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O beautiful for heroes proved in liberating strife

Manny and I were on the National Mall in Washington D.C. near the U.S. Capital Building when we realized that the sunset that evening was going to be absolutely stunning. We started walking as fast as we could (pulling our rolling camera backpacks behind us), towards the Washington Monument. I spotted a cab driving down the National Mall and flagged him. He drove us over to the grassy knoll just across the street from the Monument. I paid the driver and he helped us get our bags out of the taxi's trunk. We scrambled up the hill, setup our tripods and started shooting before this spectacular sunset had vanished. You will never realize how quickly the sun sets unless you take the time to watch one.

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Reader Comments (2)

Greg, how do you get past the Tripod Police? Did you just have good luck, or did you do something special that you can share?

May 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMarcelo

Hey Marcelo,

I wasn't a problem. We used our tripods all over town and didn't get stopped once. The exception would be at most of the memorial sites. The park rangers will not let you setup a tripod on the marble floor of the Lincoln or Jefferson Memorials nor on the stone floors of the Vietnam, Korean or World War II Memorials. However I was able to use my Gorillapod at several of the Memorials. Since I was generally wrapping the Gorillapod to the metal railing surrounding the memorials the Park Rangers allowed it after my explaining that it has rubber feet and grip rings and not metal spikes so we were not damaging any surfaces. Also there was no chance of anyone tripping since the Gorillapod was not on the floor.

Bottom line: I think if you use good judgement in placing your tripod, you won't be bothered. Put it on a heavily traveled path and you'll be asked to leave. The rules are different for Capital Hill. You must have a permit to use a tripod at any time and they strictly and promptly enforce the rules.

Hope this helps,


May 3, 2010 | Registered CommenterGreg Jones

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