黄石/犹他秋冬旅行记录

引言

一次非常即兴的秋日黄石旅行计划,很感谢上帝一切都算顺利,经历了很多新的困难和挑战,所以特别在此记录一下方便大家参考。

时间

由于黄石公园大部分公路可能在下雪后就封路,很多园内的设施也会在10月陆续关闭,所以如果打算在10月以后去黄石,请一定参考这个网站,获得目前最新的路况,用于安排计划。由于十月可能已经开始下雪,黄石的路也可能会要求雪胎,所以租车可能需要考虑。

这次公园旅行最大的体会之一,就是真的需要提前给每个公园打电话,关于路况,注意事项,还有何时公园会满。在犹他本来想去一个国家公园,但是早上11点到达的时候却看见公园已经满员的情况,这些在网上是很难查到的。

注意不同季节天黑的时间也有变化,夏季天黑的晚,大概9点多还没天黑,在园内的游玩时间会比较充裕。10月天黑时间提早到了7点,天黑以后园内没有照明,开车会比较困难。

本人的这次行程是2021年10月9号周六早上6点出发,10月13日晚上12点返回。期间经历了黄石今冬第一场雪。

出行必备

好的户外徒步鞋,推荐哥伦比亚的。
小的旅行电热水壶(amazon)烧水超级快。
对讲机(amazon),公园内手机不给力,这东西超级好用。
保温瓶
电饭煲
一件保暖外套,比较厚的。
如果去的时间更晚,建议带手套。

同时,黄石公园有自己的app,值得推荐。里面可以看当前路况,还有最最重要的Old Faithful 间歇泉的下次喷发时间。

关于网络,公园内部基本没有无线网络,但是各个门附近还是会有信号的。所以强烈建议在手机上下载黄石附近的离线Google map,这样就算没有网络,在园内搜索地址开车也很方便。

租车这次体会特别大,现在的新车cruise control 都带前车跟随功能,开长途定速以后跟车都不需要踩刹车油门,轻松很多。

参观计划

第一天

10/9/2021 9:00am 盐湖城机场取车
10/9/2021 10:00am to 11:00am 盐湖城中国超市采购几天的食品,主要是泡面,蔬菜。强烈推荐他们家的大包子还有越南三明治面包,好吃便宜,非常适合旅行。

附近还有很多餐馆,适合一开始补货


10/9/2021 11:00am to 4:00pm 开车前往黄石西门。
10/9/2021 4:00pm to 6:50pm 参观大棱镜温泉区,老忠实喷泉。本来想等老忠实喷发,但是到了附近老忠实旅店发现下次喷发在天黑以后,所以作罢。
10/9/2021 7:00pm 在Crosswinds Inn入住。

第一天夕阳的时候赶到老忠实,看到了一只水牛也在等喷发。可惜下次喷发是7:40pm,已经天黑,我们只能提前离开。
第一天总结
首日回顾,其实已经相当的顺利。如果是夏天出发天黑的晚,可以选择走黄石公园南门,这样可以经过Jackson town并从大提顿进入黄石,可以沿路看看大提顿的风光。这样的路线从盐湖城出发大概需要6小时可以到达黄石公园南门。然后从南门进入黄石公园,首先去老忠实碰碰运气,如果几十分钟喷发那就等,如果刚喷过,时间间隔大约90分钟,可以考虑走一走老忠实附近的步道,有很多漂亮的间歇泉景点。不过记得时间计算好,提早折返回来看老忠实喷发。

秋冬来黄石,优点是人少一些,拍照会有更空旷的感觉。缺点是由于气温过低,温泉区会有很多水蒸气,导致观赏效果会差一些。

不需要在到达西黄石之前加油,如果油够的话。西黄石地方的油价反而比路上会低。

Crosswoods Inn地段很好,也提供不错的早餐,还有自己的天然温泉泳池。值得推荐入住。

第二天

黄石公园的路线呈8字形,这一天全天打算参观下8字的部分。基本路线就是开车到对应的景点处,下来走路看看。

10/10/2021 8:00am 从西门入园,一路往北开,前往Norris Geyser。
10/10/2021 9:30am – 10:30am 到达Norris Geyser停车场,绕Norris Geyser 步行道参观。

Norris 真的是一片非常科幻的地方,当你跨过门帘看到整个平原的时候,仿佛进入了另一个空间。

Norris Geyser步道建议路线是从入口下来时候先走右手边一个边路,可以从右侧观看沸腾的温泉。走到尽头后身后树丛里还有一个非常漂亮的湖适合拍照。之后可以返回来再走主步道参观Norris Geyser。

