The Calm Before...Spray Park, Mt. Rainier National Park, Washington, USA.
October 1, 2010. © Copyright Richard Mitchell,
Touching Light Photography - all rights reserved.
This photo was taken at the end of a long 24-hour "shooting spree" the beginning of October 2010. I had a crying need to spend some time in the woods, and to spend time listening and seeing and thinking. My wife Diane has been amazingly supportive of my passion for photography, and let me head off for 24 hours of continuous photography. I ended my 24 hour sprint by hiking up to Spray Park, via the Mowich Lake entrance to Mt. Rainier National Park, a lesser used and lesser known entrance than the more popular Sunrise and Paradise entrances.
From Mowich Lake, the trail descends pleasantly through the woods around Mowich Lake, crossing the aptly named "Wonderland Trail" that completely encircles the great mountain. For a while, the trail is kind, then it begins its ascent up switchbacks, many with log-reinforced stair-steps. Leveling again, the trail heads towards Spray Falls, then begins its final ascent to the sub-alpine meadows of Spray Park. It is always a relief to see the clearing forest, the easing trail, and the opening sky as one approaches the top of the ascent - especially with a 50-pound backpack full of camera gear!
I had originally intended to stay until sunset, but on this evening, the exhaustion of staying awake for 36 hours was starting to hit, and I had arrived at Spray Park tired from the climb, and carrying far too little water and food for the hike. (note to me - next time, bring your water pump or your iodine tablets!). I decided to leave the Park about an hour before sunset, and took this photo near to the time of my departure from the glorious meadows of Spray Park. What a beautiful Fall day! The golds and reds of autumn were as clear as the air, and few people remained in the area as I set up for this shot. A beautiful way to end a full day of photography!
Technical Details: Canon 5D Mark II, Canon EF17-40mm f/4L lens at 26mm, ISO100, 1/15 sec. at f/16.
This photograph is not
in the public domain and may not be used in electronic,
print, or any other form, without advance permission from Richard