I have completed a selection of 9 images from my recent photo shoot in the Sierra Foothills using the new Nikon D3 and the 14-24 zoom. It was mildly windy so I used the D3 at iso 400 to 600 and shot with a small aperture to maximize depth of field. Using the high iso I was able to get shutter speeds of over 1/200 second, enough to stop the blur of wind movement and still maintain depth of field. I love the wide angle 14mm - all of the close up shots were taken at the widest angle possible. I was able to get very close to the poppies and still get a large range of view to make dramatic images. I am very pleased with the image quality from this system. While it cannot even begin to compare with the detail of the H3D, I was able to get shots that would not have been possible with the H3D due to the wide angle and need for fast shutter speeds with small aperture.
Here is a link to the images on my web site: http://www.elizabethcarmel.com/#a=0&at=0&mi=2&pt=1&pi=10000&s=0&p=7
I only spotted one rattlesnake, laying across the trail on my way back. I'm glad one did not surprise me while I was crawling around in the poppies! I almost stepped on one a few years back in a similar area, so I keep an eye and ear out for them when I am in areas like this in the Sierra foothills.