Central Oregon

Just spent a couple of days in Central Oregon.  I stayed away from the Malheur NWR – don’t think those militia boys welcome non-news photographers who cannot give them any attention. – instead I made my way to one of my favorite places – Smith Rocks State Park near Terrebonne.  I have been itching to get out and shoot and so have been hawking the weather forecast along with the Photographers Ephemeris.  Broken clouds and a predicted track for the Monday evening sunset and Tuesday morning moonset/sunrise seemed perfect.  Just behind and a head of a wet front.

I got to the parking lot and set up in time for the sunset and while I have many more images to process – shot as the evening went on and some color developed – I did manage to catch the sun dropping behind the Rocks.  The sky was starting to get interesting.  Hopefully there will be some more shots that really bring out the color that developed in the sky.  Darkness and I headed for Redmond, dinner, a book and some sleep.


Next morning found me on the road by 0615 and I arrived in time to watch the moon set in front of me and the sun rise behind me.  The three shots below are a bit of a time sequence starting with my arrival about 0635 and ending about 0715.

Moonlight_river1Moring_glory_riverMorning_overviewThe second one in this sequence shows the sunrise just beginning to highlight Morning Glory Wall – well named.   The sun came up and filled the valley and rocks with light.  Great morning light.

The wind and the cold – 29 degrees – finally drove me back to the car – can’t believe I forgot my gloves and it took me almost the entire drive to Sisters to meet my friend Leslie for breakfast to warm up.

As always you can click on any of the i mages for a larger view and Comments are always welcome.  Thanks for taking the time to read and look.

Let’s All Go To The Lobby

Got this message from Kirsten at Art Counselor, Inc. a few weeks back and was thrilled.

“You are going to be the featured artist in the new lobby of the main hospital. These are going to be REALLY big – each panel of the triptych will be about 37 x 60, and the siuslaw will be 32 x 48, all on canvas with floater frames.  I’m soooo excited about this project!  there will be custom spotlights on these, gallery style. It is going to look awesome!  I knew I had to use this picture someplace special the 1st time I saw it.” 

The triptych image is done and mounted in the new lobby of Peace Health hospital and the image below is how it looks in-place.  (note the Siuslaw River one is not back from the printer yet so I will put it up in a later posting – the one below is the selected image but it is not quite how it will look in place)  The triptych image is called “Transition” and was shot near Marcola, OR.  (Thanks to Dave Kretzing for telling that it was a hybrid poplar stand)



I cannot thank Kirsten enough for her continued support.  If you get down in the U-District and have the time and inclination I hope you stop over for a quick look or maybe just click on one of these images for a larger view.  Thanks




A few days ago I heard someone say that a Casserole is for the hungry and the heartbroken.  I got to thinking about that and decided that a winter trip, however short, to the snow filled mountains east of town would pretty much fill those casserole functions without all the calories.

This morning was dry and cool here in Eugene and I headed out looking for snow.  I ended up going up the Old Mckenzie Highway (closed at the 7 mile post with a snow gate) with the idea of going into Lost Creek Springs.  I have shot in there before but never in the winter so this seemed like an opportunity for some new views.

Heading down the trail over old, icy snow I first stopped at a little waterfall right off the trail and parking area.  I am not sure of it’s name (perhaps Lost Creek Falls) but it sits in a lovely space.

Lost_Creek_fallsThe trail is little more than a scratch line down the hill toward the springs and in places it was very slick – snowy and frozen.  Made for tricky walking both in and out.  It was so different seeing the springs and the vegetation around them in an almost bare condition given that in the spring, summer and fall it is so verdant.  It is always sort of dark under the old growth but with the clouds and winter dreary weather is felt very much darker and colder.  Sure a different view.

Lost_spring_LEDespite the dark and cold I think I got my spirit filled up with a mountain-air casserole and it sure made my morning.

As before you can click on an image to get a larger view on your screen and comments are always welcome.  Thanks for looking.


