Cataract Falls

On Jan 26, 2016, I visited the Mt Tamalpias watershed area near Fairfax, in Marin County, CA. Imagine climbing up a hillside, along a stream that was running fast and loud due to recent rain.  Now, imagine the trail to be 2 1/2 miles in and out with a 1,300 foot elevation gain, 750 feet over the first mile.  That combination meant the stream was full of waterfalls and cataracts.   The banks of the stream were hard rock surfaces covered with coastal redwoods, moss and ferns.  It was absolutely spectacular. The trek was difficult but, was well worth the effort. 

For my fellow photographers, the stream ran along an east-west access.  The January sun rose behind the waterfalls casting some strong light in a few areas but the sun mostly was obscured by the canopy.  The light, though bright, was diffuse. Still, the ferns, moss and rocks glistened.  Perhaps, as the sun set, more light would have fallen directly on the waterfalls but I didn’t have time to stay and find out.  If I make another trip, I will plan it for afternoon.

I hope you enjoy the images.  Enlarged copies of the images can be found in my online gallery:  Cataract Falls






Follow Where the Light Leads

As photographers, we are admonished to wait for the perfect light or, as a studio photographer, to set up the perfect light.  It’s good advice, but not always practical.  Sometimes you find yourself at a location you’d like to shoot and walk away disappointed because there are interesting subjects but bad lighting.  I have been working on turning that admonishment around and searching where the light leads me; finding subjects where the light presents them.  Those opportunities even avail themselves in very diffuse light.   We just have to open our mind to creativity when thinking about light.


Untitled, California State Rail Museum, Sacramento, CA, JAN 2016


Untitled, California State Rail Museum, Sacramento, CA, JAN 2016

Last weekend, I visited the California State Rail Museum.  If you are a railroad buff, there are a lot of great things to see.  While there, I set 2 objectives: learn to use my cell phone camera more effectively and to look for subjects made interesting by the museum lighting.  I did OK with the first objective but didn’t advance my skill as much as I’d have liked.  I did learn that I have a little control over depth of field though not a lot.  I did find interesting subjects to shoot.  The museum lighting was very good and the light painted details in interesting ways.  I’ve included a few examples for you to enjoy.

A Brass Valve

A Brass Valve, California State Rail Museum, Sacramento, CA, JAN 2016

A View of the Underbelly

A View of the Underbelly, California State Rail Museum, Sacramento, CA, JAN 2016

Some New Images from Old Shoots

I spent a winter afternoon cleaning up and organizing my photo library.  While going through the library, I found a few gems that I had overlooked before; always a pleasant surprise. 


Rivulet, Lower Geyser Basin, Yellowstone, FEB 2013

Hot Waterfall in Winter

Hot Waterfall in Winter, Midway Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park, FEB 2013


Rivulet and Hot Waterfall in Winter were taken at Yellowstone 3 years ago when I attended Cindy Goeddel’s Yellowstone Yurt Tour.   It was an amazing photo adventure that allowed me to see Yellowstone in the dead of winter.  Rivulet was taken near the Lower Geyser Basin.  Hot Waterfall is runoff from hot springs near Midway Geyser Basin. 


Snowy Egret

Snowy Egret, William Pond Park, Sacramento, CA, NOV 2015

Snowy Egret was taken at William Pond Park, near Sacramento, last November.