Ben's Photo Blog

Photos from my various adventures

Posts Tagged ‘waterfall’

Sweet Creek Falls (Revisited)

Posted by Ben on March 5, 2012

I had the chance to get away from work for a little while today and took the chance to drive out towards the coast.  Once I got over the mountains, the weather turned incredibly nice, and I decided to change plans and head back to Sweet Creek Falls. The water levels were much higher this time around, probably as a result of all the rain we’ve been getting over the past few weeks.  Here are a few pictures from the falls at the end of the trail.

The lighting was really cool here for this shot.  The sun was shining on the path in the foreground but the falls in the background were in the shadows.  I was able to use the neutral density filter to slow down the shutter speed for the water while still getting the vivid colors in the foreground.

This was from the “upper” section of the falls.  It was a little harder to take pictures here since the sun was directly behind the falls.  I had to position the shot to block out most of the sun, though the top left corner is still a little blown out.  It still turned out pretty well though.


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Sweet Creek Falls

Posted by Ben on February 15, 2012

Ugh…it’s been a long day. Two assignments due plus a big midterm tomorrow equals a very busy day today. Working backwards through my photo collection led me to some pictures I took around exam time last term. I took a drive out towards the coast to a place called Sweet Creek Falls, where I followed a trail through a canyon filled with waterfalls.  Here are a few shots from my explorations:


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January Adventures

Posted by Ben on January 30, 2012

Well…it’s been a while.  I got pretty caught up in homework and teaching near the end of last term, and the blog definitely took a back seat to other priorities.  Not that I’m any less busy now, probably the opposite, but I wanted to put up some pictures.  Unfortunately, I haven’t had a whole lot of time for photography recently, and the weather hasn’t been very cooperative for weekend explorations.  However, the first day I was back in Eugene at the beginning of January, I didn’t have anything else to do, so I went out adventuring with one of my really good friends here in Oregon.

It was quite the trek, through various poorly kept and even more poorly marked forest service roads, but well worth it.  We stopped at one spot (near some scenic logging operations) on the way to look out over the valley, which was completely covered in low clouds:

Eventually, we made it to our destination: Kentucky Falls.  It was a beautiful hike that followed a stream through the Siuslaw National Forest. After about half a mile, we came to the lip of the upper falls, and about ten minutes of switchbacks later, were rewarded with this great view of the falls from the bottom:

The trail followed the stream from here past a series of rapids, and eventually brought us to the lower falls, which were truly awe-inspiring. We found ourselves down in a canyon, with fairly steep cliffs on three sides. Ahead, there was an outcropping that stuck out from the cliff. The stream here apparently breaks into two flows, each of which comes around one side of this outcropping and falls into the canyon. Unfortunately, the spray from the falls was so strong that I was only able to take a few shots before my lens was coated in water droplets, even about 100 feet away from the falls itself. This is probably the best shot I got (right half of the falls), including part of the viewing platform along the trail in the foreground:

After standing around admiring the falls for a while (and getting pretty soaked), we made the trek back to the car, which was almost entirely uphill in this direction. The trip back was mostly uneventful, except for a brief encounter with some snow flurries at higher elevations. Round trip, and including stops to get out of the car to look around and getting lost in the woods once, it was about a 5 hour trip there and back. It made for a long day, followed by dancing later that night, but it was definitely worth it.  This hike is definitely on my short list of things to do again once the weather turns nice.


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Taking the Plunge

Posted by Ben on October 25, 2011

This shot is from Sahalie Falls up in the Cascades.  There are a lot of things about the way this shot turned out that I really like.  The first is the color of the water, the blue at the top of the falls and the sheet of white as it falls. And while the water is white, you don’t get the feeling that it’s overexposed that I frequently get.  This was because I switched from evaluative to spot metering for this shot, properly exposing the water, rather than trying (and failing) to properly expose everything in the shot. The consequences of this are a much, much faster shutter speed.  This was taken at 1/800 sec as opposed to the 1/200 sec or 1/500 sec that I normally get.  In addition to getting the exposure of the water correct, it also did a great job of “freezing” it.  To me, at least, you get a better idea of just how much water is coming over the falls, and the amount of force behind it.  Slower shutter speeds can make for very pretty and smooth images, but the trade-off is that you lose this sense of power.

I also like the faint hint of a rainbow about 2/5 of the way up the picture, and how the silhouette of the outcropping in front of the falls brings it out a little more on the right side.  The silhouette is also pretty cool, as you can see the blades of grass growing from it against the nice white of the falls.


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A Splash of Color

Posted by Ben on October 20, 2011

Tomorrow’s a big day for me here.  I’m both taking and giving my first exam at U of O.  It seems backwards, but I feel more worried about the test I’m giving in my precalculus class than the one I’m taking in abstract algebra.  I’ve put a lot of work into it over the past few days, trying to write questions that are both fair and challenging, and having to balance covering all of the material with writing something that most students will be able to finish in about 50 minutes.  Anyway, I thought I’d take a break from worrying about those and put a few more pictures up.

These are both from a hike near Sahalie Falls a few weekends ago.  One of the strangest things about driving through the mountains here as opposed to those that I’m used to on the east coast is that a lot of the trees here don’t change colors, or if they do, it’s not as spectacular.  It’s not to say that there aren’t some that do, you just have to hunt a little harder for them.

I really liked the red color in contrast to the green of the surrounding trees and the white of the falls behind.  I also really liked the narrower depth of field in this shot.

Again, I really liked this one for the sharp color contrasts between the red, green, and blue.

Well, back to work now.  Hopefully I’ll have time to go adventuring again this weekend and get some new pictures 🙂


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