这个镜湖左右对称,相当漂亮。

10/10/2021 11:00 am 启程从黄石公园8字中间的公路穿越到公园东岸。在Canyon Village上洗手间,吃饭。

Canyon villege的必经之路上还碰巧看到了水牛群在休息。


10/10/2021 12:30pm 离开Canyon Village,开车前往黄石瀑布景点。

黄石公园东岸有数个观赏黄石瀑布的地方。既有开车可以停靠,下来走几分钟就可以看到瀑布的瞭望点,也有可以步行半小时左右可以近距离观察的步道。由于已经近距离观赏过优胜美地的壮美瀑布,黄石瀑布仅挑了几个不错的地方停车观赏。推荐Lookout point,既可以看到瀑布,也可以看到延绵的山谷。旁边的步道也可以走到瀑布下方近距离观赏。

Lookout point可以找到明信片的景观。旁边的步道可以下到瀑布下。远处瀑布顶是Brink of the Lower Falls

如果想从瀑布顶看水飞流直下,请先停靠在Brink of the Lower Falls。本人没有在瀑布花太多时间,继续在东线往南开。

10/10/2021 2:00pm-3:00pm 参观Mud Volcano。再到达Mud Volcano之前,还有一座石桥路过几个巨大的硫磺温泉,可以考虑停下呼吸几口硫磺蒸汽感受一下。

Mud Volcano原本是普通温泉,但是后来由于人工原因导致泥沙塌陷,形成了一大块芝麻糊一样的温泉,沸腾度相当厉害。

沸腾的泥浆,蒸汽中满是硫磺味

10/10/2021 4:00pm-5:00pm 参观West Thumb Geyser。如果时间有限,其实黄石湖边都不需要停靠参观,直奔West Thumb Geyser就好。因为它就坐落在黄石湖边,又有温泉又有湖景,一举两得。

West Thumb Gyeser有数个特别清澈的温泉,即便在秋冬由于湖风,也很少蒸汽遮挡,可以一边欣赏碧蓝清澈的泉水,也可以远眺黄石湖景。
在West Thumb还遇到一群母驯鹿休息,大家都驻足拍照

10/10/2021 5:00pm 到达Old Faithful 碰运气,结果完美错过了每隔90分钟一次的喷发,下一次喷发是在5:50左右。利用时间走了一下周围的步道,发现也是十分美丽,其实大可以多花时间走走,不过为了赶上老忠实天黑前最后一次喷发,只好早早折返。

Old faithful 周围的步道也有很多间歇喷泉,比如这个鼓鼓的,其实喷水可以高达20米,但是它喷发的时间不固定,中间可能间隔十几个小时甚至几天。结果我们当天回到老忠实附近等待的时候,还有幸看到了它的喷发。结果却是感觉这个喷发效果要不老忠实高不少。
老忠实得名,就是因为它每隔90分钟(左右)喷发水柱一次差不多5分钟,十分准时(faithful)。周围有很多作为可以坐着等候。秋冬位置都坐不满。感觉夏季会围绕很多人。推荐观赏点就是这个牌子方向的座位,比较空旷,运气好还可以看到左侧高地其他温泉的喷发。

10/10/2021 6:00pm 逛老忠实旅馆,一个全木质的漂亮旅馆。得知10/10号是里面礼品商店冬季前最后一天营业,买到一些打折纪念品,开心哈哈。
买完纪念品,就赶着夕阳回到西黄石旅馆了。

第二天总结
算是比较紧的一天,如果去过优胜美地走过瀑布步道,可以考虑只是在黄石瀑布打卡就好,Canyon Village也不用停留太久。这样可以留出时间更完整的走一下老忠实附近的步道,还可以从不同角度看老忠实喷发两次。

第三天

今天主要是沿黄石八字往北去往Mammoth Hot Spring area,据说早上这边会有很多动物。然后计划沿北边公路往东开往Lamar Valley 观赏动物。

10/11/2021 7:30am 从西黄石出发,驱车一小时前往Mammoth Hot Spring。

天气预报已经报道有雪,于是一路往北的路程就感受到了天气的变化,开过Norris的时候地上已经开始积雪了。路上也开始陆陆续续看到打滑停在路边的车。我刹车也感受到了滑行的感觉,一路慢慢悠悠才开到了Mammoth。很开心居然又碰到一群麋鹿路过休息。这里还有一只雄鹿。

