Day 5 – The Arch Inside

The Arch Inside

The arch inside is like a theme park attraction.  You enter and go below the arch (in the basement).  You’ll find a gift shop, displays and more.

This mural shows how the arch compares with other national monuments.  It’s taller than Mt. Rushmore!  It makes the Statue of Liberty look tiny.  It’s huge!

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A Portion of the Mural

I thought I was stand there to see how I compare.  (Okay… this isn’t life sized, but only a scale model).

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I guess I’m about 30 stories tall.


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Yes, it’s 63 floors tall.

While in the basement you wait for your group to be called.  You line up.  Consequently, you stand in line only to be routed to another room where you stand in line.

The Next Waiting Area

The next waiting area shows slide shows, they take your picture and assign you to a pod.

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Tourist Photo (Expensive)

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Slide Show About Building the Arch

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Pods That Take You to the Top

At the Top

At the top there are tiny windows you can look out.  The view is amazing.  It can get crowded, but if you wait around, there’s a lull between groups.

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Paul at the Top


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Looking Towards Downtown Saint Louis


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Looking Towards the Mississippi River

Back Outside

Once back outside, I’m taking pictures of the arch (again.)  It is a photographer’s dream.  I’m having fun photographing it.

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Standing Under It Shooting in Panoramic Mode

I put my camera in panoramic mode while standing under the arch.  Sweeping the camera over my head, I got this picture (right).  As a result, it is surreal.

Because the arch is so big, a photographer needs a very wide angle lens.  Many of my shots are done with a 10mm lens on an APS-C camera.  (This is equivalent to a 15mm on a full-frame camera.)

It is fun to play with the arch images in programs like Topaz Impressions 2.  It’s artistic look lends itself to artistic treatment.  Why not?

I created this one (below) using a preset I created called “Crayon”.  Topaz Impressions 2 has several crayon presets, but I didn’t like the results.

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Crayon with Topaz Impression 2





















Leaving the Arch

Leaving the arch we headed back toward our hotel on Route 66.   I saw this cool building and stopped to get a shot.  It’s a funeral home… for those who kick it on Route 66.

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Funeral Home on Route 66


Next stop was at a retro drive up donut shop…

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Drove Up Donut Sign Caught My Attention

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Retro Looking

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Painting of How it Used to Look

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Inside Frying Donuts

Next Stop – A Saint Louis Must

Our next stop is a Saint Louis must.  Everyone asks, “Have you gone to Ted Drews yet?”  We were supposed to meet a model here for a photo shoot.  She flaked.  We gave her plenty of notice and had been planning this for




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