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Archive 2013 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls
  
 
Steve Perry
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p.1 #1 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Congratulations to Steve Perry for winning Feature Thread of the Week with 13 votes - View Previous Winners


This year I took a short trip on the Blue Ridge Parkway and did some waterfallin' along he way. Here are my two favs.

The first is Soco Falls the second is Crabtree Falls. I've put the back stories on under the photos. Your comments and feedback are always appreciated








Soco Falls







Crabtree Falls




Aug 17, 2013 at 05:50 PM
Steve Perry
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p.1 #2 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Soco Falls (First image)

The first time I saw Soco Falls in North Carolina I all could say was, “Ahh $#%##, OUCH!”

Sounds strange I know, but when your footing gives way and you end up hooking your leg around a jagged rock to stop a nasty downhill roll, you do take a little damage. Probably more to my ego than body (a laughing 12 year old reminding me of my age didn’t help any).

Fortunately, this happened during scouting and I didn’t have any gear with me (or the right shoes - stupid keens). Needless to say, when I went down the next morning for this image, I had better footwear and exercised a LOT more caution during the descent.

Bleeding extremities aside, I really enjoy this falls. There was a LOT of water this year and they were going like crazy. Plus, there’s just nothing quite like a good double (triple, quadruple?) waterfall to get your juices flowing.

Amazingly, I had the area to myself for 2 hours while I tried different compositions. The trickiest part was actually picking a favorite composition – you could just about throw a camera at this one and get a cool shot.

This image was actually a blend of bout 4 different shots - it was amazing how bright the top of the falls was compared to the area where I was standing. I basically had to blend "down" into the valley image by image.

Crabtree Falls - (Second image)

I had seen photos of Crabtree Falls from time to time and I always wanted to stop by and pay it a visit. Plus, with all the water this year I had a feeling it probably looked pretty good.

The falls is located through a (now) closed NPS campground. It looked like it was a pretty cool place at one time, but now it’s just an eerie stroll past overgrown campsites and shuttered buildings. My son was with me and I think the word “creepy” rolled off his tongue about a dozen times.

We made our way to the trail, I think it was about a mile and a half and downhill all the way – so neither of us were looking forward to the climb back up. All I could think was I hope it’s worth it!

I needn’t have worried – once we arrived it was so TOTALLY worth it – it was magnificent and the photo really doesn't do it justice! It just towers above everything and almost seems to create it’s own light as the water dances off the nearly jet black rocks. I was really excited and was able to try several different compositions before it got too dark to shoot - this one being my favorite. Despite the fading light and uphill hike back, I was smiling all the way.

This one is at leaf 4 or 5 different shots blended for exposure. There was a huge range of light between the top and bottom.



Aug 17, 2013 at 05:51 PM
kwilliam8
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p.1 #3 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Steve, fantastic images! Great compositions and great work on the exposures. Your adventures were definitely worth it. Btw, I would not have guessed that these images (especially the second) were taken out east. Fantastic work!
Keith W.



Aug 17, 2013 at 06:33 PM
stanparker
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p.1 #4 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Steve, I always enjoy your work and these certainly continue that trend. They are excellent and worth all your effort. I've been to Crabtree, but never knew of Soco. I guess I'll give it a try next time.


Aug 17, 2013 at 08:27 PM
tjny
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p.1 #5 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Steve your second image is superlative, love the choice of SS, purity of tones in water and greens and fine detail in highlights and shadows.


Aug 17, 2013 at 09:54 PM
Jeffrey
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p.1 #6 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Two excellent images, Steve. Really good control of the light and presentation processing.


Aug 17, 2013 at 10:18 PM
JimT57
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p.1 #7 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Great Shots! The back stories are great too, Especially how the shots were made. When you say "blended" are they HDR or some other technique?


Aug 17, 2013 at 10:26 PM
oldrattler
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p.1 #8 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


kwilliam8 wrote:
Steve, fantastic images! Great compositions and great work on the exposures. Your adventures were definitely worth it. Btw, I would not have guessed that these images (especially the second) were taken out east. Fantastic work!
Keith W.


+ 1. Great work, Jim



Aug 17, 2013 at 10:30 PM
groob
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p.1 #9 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


These are beautiful. Makes me ready to go back during the fall.


