Horsetail Fall Firefall + RP

And a few minutes earlier. This one looks a little Velvia-ish. So much leeway these days.

On the 4th try over about 5 years, I finally got it – 2016-02-18. But I’ve posted this before – if that’s cheating I’ll delete it. (I did re-do it from the raw file, with slight improvement I think.) I was planted in Galen Rowell’s old tripod marks, in the little clearing north of the parking lot. Dozens of people next to the lot in easy chairs, 3-4 where I was.

Specific Feedback Requested

All comments welcome!

Technical Details

Canon 5D3, 100-400 II at 188, f/5.6, ISO 800, 1/1500 sec to stop the fine detail of the spray, although there wasn’t much. Tripod. Not a lot done in raw conversion – shadows and highlights and a bit of clarity. Denoise in PS, cloned out the tips of 2 branches on the left, darkened the area left of the fall and brightened subtly to the right. Full frame with slight crop from right.



It was probably 10 years earlier I made my first of several attempts - and from the exact same location. One of the particular years it was a zoo - and of course has been a zoo ever since - so much so that they literally have limited parking and access to keep the crowds down. So eventually I quit going…

But like you I’m sure, I’m so glad to have one of these of my own! This is a great capture of the phenomena. Hard to say without seeing what you started with, but I think you have room to open up the shadows a bit more without introducing anything bad. Just a bump in the overall exposure maybe? But of course a matter of personal preference.

An icon for sure!


Thanks, @Lon_Overacker! Seeing it here, on a light BG, it does look dark. Definitely have the overhead to lighten it, or dig out more dark detail – in fact I darkened it for more drama, but tried to hold some detail in the dark areas. I was trying to hide a pine tree that was intruding on the right. Also found another exposure a few minutes earlier that I like more. I’ll post it for comparison tomorrow. I’m pleased enough to have given up on trying to do better here – I’m allergic to crowds.

Would love to see yours!!

Diane, the glow in the clouds and especially in the Falls looks great. The high contrast in the original post helps set of the glows. However, I do like the extra lightness in the shadow regions of post #2 and prefer the shape of the cloud in it also.

I really like your second image, Diane. I have always wanted to get this but like you, not a fan of crowds at all…nice that you have this in your portfolio.

Another vote for the 2nd image. Agree, the cloud is better too!

Looking back at mine… it’s actually from 2005 and taken with 4x5 on Velvia with complete blocked up shadows. I haven’t looked at my original film, perhaps there is some rescue in there somewhere, but not inclined to go back and check…

Also included the small crowd at the Galen Rowell clearing… Any photographer will cringe at my tripod setup! I mean who extends the center column like that? really? Ok, I’m tall, nearl 6’4" and focusing and adjusting a view camera when looking almost straight up… well, this was how it all ended up…

Some Topaz DeNoise sharpened things up nicely. But still, zero shadow detail. oh well. Thanks for asking!

Another vote for the second image. Well composed and beautiful color. I can do without the crowds.