Tag Archives: forest

Zip Lining Near Whistler, BC

I was going through some older photo shoots this week and came across a series of them I did in and around Whistler, British Columbia. From those captures I have attached a series of them around a zip line we did with our youngest daughter. I love zip lining and have done it a few times around the country. In this case it felt like we were in an old Star Wars movie getting to the zip line. The reference is these walkways we had to take to the launching “tree houses” (if you get the reference after seeing the pictures, great …if not, sorry). The shots don’t do justice to just how far off the forest floor you are walking. You get a slightly better perspective of how far up you are with the last two shots of the actual zip line. The zip line was strung over a mountain river and went back and forth zig zagging down stream. We would zip line from one “tree house”… cross the river, get off the line and zig zag further downstream on the next zip line.

The next set of pictures gives you a better idea of what the lines looked like as they zig zagged downstream back and forth across the rover.

This shows my wife on one of the runs to the next “tree house”.

This one shows our daughter and gives you a better adea how far up in the trees the “tree houses” are. The scenery was stunning and the experience was exhilarating.

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Hiking in Abstract Watercolor

From all of the hiking I have done in the Pacific Northwest over the years, I wanted to share three art prints I did from some shots I took. I used a watercolor technique that uses abstract shapes and clean lines to create a sharp contemporary look.

The first one is of a stump I came across along the trail.

Stump in the Forest

The second one gives you an idea of how narrow the path actually was at this point in the hike.

Forest Path

The third one shows the hiking trail opening up slightly as the terrain leveled off.

Forest Trail

I’m always trying to find an artistic look with the captures I take and thought this modern abstract look added a different element to the scene.

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Lake 22 Trail

I wanted to share a little hiking/photo adventure with you from our trip to the Pacific Northwest. My son-in-law and I love hiking and have been on numerous hikes together. For the last few years I have had to succumb to the fact that with my knees continuing to get worse, I was to the point I couldn’t do much hiking at all. As I have mentioned for those of you that follow me, I had knee replacement surgery on my right knee last year and in June of this year, my left knee. My personality is such that I am all over the physical therapy needed to get back to “normal”. I was looking forward to this trip for many reason, one being to get back into my love of hiking in the Pacific Northwest and the photo opportunities they present.

So on his day off, he suggested a specific trail he knew I would like called Lake 22 Trail near Granite Falls, Washington. It’s about 4 miles one way with an elevation gain of about 1500 feet. At the top of the elevation gain is a lake that the trail goes around….perfect!!

On the day of the hike, it’s raining and turns into a steady solid drizzle as we near the trail head. My backpack is waterproof along with my jacket, so we are good to go. The only thing I was concerned with was my camera getting wet. With that in mind, I pre-set everything to a landscape mode with exposure on auto. That way, all I had to do was pull the camera out and snap pictures quickly (I had it hanging around my neck under may jacket). Perfect….we start out and the rain picks up and we are hiking switchback after switchback gaining altitude. When I see a shot worth taking, I stop, unzip my jacket, grab the camera, snap a few and put it back under my jacket before it gets soaked.

As we started the hike, the trail was well maintained and smooth. The further we got and the longer we hiked, the trail turned into a rocky creek. I didn’t realize how long it had been since I had been able to walk by securing my footing on one rock….balanced myself as I moved my other leg to the next rock keeping me out of the water. At first it wasn’t at all natural and I looked like a drunk initially. We were both laughing at it and eventually it all came back to me. But of course he thought it would then be better if he followed me in case I fell, thus the attached two pictures. I got past that issue and all was good. We had a great hike and I took what I thought would be great pictures.

Lake 22 Hiking Trail One
Lake 22 Hiking Trail Two

I was finally getting the balancing thing nailed!!