Aug 17, 2013 at 11:10 PM
Butch Braniger
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p.1 #10 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


I was blown away by # 1 and then I saw # 2! Outstanding. Thank you for sharing.


Aug 17, 2013 at 11:53 PM
 

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BostonGreg
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p.1 #11 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


AMAZING! Absolutely gorgeous images, thanks for sharing. Would you mind sharing what lens and strength ND you used? I just picked up the Canon 17Ltse and it's a wonderfully sharp lens but unable to use ND filters. I'm considering purchasing the new Zeiss 15mm.

Really great work, reminds me of the spot in Bar Harbor Maine where I got engaged



Aug 18, 2013 at 12:47 AM
Karl Witt
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p.1 #12 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Don't know where to start here Steve............I have several emotions and expressions running through my mind, a bit overwhelmed

I find it a great visual thrill to see such great shadow depth and see such vibrant color and rich colors in one shot and then to see the clean whites in the falls I think even richens up the hues and colors more in a natural way. #1 seems to have more warmth in the greens and overall, certainly a fascinating image to view in the way your presented it!

Gosh darn #2 is special! The coal black rocks with a very deep true green supportive foliage is a treat Again the purity of the falls accentuates the colors in the image. Love it!

So a newbie like me sees by exif you shot and blended at 14mm.............how do you eliminate distortion? I've never blended images yet but I can see a necessity to learn to put comps like this together!

Undecided so both are #1 for me
Karl



Aug 18, 2013 at 03:13 AM
Steve Perry
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p.1 #13 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Thanks so much for the kind words and feedback - it means a lot to me.

@Keith - Thanks, and yeah, they both rival some of the falls I've seen out west, esp crabtree. They're amazing to see in person.

@Stan - Definitely give Soco a try - but watch your step The falls is located between Cherokee and Maggie Valley (way closer to Maggie V.)

@tjny - Thanks

@Jeffery - Thanks

@JimT - Thanks - The shots were manually blended together. I'm not a big HDR software fan, so I use layers and masks in photoshop to (try) and get a more natural look.

@Oldrattler - Thanks

@Groob - Thanks - I'm with you I can't wait for fall, I'm itching to get back down there too.

@Butch - Thanks so much

@BostonGreag - Thanks No ND - it was REALLY dark both times. Soco was first thing in the AM (actually had to wait to shoot - I started off at 10 second exposures), and Crabtree was in the evening. I used a Nikon 14-24 with a Fotodiox Adapter and a Polarizer for both shots. (I'm actually in the process of doing a review on that setup, I'll post it here if I get it done before this thread dies )

@Karl - Thanks so much of the kind words. First, you don't strike me as a newbie - you post lots of stuff I'm jealous of As for the photo - In this case I didn't use multiple images for stacking, it was for exposure, so no stacking problems due to distortion. At 14mm you do get some distortion in even a single image though. For Soco, I actually didm't do any more than LR's distortion correction. For Crabtree, I did some correction in photoshop using the transform tool's perspective option.



Aug 18, 2013 at 02:34 PM
nikon65
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p.1 #14 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Fantastic Steve !!!

Todd



Aug 18, 2013 at 03:04 PM
NCAndy
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p.1 #15 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Steve, great photos. I'm ashamed to say these falls are in my backyard and I haven't been to either. I keep telling myself once my daughter goes off to college I'll get out more! Thanks for posting these wonderful shots.


Aug 18, 2013 at 03:06 PM
fingerda
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p.1 #16 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Steve, these are great photos. The wife and I have a vacation planned for the Ashville area in October. Will put these 2 destinations on my list. Thanks for the post.
Dave



Aug 18, 2013 at 03:37 PM
ramdisk
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p.1 #17 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


great captures Steve, I like them both


Aug 18, 2013 at 03:38 PM
rpope
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p.1 #18 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Both of these are gorgeous Steve. I especially like the first shot. I know of a similar falls in the White Mountains of NH. Excellent work!

Rich



Aug 18, 2013 at 04:04 PM
JimT57
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p.1 #19 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Thanks for the reply, Steve. I am a big fan of your web site and these posts. Both are inspiring!


Aug 18, 2013 at 05:42 PM
helenica
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p.1 #20 · A Couple BRP Waterfalls


Fabulous shots!


Aug 18, 2013 at 06:33 PM
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