dip, he takes off to reaches of half a mile to a mile offshore. Moses said he is often alone with the fish in the deep blue sea. He takes no fins, just goggles to help them see. I asked Moses to tell me the story of his greatest experience he's ever had while swimming this far out and this is what he shared.

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“I once was near a great humpback whale who was sleeping at the surface of the water. I swam alongside him until I reached the end of his tail then turned around to look back at him. I looked over at the whale in awe. It’s an amazing feeling to be out so far and swim the length of something so large. Suddenly, he took a sharp dive down, straight into the dark blue ocean below. Water swirled around me with enormous strength, pushing me back. It was so powerful! I kept my eyes on the beautiful beast as the water calmed and watched the whale disappear into the deep.”

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As a photographer, I tend to shoot in harsher light with deep shadows and contrast. The Flint and Steel Presets worked perfectly with this style and I didn’t have to change my typical settings at all.

The only fixes I made on photos was to raise or lower the exposure due to lighting conditions along with some shadow, black clipping and dehaze due to humidity. 

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Here is the gear I used: Canon 5D Mark ll, GoPro, Canon 16-35L 2.8 and Canon 50 1.4.