Archive for the 'Copeland' category

Catch-up #4: Deceptive Waterfalls

Jan 01 2015 Published by under Autumn, Copeland, Wild Basin

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I realized this summer while hiking to Copeland, Calypso, and Ouzel Falls that my photographs of the waterfalls are deceptive. I go out of my way to avoid including people in any of my photographs, so they provide the impression of wilderness and isolation. This is made easier by starting in the pre-dawn, when most people are still asleep, but sometimes it is difficult to adjust reality to what I want. This photo, for example, looks as it could be taken miles deep in the trackless wilderness without another person for miles. In reality, there was a loud and overweight tourist standing atop the stone just to the right, taking selfies with her phone. I lowered the tripod slightly so that the stone on the left would hide another woman sitting on a distant rock painting watercolors. There were long pauses in my shooting while I stood in the stream and waiting for one group or another to wander aimlessly through the frame, quickly pressing the shutter during the clear gaps.
These photos were taken a quarter mile from a large parking lot and trailhead, so fully packed on this autumn day with people come to see the changing leaves that I was called to as soon as I stepped off the trail and began walking to my car, in hopes that I was leaving and opening up a space. My photos are deceptive because they never show the impact of the people who come to use this area, myself included. As the population of the Front Range continues to explode, I’ll have to be more and more careful when I take my photographs to preserve the illusion of wilderness.

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Backlog #2

Jun 22 2014 Published by under Copeland, Spring, Wild Basin

Copeland Spring 2013 #7

Copeland Spring 2013 Gallery

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First Returns

Dec 13 2011 Published by under Copeland, Wild Basin, Winter

Copeland Winter Gallery

I made the first return visit to a waterfall today, starting with the same three that I did back in August. Just as I’d hoped, the changing seasons had completely changed the personality of the falls. In the summer, Copeland Falls were riotous flows of water over granite boulders and swarmed with tourists. Today, I could only find one of the drops from the summer and it was, of course, covered with snow and ice.

Today’s visit to the falls brought to the fore a flaw in my project. While the calendar says we have another week and a half of ‘Autumn’ the falls I visited today have certainly jumped seasons into Winter. I might have to reimagine this project to allow for what seasons are really like in the high mountains of Colorado.

A great advantage to the winter snows and ice that encased and covered the falls is that it allows whole new perspectives for photography. Where three months ago I fell into a deep pool while trying to shoot a unique angle, today there is a snow bridge across the river that held my weight.

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Not an omen.

Aug 23 2011 Published by under Calypso, Copeland, Ouzel, Summer, Wild Basin

It’s a good thing I don’t believe in omens.Ouzel Falls at Dawn

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