My wife and I spent part of our Saturday afternoon hiking down to a waterfall in Colditz Cove State Natural Area that I had wanted to visit for some time.
Once I had found my composition there were only a few intermittent clouds in the sky. I had just a few moments of cloud cover to take the main shot of the falls. The cloud cover created beautifully soft light to make what I believe is a more pleasing image in this case.
With my wide shot of the entire 63' waterfall in the can it was time to hike down to the base of the falls for a few detail shots. The spray was intense and made it difficult to capture a clean shot. I would usually go a little longer on shutter duration to smooth out the water even more, but I found that the 4 second shutter I chose was pushing the limits before the front of the lens was completely coated with water. This is one of the primary reasons I stick to my weather sealed lenses when shooting this type of work. My best weather sealed glass is the 16-35 f/2.8L III and the 70-200 f/2.8L II IS (both of which were used in this trip). I also brought but did not use my 24-105 f/4L IS. That lens is not as well sealed as the ones that due to the construction of the lens where the barrel pushes out when zooming. Not used on this trip, but another fantastically sealed lens worthy of mention is my beloved 35 f/1.4L II.
I wanted one more shot of the falls before hiking back out and was going for something more abstract. I think that the higher volume of water through the falls makes for a superior wide shot, but can make detail shots more difficult. Too much water and not enough rock can make the shot lack contrast. Contrast not just in tonality, but also between the juxtaposition of smooth water and the sharp textures of the rocks underneath.
The greater working distance of the longer and more compressed focal length still did not help much with the spray coming off the falls, especially when the wind kicked up. I was able to push my exposure up to 5 seconds, but still had to wipe the polarizer down on the front of the lens after every shot.
Many thanks to my incredibly supportive and loving wife Emily. She means the world to me and I love it when she comes out on these hiking adventures! Thank you for stopping by and reading the blog today. Until next time, good luck and happy shooting.
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