Mammoth在冬季的大雪中又别有一番景色,周围也有步道,可以花很多时间参观。

一只大麋鹿带着家眷路过此地,休息了一个中午。雄鹿的鹿角其实生长非常快,一般每年都会脱落,然后一年就会一直长。大的鹿角说明本身很健康,所以也是力量的象征。
这雄鹿有至少11个后宫,后来看了Disney+上黄石动物纪录片,才知道雄鹿相争,胜利者获得对方全部配偶。自然也是满残酷的。。。。
白雪里的Mammoth又是一番景色
Mammoth步道沿山坡而上,在白雪当中仿佛仙境。

10/11/2021 12:00pm 想到已经看了这么多动物,试了试Lamar的路发现雪完全没有铲,于是折返

10/11/2021 1:00pm 不幸得知之前从西黄石北上的道路由于积雪已经封了,要回到西黄石只能绕公园外的U形公路,也就是本来走一个矩形一边的路程变成了走其余3边。。。 一下子把1小时的路程加到3小时。

出北门的山脚下还看见一只雄鹿~看角就知道弱一些
北边出来也有一个town,设施都很丰富,路上也有很壮丽的山脉。下次可以考虑住北边。

还好这远路前半段相当好开,只是后半段又进入山路地上的雪也没有干净,开着又有些紧张。还好前方有一辆拖车也是同路一直开路。

最后40分钟路况都这样,还好在纽约开过冬天~

10/11/2021 7:00pm 顺利完成远路,回到西黄石,一天经过秋冬变化的旅行顺利结束。感谢老妈煮了一锅面,大家吃的很开心。

大雪吃热汤,简直无敌
第三天总结
黄石下雪真不是闹着玩的。如果是大雪,所有公园的路都会封闭,铲雪基本需要等到雪停以后才可以进行。所以雪天去黄石感觉并不划算。如果游玩当天下雪的话,路线很可能中断导致行程受影响。所以秋冬去黄石还是建议在十月之前,避免下雪。

第四天

由于大雪未停,早上睡了个懒觉。然后去邮局邮寄了明信片。顺路去了一下西黄石的visitor center问了一下路况,发现整个公园的积雪还没有清理干净。于是中午11点启程返回盐湖城。

冬天泡温泉那可是别有一番滋味,沿路在Idaho和Utah州都有很多值得一去的自然温泉,初冬人不多可以尝试。带着家人的话还是找一些设施比较完善的靠谱。

推荐Lava Hot Spring,位于Idaho州,盐湖城和西黄石一半的位置,秋冬这里白雪环绕,但却有地热温泉,应该是十分神奇的体验。但是要注意它周二下午闭馆,晚上5点多才开放。所以建议打算去的时间打电话确认一下。

如果Lava Hot Spring关门,也可以考虑犹他州的一个温泉Crystal Hot Spring,也是一个天然温泉。水中盐分较高,所以游泳很容易浮在水上。游泳还是闭着眼睛比较好哈哈。

来这些温泉,泳衣肯定是必须,但是也要记得带毛巾,要不洗澡会麻烦。由于盐水,所以带一些淡水漱口也很重要。

水温挺好,靠边有热水出水口,站在附近很舒服。
再冷一些感觉会更爽一些哈哈

此外,盐湖城附近还有世界上独一无二的温泉潜水点Homestead Crater。可以游泳,浮潜,水肺潜水。如果冬天来犹他滑雪,同伴和自己又有PADI license,可以一试。水里没有鱼啦,不过应该算一个不错的体验。至少拍照满分。

晚上入住了盐湖城附近的La Quinta Inn,环境感觉一般,早餐也不怎么样。不过用来过夜算是可以。

第五天

这一天晚上11点的飞机回家,所以有一整天在盐湖城。想着再去看看风格完全不同的地貌。看着天气还是不错,于是打算去周围最近的Arches National Park走走。这个国家公园周围还有Canyonlands National Park等公园 (后来感觉还好周围有其他的)。车程从盐湖城大约3.5小时。

也考虑过Zion,但是感觉4个多小时当天来回太拼。不如下次从Las Vegas开车两小时前往。而且冬天去的话涉水步道应该非常难走,还是夏天再去吧。

10/13/2021 8:00am 出发前往Arches National Park。伴随着清晨的阳光我们出发。这条路相当好开,都是直路。加上Nissan Rouge 新版的自动前车跟随功能,迎着阳光就来到了公园。途中间Price市有walmart super center,可以加油和休息。

真的是一马平川

结果早上11点到达Arches发现,居然Park full!是的,原来还有所谓的Park满员。听周围骑车的旅客说,Arches要早上7点到才能顺利入园。感觉大家疫情期间户外热情真的好高。。。所以只好在门口打卡啦。