Shore Acres storm

A couple of months ago I watched a re-run of an Oregon Field Guide episode that in part featured Shore Acres State Park near Coos Bay/Charleston.  In that episode they pointed out a couple of websites that indicated surf height.  I think mostly for surfers in the area but I have been hawking them looking for high wave conditions.  With the current line up of storms off the Pacific it looked really good if one was willing to put up with the storm conditions.  I was.  The forecast for the area was for a break in the rain this morning so after my workout I headed out.  It takes a little over 2.5 hours to get there but it was worth the trip.  As I drove It rained and rained and I found myself questioning the weatherman for sure but when I got to within 3 miles of the park the rain stopped.  I would not call it clear but no rain made for a reasonably comfortable outing despite the 40-50 mph winds that were gusting over the bluffs.  That all lasted for about 1.5 hours and then CAME THE RAINS!! — in sheets — riding the wind.  That last half hour of shooting was flat out miserable.  I was soaked as I returned to the car with what I hoped were some decent images.

The first one is looking north from a visitors trail just off the parking lot. The breakers over those spires of rock were amazing.

LN_Burst1I changed lenses and added a 6-stop neutral density filter.  The camera position was about the same but the wide angle lens added to the scene and the filter slowed the action.  My favorite so far of the 300+ shots I took.  Lots to work thru.

LN_LE6stopFinally and this was mostly just for fun I tried to capture the wind and how it was moving not only the vegetation but my camera as well.  Probably not to too many folks taste.

Storm_tree_SABe sure to click on an image to get a larger view and as always comments are more that welcome as are companions on these outings.

Some fog and a pond

We had a seriously thick layer of fog in the Valley this morning and those conditions always seem to make for interesting photography.  I went out to the River Road area north of town and right away noticed a line of trees in the fog. It took me quite a while to find a road that allowed me some access for shooting but finally managed.  The trees just were coming out of the fog and I loved it.

Foggy_tree_lineI drove on to Junction City and headed up High Pass Road toward some of the wineries that occupy the hills just to the west.  I stopped to shoot a stand of trees that were draped in fog and on my way back to the car I was just taken by a stand of trees with an access road running up a hill.  Converted it to Black and White via NIK software

Hill_roadDrove further into the hills and went up to Pfeiffer Winery – beautiful setting.  On the way back down the road I noticed a small pond nestled against a hillside with a magnificent house up on the hill.  I nervously drove down what appeared to be the access road to the home and parked by a small pump house.  A large Dodge RAM pickup quickly came down the road toward me and I figured I was just about to be run off.  Not so – the fellow/owner was so kind and so gracious and was more than willing to let me walk along the edge of pond and shoot.  The property is called Antiquum Farm and he was rightly proud of it.  The two shots below will give you a bit of an idea of how lovely this place is.

Pond_reflection_willow Pond_reflection1It was great morning.  As usual you can get a larger view of the images by clicking on them.  Comments are always welcome.


McKenzie Corridor color

It is raining here this morning following a really nice autumn day.  Dave Hill and I spent yesterday morning shooting color in the Mckenzie River Scenic Corridor.  I think neither of us expected there to be much color remaining following a couple of fairly heavy windy rainstorms but much to out delight we were wrong.  Color everywhere!

We started shooting at the old Forest Service Fish Lake Remount site with the aim of shooting color in the autumn leaves.  Dave especially was hoping to find red amid the black of the lava fields.  I too found a few images like that but overall was looking for subtle color in the dying vegetation.  I really like the simple image below of the leaves with the dying grass.

Red_vine_mapleGrass_Leaves Leaf_contrastWe moved back down the road to Clear Lake – a beautiful spring fed lake that forms one of the sources of the Mckenzie River.  It was stunning.  The winter bones of vegetation along the shore reflected in the clear still water of the lake was just magical and the changing color of the shoreline brush added to the beauty of this site.  Dave was really happy about what he was getting and I hope you go over to his blog site for a look.  See the links on my page.

Bare_Willow_reflectionClaer_bank_panoWe almost buttoned up the gear for the day when Dave suggested we drive up the Old Mckenzie Highway for a bit just to see what color we could find.  I don’t think we went up more that 4-5 miles and stopped at place we have shot before.  We got out of the car and were blown away by the contrast and the color just across the road.  I think this turned out to be my favorite shot of the day and one that I will put up on FB and probably post in Google+ as well.  If you click on the images you can get a larger view on your monitor.  Just says autumn in the Cascades of Oregon to me.

