Starved Rock State Park, Illinois: Kaskaskia Canyon and French Canyon Waterfalls

Starved Rock State Park is in Utica, Illinois. The park is about 2 hours away from Chicago.

My favorite times to visit, in order, are Autumn, Winter, and Spring. Summer is too crowded and the waterfall flows are typically minimum.

I have covered the area in previous posts extensively and will wrap up Starved Rock in two posts, this being the second to last.

Kaskaskia Canyon Waterfall

I took that image hiking with a friend this past Autumn. I have been to this spot at least a dozen times but this past Autumn is the first time I made what I would label a good shot.

Feature Image Details

I used a Canon Canon 24-105MM F4 L Lens for this image.

Exposure was for 4 seconds at F16 at ISO 125. My focal length was 58mm.

I used a polarizer which added about two stops of exposure while also cutting down glare.

Without the polarizer, the exposure would have been about 1 second. Thus, you need a tripod for this shot, if you want nice looking water flow.

French Canyon

French Canyon is another canyon I have struggled with. It takes well above average Autumn rainfall before there is significant flow.

Bright overcast conditions are also a necessity to not burn out the tree highlights above the waterfall. This all came together for me this past Autumn.

My exposure was nearly the same as the featured image.

Exposure was for 4 seconds at F16 at ISO 160. My focal length was 40mm.

Once again I used a polarizer which added about two stops of exposure while also cutting down glare.

Key Tip

I seldom use a polarizers to intensify a blue sky, but that is how most people use them.

Rather, I use them on cloudy days to reduce glare. The difference is amazing.

Nearby – Matthiessen State Park Images

Matthiessen State Park is very close and well worth a visit.

  1. Matthiessen State Park – Giant’s Bathtub – Upper Dells
  2. Matthiessen State Park – Lake Falls – Upper Dells
  3. Matthiessen State Park – Cascade Falls – Lower Dells
  4. Matthiessen State Park – Lower Dells – Autumn
  5. Matthiessen State Park – Lower Dells – Intermittent Waterfall

Starved Rock State Park Articles

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2 thoughts on “Starved Rock State Park, Illinois: Kaskaskia Canyon and French Canyon Waterfalls

  1. Hi Mish – Been following you for years. Thanks for all your views (thoughts and pics) Lived in the Chicago area for 50 years (St. Charles with $20K RE taxes) and then Scottsdale for 8 (4K). Now Santa Fe (3.5K). Looking forward to see your pictures when you get out west – you have a great eye. A year or so ago I sent you info on Bisti Badlands south of Farmington NM. Check it out again. Your camera will never stop clicking! Now that I’ve lived in Santa Fe for over a year, it’s surprises me how few people have ever heard of Bisti. One drawback – got used to no snow in Scottsdale – had to buy a shovel here. Ken

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