Arches里面有几个短途步道还是不错的。其实走走拍照几个小时根本不够。

绕了一圈出来。。。

还好周围还有Canyonlands National Park,没有full。结果证明Canyonlands 真的也是非常赞,而且十分适合short trip。一路往山上开,可以来到Canyonlands,这里有很好的峡谷view,也有Mesa Arch,是一个在山顶的风化石拱,也是犹他州很有特色的地貌了。在平顶山的山顶眺望峡谷也有大峡谷公园的感觉。Canyonlands上我们参观了visitor center附近的一块眺望处,还有令人震惊的Mesa Arch。时间就到下午两点多了,正好往回开。所以还好没有去Arches National Park,否则感觉时间根本不够。

vistor center附近就有很好的view,非常壮观
好多人排队打卡拍照,建议站在中间,可以把自己拍成眼睛的瞳孔。然后Arch的右手边其实人不多,但是也可以安全的拍到很好的view哦。
cong
Arch里面可以看到远处的风景,仿佛一个眼睛。右侧没有人排队拍照,所以可以慢慢观察。
趴在右侧可以拍到不错的view

下午两点多就开车返回啦~晚上7点多到达,在妈妈厨房吃了一顿川菜,味道蛮不错。

找了一下才找到,不过就在去市政中心的路上。

吃完晚饭还有时间,本来想去Temple Square看看建筑。结果发现大教堂在装修,一直要到2024年才会再开放。所以还好最后一天没有安排游历盐湖城市内,否则真的看得不会很多。

跟着GPS走绕了好久也没有发现适合停车的地方,后来仔细一看发现在装修。

9点来到机场还车,发现盐湖城国际机场人还是蛮多的。最后顺利回家啦~~

第五日总结
除了上网查,真的要多问国家公园电话,确认各种计划是否可行。公园满员,建筑维修,都是很难及时获得更新的消息。
如果行程上很多人可以开车,其实第四天可以多开一些到Moab,就在Arches National Park旁边,可以让第二天很早进入公园游玩。
如果夏天考虑去Zion,也可以考虑安排返程地点为Las Vegas,这样避免去Zion还要开车4小时返回盐湖城。当然,异地还车的cost也要考虑啦

花销

此次旅行不算机票,住宿,吃饭,租车,加油,购买纪念品,平均每人开销480美金。不算太累的行程,吃的也比较爽。

改进

鱼与熊掌不能兼得。想顺利的玩黄石,那就尽量8月到9月来,没有雪,第一次来在黄石住3晚足够cover黄石出色的风景。
如果想冬日泡温泉,那还是归入犹他滑雪的计划里面吧。总的来说秋冬来黄石变数比较大,一场风雪可能你就进不了园。

建议如果要去犹他州国家公园,住宿可以考虑比较靠近公园的地方,可以保证入园,多一些时间看风景。例如Canyonlands这个和天空如此接近的公园,其实蛮适合camping,晚上无云一定可以看到一大片星河。日落日出在Mesa Arch应该也可以有很漂亮的风景。

总结

这次疫情后第一次飞机旅行,自己一个人计划安排,有很多考虑不周的地方。很感谢家人各司其职,由于第一天去了华人超市采购,还有电热水壶,整个行程吃的很开心,所以心情也好很多。虽然面对了很多绕路,关门,公园爆满的突发情况,还是非常轻松的欣赏了黄石主要的风景,还有特别的红色的峡谷地貌。真真正正感受到了上帝在这个地上神奇的创造。此外也感受到国家公园建设上的用心,早在19世纪美国就想到了将黄石作为国家公园保护起来。公园里面的道路设计,开车都很放松,不过雪天除雪真的还蛮想吐槽的。进出公园可以很明显感受到公园外州政府的道路会被维护的很干净,但是进入公园的道路除雪就会慢很多。

虽然遇到了各种小插曲和挑战,我们还是很顺利的完成了这次突然的旅行,两天多在黄石公园领略了春夏秋冬四季的风光,近距离看到了水牛和麋鹿,确实是很难再现的一次体验。如果要我说,真的是要感谢上帝的保守~

撰写这篇游记的当天,和一位主内的朋友聊天,体会到我们生命中真的有很多uncertainties,人在掌控这些突发状况的时候真的会很心力交瘁。但是有faith,学会把不能掌控的交给上帝,有时候一些你没有计划到的岔路也许正好才是对你好的道路。就像我们有信心Old Faith会准时喷发,我们就可以以这个faith为中心,计划到周围的景点走走看看,很多东西就可以以我们相信它的准时而展开,而我们也不需要忐忑害怕错过,从而导致没有办法欣赏周围其他美丽的风光。