Fog_color_hillsideIt may have been the last trip up the Scenic Highway for this year as I am thinking snow and closed gates are on the way but it sure did cap off a nice autumn in the Cascades with a good friend.

A Sweet Morning

I try to apply colors like words that shape poems, like notes that shape music.

—-Joan Miro

Dave Hill and I had a e-discussion on the location for an outing on Tuesday  – Cascades vs the Coast Range and settled on a morning trip to Sweet Creek in the Oregon Coast range.  The weather forecast on Monday called for a dry day on Tuesday then cycling into almost a week of showers and rain.  I am not complaining – we need the moisture after a long dry spell.

Sweet Creek is one of my favorite places to photograph.  (Ran into a fellow photographer who had driven down from Portland after reading and hearing about it – I think he was impressed.) We both thought that the color would be almost gone or at least dwindling down to the point of being the odd, hard to find location.  Such was not the case and as we drove through the Coast Range toward Mapleton the color just seemed to get better.  Fog wound its way through the old growth conifers and along the Siuslaw River and made for even more interesting photo opportunities.

The trail head is about 10 miles up the Sweet Creek watershed from Mapleton and it too was a beautiful drive.  The hike was slow as we could barely go 100 feet with exclaiming on the beauty before us.  I for one really shot slowly and tried to compose the images as best I could.  The colors were still in great form but that may change with the coming weather.

There is an area along the stream that is bare rock and it was rather steep and slippery and demanded that we walk carefully to get to spots that offered what we hoped would be good locations.  The bedrock banks also offered wonderful scatters of colorful leaves as is shown below.

Boulder_leaf_scatterFalls_chute_HDRThere are numerous waterfalls and chutes visible along the trail and sometimes the adjacent vegetation seems to have purposely grown in such a way as to offer pleasing images.

As I walked the trail I came across a simple clean image of a fresh Sword fern frond and took 9 images that stacked into a single one.  Click on the image for a larger view.

Frond_stackedWe hiked further on along the elevated walk ways and found a place that seemed to sum up what we had experienced, IMHO, and headed back to the car.  We shot for over 2 hours and probably did not hike more than a mile.

Last shot of the morning for me.

Colorful_riffleI still have images to process and may put them up on FB later today or tomorrow and I suggest you go over to Dave Hill’s blog (see Links) for what I am sure are great and different shots from mine.  Thanks for looking and Stay dry!!

Morning in a Foggy Valley

“One should not only photograph things for what they are but for what else they are.” – Minor White

Yes it was dark and foggy in the hills surrounding the upper Willamette Valley this morning as Dave Hill and I made our way toward the map dot of Alvadore.  We drove around to a few locations we had photographed before but it was not until we turned around and moved back toward the hilltop that we saw images that at least to me described the still quiet of the morning light with the fog touching the timber.   First a small panorama of the hillside and then a small section of that panorama.  I liked the rolling dip in the field. Morning_panoMorning_hill_rollWe moved up to the top of the hill and morning in the small valley was laid out in front of us.  Another small panorama with just a bit of remaining autumn color.

Plowed_field_panoThese all need to be clicked on and thus enlarged to get a better view of the morning we found.

The Rockies — Part 2

Just a few more images from the trip to Yellowstone NP and Grand Teton NP.  One of the big treats for me on this trip was getting to spend time with my Grand Niece, Suki, both us with cameras in hand.

The one below was taken in early morning light — the Upper Canyon of the Firehole River.

Firehole_Rv_Canyon_BWDetail in Gibbon Falls on the Gibbon River headed toward Norris Geyser basin

Gibbon_Falls_detailLiving and Dying on the edge of a fumarole in the Norris Geyser Basin.

Living&Dying_poolVivid colors in Grand Prismatic Spring on the way to Old Faithful.


Sunset from the Mormon Barn area – Tetons in the background.


A finally a shot I took on the drive home – early morning light on the High Desert of Central Oregon about 70 miles east of Bend.

HD_Sunrise_RbrushComments welcome.  Click for a larger images on your screen.  Prints are also available.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 100 other followers