Here in Canada it should be no surprise to anyone, that we don’t get a very long Summer. But the Summer we do get is amazing! Really hot, really long days. And one thing that you can find in abundance around here is fresh water lakes.
Close to the border of my province, it seems like nothing but lakes. This is where I like to go to get great seasonal pics of changing colours, or in this instance, the last remaining Summer nights.
This shot is actually really late at night when the last glimmer of the sun is actually long gone. I had the camera on a tripod and shot this with an almost two minute exposure time! I don’t normally recommend this, as digital noise in your shot can start to get out of control. There are many ways to deal with this problem, but none that will fix it completely. A good tripod is definitely your best friend at times like this.
When I drove into the Columbia River Gorge area from Portland it was quite late at night. I could still see the immensity of the gorge even though it was so dark. Instead of taking the freeway, you still have the choice to take the historic highway that runs along the side of the steep cliffs that start the mountain range.
Along the road there are a number of pull outs that have great majestic waterfalls running down and under the road. Almost like they were put there on purpose.
I rolled up and grabbed one of the last remaining campsites near Multnomah Falls. Probably the most recognizable one of them all!
In the morning I started at the crack of dawn and hiked up the trail. I know I say it a lot, but I’m used to flat ground. This is anything but. The trail heads straight up with no place to rest really until you reach the top of the falls. And there’s always that one guy in the morning running the whole thing. Makes you feel so crappy about yourself ;(
Along the trail, which is long and very winding, there are so many other amazing waterfalls. Each with their own dynamics. Very cool to walk under a bunch of them. Not to mention the greenest place I have ever been.
My goal that day was to reach the triple falls on the way up to Larch mountain. Unfortunately some kids got there before me, presumably from the other side, and would not get off the top. So I knew I was going to have to wait to get a good pic. So I went further down the trail and found this amazing little bend in the river. It was so quiet and amazing, with fallen logs and moss growing everywhere. So I stopped and got out all my equipment and started to set things up when I heard a “Hello” come from behind a huge boulder behind me.
I guess I didn’t get up as early as I thought. Because behind me there were two couples in about their 70’s set up for a picnic! With a table cloth and everything! It was like a mad tea party in the middle of the forest. Very cool, and super strange at the same time.
So I had a little chat with them, as every time you take a picture in the middle of nowhere, people always want to know what your doing. Not my favourite thing, but in a place like that, and no rush, it can be fun. Plus they had beer 😉
On the road home from the travels I take, more often than not, passes through Wyoming. It is a great mid point in the two countries I travel in the most. My home country of Canada, and America.
Wyoming is full of such great wildnerness. It really has to been seen to be believed. From open ranges rising to thunderous mountains. To sleepy glaciers lakes flowing down to raging riverbeds. It really has it all. But Yellowstone National Park is where everything collides into a massive ecosystem of wonder.
My favourite feature of the park are the geyser basins. These amazing (and smelly!) hotspots are where yellowstone really sets itself apart from every other park in the continental system. And one thing that always fascinates me about them is how they destroy everything around them, yet life flourishes.
On my last trip here I really wanted to get a shot that represented the basins in a different sort of way. Something a little more unique than the colourful waters the geysers are known for. And what better way to show the slow destructive power, than a dead tree being consumed by the bog!
Throughout the Glacier national park in Montana, you are treated to some of the most amazing views on the planet. The only problem with lots of mountains is the lack of sun during the morning. The great sunrises of the prairies are not what you can expect in the mountains.
What you can see more often than not is the great fog that starts to float around when the temp starts to rise. In this photo in particular I really wanted to highlight the shear volume of fog that you can see rising from the valleys. It’s amazing to me that all that moisture wouldn’t even make up one tablespoon of water!
Even though this is pretty early in the morning, and the light was very even, I still felt it would benefit from the HDR treatment. I really like to do HDR’s of landscapes because of the shadow detail that you get on the trees. They seem to have a clay model type feel I really dig.