以上帝为中心,享受此时此刻的风光。

半月灣 挖蚌 計畫

這篇文章主要是針對2021年7月24號 半月灣 Pillar Point beach 低潮挖蚌初試的通知和計畫,供大家參考。

最重要提醒

一定注意看好小朋友!如果可以,小朋友請穿救生衣。雖然是退潮,但是從開始到結束,潮水會慢慢逼近海灘,所以一定要注意小朋友安全。

集合時間

根據Pillar Point Habor的潮汐圖顯示,24號早上差不多6點是最低潮,淺水的沙灘露出的最多,所以我們需要在差不多提前一小時到達。

所以目前訂立集合時間為早上5:20點。等到5:40am就會去沙灘開始挖棒。大概2小時結束。

停車地點和集合地點

GPS地址可以參考:Pillar Point RV Park, 4000 Cabrillo Hwy, Half Moon Bay, CA 94019

停車地最好是ParkingA,也就是Pillar Point RV Park。但感覺位子不太多,所以可以考慮從南開到Pillar Point RV Park的之前,在綠線處Coronado St (有紅綠燈,很好認)右轉去Parking B。然後橫穿highway 1到達ParkingA。注意帶小朋友過馬路要小心。

挖蚌的地方就在下方的沙灘,沿著大礁石的右側往海邊走就可以到達。我會穿紅黑相間wet suit在礁石大道附近等候各位。

去往潮汐海灘的沙路
博主的當天著裝~~

挖蚌種類

加州對於不同的貝類保護是不一樣的。而且一般有季節性。這個網站綠燈的是目前可以捕捉的海產:https://wildlife.ca.gov/Fishing/Ocean/Regulations/Fishing-Map/SF-Bay#clams。

我們這次在半月灣主要挖掘的是馬頸蚌(hourse clam),也可以捉一些竹蛏子。但是請注意,海螺,鮑魚都是保護動物,現在不能帶走。

準備工具

提醒:由於此次屬於遊玩為主(不知道能不能挖到足夠多),請各位酌情準備。不需要下血本置辦工具。

漁證(fishing license for that 6/26): 如果只考慮今年釣魚挖蚌一次的,可以考慮購買當天的漁證。16歲以下小朋友不需要,所以如果家裡有小朋友,可以考慮讓他拿桶裝蚌。大人拿貨的話需要買漁證。根據加州法律,每個合法挖蚌人可以挖10個。

漁證購買可以再運動品商店比如Big 5, walmart的戶外部門,Dicks購買,購買時說明日期就好,一張15塊。一個家庭一張應該夠了。

也可以考慮往上購買:https://wildlife.ca.gov/Licensing/Online-Sales,記得打印出來帶在身上。

著裝:由於需要身子趴下去挖好的沙坑面撈,建議挖蚌主力穿比較耐髒快乾的衣服。如果有wetsuit是比較好的選擇,或者半身的釣魚防水服(亞馬遜參考)。

手套:沙地裡會有一些小貝殼的破殼,在摸的時候可能會傷到手指,建議帶一雙手套。

水鞋或者涼鞋:腳會濕,所以還是帶一雙吧。

鹽:看網上貌似有人捉過razor clam,只需要在沙上有洞的地方撒鹽它就會自己鑽出來,本人沒有成功過,大家有興趣可以帶一罐鹽試試。參考視頻:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0xsKVIKM1ac
用鹽挖razor clam

鐵鏟:如上圖所示,花園用的鐵鏟就可以,需要往地下挖大概1米左右。

花園鏟:(亞麻參考),小朋友可以用這個挖著玩,或者挖到深處還差一點點可以考慮用這個來挖。

塑料桶:用來裝棒和工具之類。

挖棒的大管子:長30 inches,直徑12 inches。這個目前我還沒有找到哪裡可以直接買。Home Depot和Lowes都沒有這麼粗的。歡迎各位留言如果找到其他可以買到的地方。

目前所知購買地點是在Lawson Landing Park的魚具店。因為Lawson Landing也是一個很好的挖蚌捕蟹的地方。只是太遠。

這個管子,如上圖我挖掘所示,主要是防止挖深的時候周圍沙塌方導致沒辦法把貝克撈出。

所以也可以考慮用Clam Gun (亞麻參考)。我看到在Half Moon Bay也是有人用的。

挖掘技巧

簡單說一下如果尋找和挖掘。當天來到海灘之後,往比較潮濕的沙地走,由於走路的震動,會導致clam往沙里躲,同時排出體內的海水,行程表沙地裡噴出的水柱。看到水柱大小,高度可以判斷clam的大小。然後找准噴水口開始往下挖。挖掘時要沿著噴水口挖不要直接下鏟,以免傷到貝殼肉。往下挖一米左右,可以開始用手探查,摸到粗糙的肉皮不要急於拔,很容易扯斷鼻子部分。請用小鏟向下再挖一下,鏟到貝殼輕鬆取出就好。