Well, when we got back to their house and I pulled my camera out to put it away, I noticed that the dial had gotten turned to “manual” for all pictures. In other words, somewhere in the “in and out” from under my jacket I ended up losing my automatic exposure and focus ending up with very, very dark pictures that even all of the digital support of photoshop couldn’t resurrect. I tried every trick in the book when we got home, but to no avail except for one capture and that is the one I have added to the end of the post.

Lake 22 Trail

This particular stream was halfway up the trail as we climbed in altitude. I snapped it on the way back down and believe me there was more water coming down this little stream then there was when we were headed up.

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Crater Lake National Park, Oregon

As part of my continuing series over the last few weeks from our recent road trip to Seattle and back, this weeks post is of Crater Lake National Park. Located northwest of Klamath Falls in the south central portion of Oregon, it was formed 7,700 years ago when a violent eruption triggered the collapse of a tall peak. The collapsed caldera has become the deepest lake in the United States fed by rain and snow and one of the most pristine anywhere on the planet.

In all of our years going up and down the west coast to Seattle, we had never stopped at Crater Lake. I have seen it numerous times from the air flying back and forth, but seeing it up close and personal is an entirely different experience. One of the most recognizable features of the Lake is the island on the western side of the lake. Because of this feature, it makes it easy to spot even at 36,000 feet in the air.

Crater Lake 1

The first thing you notice about the lake is the deep blue color of the water. It looks fake even in person it so so blue.

Crater Lake 2

We drove around the entire lake and as you can see from this capture as we approach the island, it isn’t as small as one would believe, which gives you an idea just how large this lake is.

Crater Lake 3

The next capture (Crater Lake 4) was taken from the drive as it took us around in the upper right coastline of the above capture (Crater Lake 3).

Crater Lake 4

This next capture was a surprise as we continued the drive from Crater Lake 4 going left from that shot.

Crater Lake 5

Love the unique feature that nature created here. Looks like a small castle on an island. To give you a point of reference, the island itself is on the far right side of this capture.

There is so much to do in the Park and so much to see. This just gives you a flavor of the lake itself. Again, the surreal deep blue color of the lake boggles the mind every time you look at it no matter which side of the lake you are on.

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Marymere Falls in the Olympic National Park

My wife and I just got back to Los Angeles from a 2 week road trip back up to Seattle. For those of you that follow my blog, you will remember my post from mid September of the thick smoke in Seattle that we experienced when we were up there then. Yes, we turned around in a couple of weeks and returned this time via car. The early September trip was a last minute one to help on a family matter. This trip we had been planning all summer to take a few days going up, stopping at Crater Lake and Hood River Valley in Oregon. On our way back down we went through Oregon and cut over to the coast to drive down the extreme Northern California Coastline through the many redwoods that populate that geography. So for the next few weeks, I will be sharing some of my favorite captures from our trip.

I’m starting this week with two captures of Marymere Falls located in the Olympic National Park which is on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State. This was an awesome day trip we did with our two daughters and their husbands that live in the Seattle area. We took one of the many ferries that connect Seattle to the surrounding islands and the peninsula. From the arriving ferry port, we still had another 1.5 hour drive to the park.

There is so much to see and do with the many trails, etc, but my favorite one for the day was the attached two captures of Marymere Falls. The trail is just a quick 1.7 mile hike and ends with this 90 foot waterfall. There are two viewing platforms at different elevations to choose from. This first capture is from the lower platform and the second one is from the upper platform.

Marymere Falls
Marymere Falls Bottom Half

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Hiking Captures from the Archives

As with last weeks post, I have been digging through the archives to find captures that I have not done anything with. That being said, we are jumping back to 2013 in North Bend, Washington. North Bend is on the western side of the Cascade Mountain Range just east of Seattle. The town is nestled in a beautiful valley and is home to numerous hiking trails and some pretty intense ones at that.

Todays captures come from two different trails, the first one is called Little Si and is rated low to intermediate.

HIking – Little Si 1

I miss the lushness of the Pacific Northwest woods…….

