Burney Falls

We heard, "You just gotta go to Burney Falls!  You just GOTTA go to Burney Falls!" So, we went to Burney Falls.  President Teddy Roosevelt described Burney Falls as the 8th Wonder of the World.  It was declared a National Landmark in December of 1954.  The falls are part of a state park located in the Cascade Range.

This is your first view of Burney Falls.  Turns out it is not even the best view, by far.  You can hear the roar of the waterfall as soon as you open your car door.  Just 150 feet later you see this image.  WOW!

There is a viewpoint at the top looking down and across the waterfall.  Maybe that should state waterfall(S).  My challenge was the incredible dynamic range as the right side of the waterfall was already in bright sunlight while the left side was almost dark in shade.  I tried a partial ND with and without a polarizing filter (tricky).  It is easy to get the sky all wompy-wacko when you use both.

Finally, the combination of filters gave me a fighting chance for some post editing to make it all look right.  The waterfall is listed at 129 feet in height and more than 100 million gallons of water a day fall over the rocks or seep through!  The water comes from underground springs that surface a short distance upstream from the falls.  The area is composed of a lot of porous basalt which retains rainwater and snow melt in an underground reservoir.  This waterfall is not affected much by seasonal changes in water availability.

Tom gave up on shooting the whole scene.  The dynamic range was just too much and he did not want to fool with filters.  Sometimes the fall back idea that problems can be fixed in post just does not hold up.  He quickly moved to shooting detail shots.  After post processing we realized that each of us had settled on a very different white balance.  The scene, as he saw it was much cooler than I remember it.  So, as not to jar your brain by interspersing the difference, I have chosen to put mine on together followed by his images.  There is no right or wrong white balance.

So, here you have the secret . . . Barney Falls is really hundreds of waterfalls all rolled into one!  Each of these baby waterfalls is seeping through basalt.  The water is not just trickling down from the two large waterfalls.  This phenomenon is photographic ecstasy as you can stand for hours looking for interesting compositions, textures, colors, and more.

I, personally, loved the strings of water seeping through the basalt rock that can be captured before they hit the rocks.

Just so you know in advance . . . a warning . . . finding these spots of mini waterfalls can become addictive.  We would give up lunch to find another composition that was just right.

OK, it is Tom's turn.  In addition to the change in white balance you will immediately see how different his 'style' is from mine.  It is so much fun to look at his images as he gives them to me to post.  He surely sees the world with different eyes.

Thanks for joining us.