Monday, October 5, 2009

Winter Comes Early..

I wanted to finally make the trek to find one of the most beautiful falls in the area, Little Zig Zag falls. So, off to Mt Hood I went one afternoon. Just 4 miles West of Government Camp, I took a non-descript forest service road North into the woods. After one mile, I started seeing snow alongside the road. Within another half mile, snow was covering the road. I couldn't believe it, early October and the snows are showing up. The leaves haven't even turned yet and we have snow on the ground.

After 2.5 miles I came to the parking area which had plenty of snow. Before turning off the car, I looked at the thermometer and was astonished that it said 39 degrees! It was 3:30 in the afternoon and it's still in the 30's. Wow. Not expecting snow, I didn't pack alot of clothes, but I got out and put on every stitch of clothing I had. Thankfully, I always keep a pair of gloves stashed in my photo backpack! Shouldering the backpack and grabbing the tripod an filter bag, I set off on the hike to the falls.

The trail to the falls is pretty short, around 1/2 miles, but today it was covered in snow. As I carefully walked the slippery trail that follows the beautiful stream, my eyes continually searched the woods and snow covered logs for interesting compositions.

After 15-20 minutes I made it to the falls and let me tell you, they are beautiful. In my view, it is a quintessential Oregon waterfall. Whispery water cascades over basalt rock as it tumbles into a deep pool at the bottom. I spent 45 minutes taking different compositions of the falls, which unfortunately at the end of the summer had alot of deadfall in it (waiting for the heavy winter water to flush it out). After exhausting the different possibilities (for now) I headed back down the trail to work the stream and see if I could find a few shots that inspired me, which I hope will inspire you.

It seems that every time I go out to shoot in Oregon, usually just a couple hours away from my home, I remind myself just how blessed I am to live in such a beautiful state with such abundant landscape photography opportunities.

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