有什麼問題歡迎微信群裡討論。祝大家漁獲豐富。

2020 to 2021

2020 is passing by. I generally feel there is not too much great happen this year. Most are similar like my PhD years: endless work and no social and personal conversation. Glad my parents stay with me and we do have a great time together.

Looks back the year, I think it is most about Covid-19 and US president election. When I wrote this, I still do not know where the virus is from and who will get into the white house. But I learned about one truth is that people really do not care about what you have said. It is just history, and it can be forgotten. Or we can rephrase it in a different way. The line defining truth is not clear anymore.

So is there a truth? I choose to believe so. That is what I chosen in 2013 in Binghamton. Jesus makes life simple. And it makes me to be easy to be happier. In the end of the year, I am so blessed to say something from my deep heart to my past about what I believe, and get a positive feedback from her about her belief on my birthday. I also heard from a friend that she started to go to church in Taiwan, to put herself in front to the lord. I just indeed feel happy, to see someone I am really care about, although I did not express the care enough when I have the opportunity, to have a chance to hear the gospel. I am not sound like a crazy people to them after all.

This year, I think at the end, I have learned that I should do the good thing because I have a good heart, not because I want the rewards. Let God do the job and make the right one I feel comfortable with shows up (please also be quick).

I think I like to work from home, I like jumping rope and doing some weight lifting just by getting out of my room. I also like to see I get one brick on the EB wall with a lot of words written on it ( May be the most wordy one). I did some meaningful things this year.

I also played piano on one of my friends funeral. Yes, I think I see marriage, and I also see death. And I know I cannot explain them well yet. What I learned is that we should, at the right time, say the words we want to say, and say it clear like the end of day is tomorrow. Tell others how much we love them like we won’t see each other until we face Jesus. Try to tell everyone that you hope to meet them when you can, and hope to be with them forever, if possible, when we left this world, no matter how sudden it is. Make them hear the gospel.

For 2021, I hope:

I can keep a good habit to write useful blogs here again at least every month.

I can finish some religion books so I can have my own understand of belief so I can talk to my friends with a completed logic circle, maybe create some slides so I can preach in my way.

I hope I can continuously work on my github so do some good project. This need to be frequently. Small progress everyday would make a lot difference.

I hope I can finish my Game Engine Architecture book.

I hope I can wire a ray tracer in Taichi.

I hope I can get a good sense of AWS usage.

I hope I can find the one who will be with me on the road to God and please make sure I feel it is the right one.

Focus more on myself, run myself good, and enjoy what God plans ahead.

See you tomorrow, 2021.

CVPR 2019 Day 1

What an early flight to Long Beach! Waked up at 3:30am and noticed that there was Lyft driver available at mid-night. Have to say that Lyft/Uber makes life easier. But just a reminder that SJC won’t open checkin until 4:00 am… So don’t be rush there anyway.

So Sunday and Monday are for the workshops. The morning I went to the 3D Scene Understanding workshop and listen to a good talk on “What do Single-view 3D Reconstruction Networks Learn?” It points out the current state of the arts single image reconstruction work is, by large chance, just image retrieval. This is due to that the shape similarity measurement is not good enough and the training set is contaminated by models which already looks very similar like the one in the test set. And using a certain model pose view as the single image input fits 2D image case but does not really the best one for 3D mesh case. The talk really resolve some issues in 3D reconstruction research and I think the paper is good to read. You can find the paper Here. And here is the Youtube video for the talk

However, at the same day Facebook AI also provide their Mesh R-CNN basically to reconstruct mesh from single image like there R-CNN to create 2D mask from a single image. Hence it would be interesting to check that paper to see if it violates any issues points out by the work above.

In the afternoon my colleague leads me to the ScanNet benchmark challenge workshop. Professor Matthias Nießner is really active in facial/body reconstruction work and now his work also expand to general scene 3D capture and registration. ScanNet is trying to create data set with vertex level labeling plus 3D bounding box , like the 3D version of the ImageNet. The workshop is basically an exhibition of all the people who participate in the detection task with the ScanNet dataset. The Stanford’s work achieve very good result by take advantage of temporal coherence information. It is a very interesting idea and fundamentally optimize the data representation and training procedure. Very nice result.