Hiking Little Si 2

I love the way the sun was shining through the forest canopy on these moss covered boulders.

Hiking – Little Si 3

The next three captures are from the Twin Falls trail. I have shared numerous shots of the falls, but nothing from the trail to get to them.

Hiking – Twin Falls 1

The trail follows the river winding its way to a lookout of the two falls upstream.

Hiking – Twin Falls 2

Again, the sheer beauty of the forest…..

Hiking – Twin Falls 3

From my perspective going through these archives brought a welcome respite from being sequestered in our home for the foreseeable future. Hope this finds you and yours healthy!! Be well and hope you enjoyed the hike!!

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Out-Takes 2: Seattle Snow

No hiker in these out-takes, but it is from the same snow event (Christmas 2017). I have attached four captures from that shoot.  The first three were in the finals for the project I was working on and the fourth one was just a random shot that made a first pass and then got eliminated. But, heck I figured all out-takes are fair game…..

As we head into the final week and a half leading up to Christmas, I wanted to go with some more seasonal captures for the Holiday Season. What keeps pulling me into these shots is that it was one of those snows that produces large fluffy flakes that stick to all of the trees and plants. There usually isn’t any wind involved and a serenity takes over as the landscape quietly changes to the fluffy white look. Two particular times in my life come to mind anytime I have the priviledge to be in one of these snows. The first one that comes to mind was the first snow of the season during one of my college years in Iowa and walking across the college campus I was attending during one of these events. There was such a sense of peace and tranquility and the sheer beauty of it all. The other time that really resonates with me was coming out of a late Christmas Eve service when we lived in Denver. The snow had been falling during the service and had changed the look of everything. Again, talk about peace on earth….it was so beautiful and so quiet…true serenity!!

Seattle Snow 1

Seattle Snow 2

Seattle Snow 3

Seattle Snow 4

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Out-Takes: Christmas Hiker In The Woods

From last weeks post, the picture comes from a surprise Christmas Day snow (2017) in the Seattle area. As I’ve mentioned before, when I do a photo shoot I take a plethora of shots and use only the ones that past my personal muster. That being said in picking the snow scene I wanted for last weeks post,  I was reviewing all of the shots from that shoot. I had totally forgotten about these two. My son-in-law and I came across this “hiker in the woods” . We both had a good laugh over it and to this day have no idea who or what put this hiker in place and so thoughtfully decorated him for Christmas. I mentally put them in my “out-takes file” as I wasn’t going to use them for the project I was working on. I did want to share them as I thought they were a good kick-off post for the Holiday Season.

Christmas Hiker 1

Christmas Hiker 2

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Stop and Take a Pause on Your Journey

Day in and day out each of us have so many things going on albeit it physically or mentally. It is usually what needs to get done or what do I need to accomplish today. It can be your mind racing about current issues in your life or stressing about the future….it’s a multitude of ongoing things. When I feel myself getting a bit overwhelmed, I remind myself to pause, take a deep breath and quiet my mind. I like to picture myself hiking one of my favorite trails in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest….the peace and quiet of the forest takes over…….

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Splashes of Color – Pacific Northwest Part Two

As a follow-up to last weeks post of fall colors from the Pacific Northwest, I have attached six shots I took last weekend while we were there. We had a great weekend and from a weather perspective we thought it was perfect (which to us is light rain most of the weekend). That may sound strange, but we haven’t seen rain since early August when our community in Goodyear, Arizona was impacted by a very strong monsoon thunderstorm and now that we are back in Southern California, no rain in sight. So, for us…we loved it…not to mention the time spent with two of or daughters and their husbands…perfect!

During a break in a light drizzle with sun trying to peek out, I went for a hike to capture the attached….

Pacific Northwest Color 1

Pacific Northwest Color 2

Pacific Northwest Color 3

Pacific Northwest Color 4

Pacific Northwest Color 5

Pacific Northwest Color 6

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