McWay Waterfall into the sand

Lenny La Rue, IPA

Sacramento, United States

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Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park: This is an 80-foot waterfall that drops from Big Sur’s granite cliffs into the sand, as seen from the Overlook Trail. The beach is accessible by water only, tho many dummies have tried to get there from the trail. To be honest, assess from the trail COULD be made possible if the park service ever deems it OK. But the land immediately under the trail is inhabited by condors as well as delicate native plants. I still need to see my images more closely but between Cathy and I, I think we got some shots of one of the condors.

Getting the shot I wanted was quite the challenge. To get the waterfall ‘frozen’ was easy with multiple camera settings. But to get it with the beautiful ‘flowing texture’ of slower shutter speeds either cause flare from the sunlit portions of the beach or excessive digital noise when aiming directly at the water. The air SEEMED clear but there was enough mist in it to make many shots look excessively hazy at slower shutter speeds. I looked at the official photograph of the falls from the Big Sur website and that photographer didn’t even try, preferring to just wait for good overhead light and blow out most of the image from the heavy white surf. I finally settled for three distinct shots of the waterfall, the first being the one seen here with the water basically frozen in its fall. The second was the entire Saddle Rock Beach area showing the coastline. The third was the tighter telephoto shot of as little more than the falls as I could get so I could control camera speed and aperture with some vague sense of knowing what I was doing. LOL!

There were people all along the trail with both disposable cameras and compact digitals who were trying to get pictures of this waterfall, none of which had as much trouble as I had; none of which came close to what a DSLR can capture either. But next time I’ll have a better filter setup to make the shot as close to perfect as possible.

Artwork Comments

  • LindaR
  • Lenny La Rue, IPA
  • gemlenz
  • cld295
  • handprintz
  • solareclips~Julie  Alexander
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