Later afternoon I went back to my original research domain to take look of the state-of-the-art human body/facial capture survey style talk given by Michael J Black. I do feel there is great potential. Need to investigate when I have some spare time. And here is the video for that.

I think Monday I will be in the AR/VR session. Hope to learn more in this region. Or at least see what is the part people still not cover yet…

旧金山日本五年多次往返签证申请经验

这里我总结一下自己在旧金山日本领馆签证的经验。旧金山日领馆负责加州中北以及内华达的签证服务。而且要求是自己来递签。

第一,材料准备。这个网站总结的很好:https://piao.tips/japan-multi-visa-in-the-us-san-francisco/。不过我自我的感觉下来还是有东西要强调一下。

官方网站找到了很贴心的,针对不同国籍的签证check list:https://www.sf.us.emb-japan.go.jp/itpr_en/e_m02_01_04.html

个人在面签时候是完全按照这个check list收材料的,不多不少。与上面驴友总结的稍有不同,那个自己的一封信说明要多次签证理由的信还蛮重要,真的被收走了。而且上文驴友那一份是针对以前去过日本再签写的,所以不要照抄哈。

关于申请表格,第一页名字除了写英文,还要在相应地方写中文的汉字,反面签名我也是用汉字签的。注意日本表格的时间写法,DD/MM/YY而不是一般的月份开头。

关于check list 里面第6条财产文件,我是两个都准备了。pdf里面强烈说明了如果是选择出工作证明+最近工资单,那么工作证明不能是Offer letter。各个公司开工作证明的方法不一。以Amazon为例,在内网搜索Employment Verification可以很容易找到拿到工作证明的步骤,网上操作就可以,不需要联系HR。注意default pin哈。

至于多数面经里面提到的机票打印和旅店订单,行程计划,大使馆工作人员倒没有问我要。不过我还是有准备了。注意酒店订单一定要有自己的名字。最好自己定可以退的那种,用来签证就够。之后再退掉。免得上面有多个名字或者没有你的名字,万一签证官看到了还给自己找麻烦。

在面签过程中,签证官有问在日有没有朋友,建议说没有。否则会要求写出很详细的对方的信息。

整个签证过程很快,大概5分钟。之后会收到一个收据,5个工作日后凭收据来大使馆窗口领取护照。记得带正确金额现金(收据上会写明金额),不找零的,感觉也不能信用卡支付。

如果不想再跑一趟而且市里也有朋友的话,可以找人带领。只要你在收据上写好代领人的名字,并且用中文签你自己的名即可。中文前面的原因是表格要求签名必须和你护照签名吻合。是中国护照所以还是签中文吧。代领人的名字感觉得写英文,因为代领人要出示photo ID,如果代领人用美国驾照,那当然只有英文了。日本人办事很中规中矩,所以按规矩比较好。

交通

大使馆早上9点30开门,如果从南边过去,建议坐早上7-8点的caltrain,直到旧金山终点。然后走两分钟去坐10号公交。这个通勤在Google Map上可以搜到。旧金山公交票是2块75,交费后会得到收据,2小时内换乘都是免费的。所以理论上如果大使馆人不多可以来回到Caltrain终点。我签证一共花了大概1小时,到大使馆的时候领取的号码是15号,而刚到的时候才开始办1号。大概是这个速度。

 

SIGGRAPH 2018 Day 4

Today is a little casual. In the morning, I visit Nvidia ray  tracing/path tracing section. They emphasize that similar like the first GPU card in 1998, The RTX is a new thing that everyone should try to catch up with.

Then I also went to 3D capture session. The papers there are all very interesting. I think we are also at an important stage at the moment.

In the afternoon, I went to material capture session, It is glad to see how a deep learning model is trained which can use differentiable render for material generation from one image file. I do need to look into this work.

SIGGRAPH 2018 Day 3

Today is a time space mixture adventure. Try to get into the talk of two state of the arts face related paper in the VR session in the morning. One is from TMU and the other is from Facebook Reality Lab. Both of them try to tackle the issue on how to show genuine whole face expression in VR while both sides wear the headset.

On one side,  Matthias Niessner and his golden face synthesize team explore how to deal with this issue based on their face-to-face work. The advantage is that due to they use generic face model, the representation is not strongly subject dependent so no calibration and pre-capture is necessary. However, due to only use infrared camera inside headset for eye gaze tracking, the upper face’s expression may not be preserved.

While facebook use subject dependent high quality model for this work. And use deep learning on teeth composition. The quality looks better. However, it needs pre-capture for the subject.

