Ice

IciclesAfter weeks of drizzle, rain, snow, clouds, and generally yukky weather, we are finally going to get a couple of days of sunshine. I decided it was high time for a little hike what with the Forest Rat gallery opening and Art Walk over. I haven’t taken any photos lately so that I could concentrate on printing and framing.

Deer hunting season opened last weekend so I decided to stay out of the way by avoiding the open woods and instead just wandering along stream beds at the bottom of some ravines. The thermometer in my car read 23 degrees as I hauled out my camera pack and tripod – a little cooler than I expected on a day that was supposed to reach the 50s. The sun was still low in the sky and wasn’t offering much warmth yet. It seemed especially cold down in the ravine where the sun would not reach until later if at all and with all the icy cold water splashing around.

StumpThe water was high from all the rain. There was really too much water to get good photos of the falls. A rushing torrent of water hurtling over a sheer rock edge is impressive when experienced in person, but so much water blows away details that a photograph needs to make it interesting. A frame that is all rushing water just looks like a white smear.

Today I concentrated on the small steps and ledges hidden away from the main force of the water. The freezing temperatures covered the stones along the edge of the stream with a transparent film of ice making it hard to walk without slipping. It also created some interesting shapes as the ice formed around any twigs, logs, or rocks within splashing distance.

I worked my way up stream until I came to a waterfall that some people call “Angel Falls”. The fall is very tall and narrow. The basin at its feet is grown thick with twisted pine trees. If you are far enough back to see it all, then trees block the view. If you get in front of the trees, you are so close that you can’t get a decent shot even with a wide angle lens. So again I spent my time picking out small ice covered splashes here and there around the foot of the big fall.

WaterfallThe fall finally drove me away by raining down ice chips. I’d be intently staring into my viewfinder focusing a shot when I would hear a ka-chunk and then a rattle as ice would break loose from the cliff walls above me and chips from pebble size up to baseballs would come flying down at me. I had to jump in front of the camera to shield it from getting whacked several times before I got the hint and went away.

MDW

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One Response to “Ice”

  1. Suresh Gundappa Says:

    brilliant photos! great colors and composition, thanks for sharing

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