 

And thanks to my friends from Pixar, this time we notice that there is no booth for the animation studio so we don’t know where to pick up the renderman teapot. It is turn out that they release after their renderman 22 demo talk which last for 1 hour. It is actually a really good talk. 30 years development of renderman, from scan line renderer to ray tracing, and then path tracing. They give up old infrastructure for physical correct and simple models. It is glad to see at this stage, ray tracing lighting can be achieved in an interactive speed. With the help of Nvidia’s RTX, I think the production time for all stages of animation can be shrink and we could see more ideas in the movie since the cost to try out new story line, camera, actions, etc are cheaper. But the most important thing is get my teapot!

 

 

 

 

 

 

The real-time live! demo session is also crazy. The Nvidia RTX, ILM X LAB, and Unreal combined VR virtual movie shot demo is totally a game changer on how we can make movie quality shots in real time with everyone inside a virtual environment. I can image in near future, the individual shot may be captured in this real-time ray tracing environment. Then the director can cut the movie to review, and handle that short to the off-line renderer, if necessary, for movie final images.

SIGGRAPH2018 Day 2

So today’s major coverage is two speeches, one is from Rob Bredow, VP of ILM. The other is form the CEO of NVIDIA.

Rob’s talk is the power of creative process. In which he talked about his experiences to be the first time VFX producer on the Star Wars movie: Solo.

He mentioned the people will have 3 different stages during the creative process:

  • Just start: when you want to be in the field.

During the beginning, people should do study. And try to build the things from other’s work. More like interdisciplinary study. It is easier to create something based on other stuff.

  • Know the theme: when you already know the tools and try to actively work in the field.

 

  • Lead: How to lead creative process.

During this stage, people need to first define the theme, which is the concept you try to follow. Make sure to work on this path before dive into the detail. He use the example on the solo film where he hope to go back to the classic 70’s film style. Hence the movie production explicitly uses rig for the hyper speed traveling set, and under water explosion, which relies on the real hardware (huge 180 degree LED screen, and 20 thousands fps camera) to get real lighting and “explosion never seen before”.

Then it is about learn on the constraint, so people can focus on the right thing. He mentioned how the roller coaster in Disney’s Animal Kingdom was created. From the beginning when it is not fit into the style. Then people visit Nepal and found the story of Yeti to build up the story about Everest and Yeti for the roller coster.

Third is simplify. Try to make the target simple. He mentioned about a shot in World War where a rig is jumped out during a crash scene, which may need retouching the scene to remove. However, no one actually knows what that is and people pay attention to the character’s face, so it is indeed not that important to spend extra time on removing in the film.

The third is about share. Rob mentioned on the start of ASWF, the academy software foundation, where the film industry first time try to organize their software together to share tools between companies.

The topic title.

ASWF actually starts with a lot of big names. I think to explore these repositories could also help new people to get into the business.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

He also proposed his photo book he made during the Solo movie, I think this is a very good collection.

 

Nvidia’s special event is crazy to attract a lot of people. It is also my first time to see the CEO’s iconic gesture: hold the nvidia card on the stage. The event is basically the announcement of the next big thing since CUDA introduced in 2003. The Turing architecture, where Nvidia makes real-time ray tracing rendering possible.

10 Gig ray per second, mixed operation on GPU 16 TFLOPS and 16 TIPS, 500 Trillion tensor ops per second, 8K image decoder. This monster makes real time ray tracing possible. It dramatically reduce the time of physical based rendering for movie quality images, hence could be very attractive to the movie industry. And since the basic version is not that expensive ($2300, I think it is worthy than some AR glasses), we may expect soon game developer may not need to play too much tricks on the shading effect while just let things following the physics law.

Mr. Huang really enjoys to use the high glossy RTX card to play with the audience.

Demo on the real time ray tracing Star Wars shot. The light does look real!

Introduce how different hardware/software stack it is for the new arch.

 

 

SIGGRAPH 2018 Day 1

Day one is so many people! Next time if I arrived one day earlier, I should do registration first.

So in the morning, I went to the Vulkan course, really helpful to understand this thing and glad it has all the support we expect to. I think it is the way to go.

Then we visit the product exhibition, nice to see the probs from Infinity War and Solo.

The AR session hosted by apple basically go over what they said at WWDC, which makes AR still a pretty new thing for the graphics industry. I can sense that people are looking for new things, but they hesitated on the future.

In this case, what should we do? The Jurassic park 25 year screening gives the answer. You just spend your spare time and do it. Then break the old business. From 0 to 1, that is how we make progress.

See everyone in day 2.