Cascade Springs, Utah Scenic Byway, Post #1

Cascade Springs - Main Spring Area (773S3) HDNR

Cascade Springs is a large artesian spring north of the Mt. Timpanogos Wilderness Area and along the Alpine Loop Scenic Backway. Seven million gallons of water a day flow down a series of limestone terraces and pools among lush vegetation. The short half-mile nature trail wraps around the natural springs and streams with bridges, boardwalks, and paved pathways. Crystal clear waters make it easy to spot trout that inhabit the pools. Interpretive signs along the pathways explain the geology of this small natural wonder. This is an enjoyable destination for families and hikers of all ages. Ample parking is available and public vault restrooms are onsite.

The above text is from Heber Valley Attractions

 This was my favorite Autumn spot this year. The lead image that follow are all from the last week of September or first week of October 2022.

Feature Image Details

Focus Stacking

As usual on my landscape images, this was focused stacked. That means I took at least one shot of the foreground, middle ground, and background to keep everything sharp. Then I blended them together. 

This was a very easy image to blend because everything is in one plane. I did the blending manually. For more complex blending, I use Helicon Focus. Problems happen when things move. The floating leaves are moving, but not fast enough to matter. The closer things are and especially when objects are in different planes the harder things are to blend.

Additional Images 

Cascade Springs - Main Spring Area (455S1) HDNR

Cascade Springs - Main Spring Area (920S1) HDNR

You can walk all the trails easily in 30 minutes. But I fell in love with this spot and spend several hours on each of three trips. 

Morning light is different than afternoon light. And on one day I spent hours photographing a pair of moose that made an appearance for at least an hour one afternoon. Images coming up.


  • Polarizers help. They lengthen the shutter speed giving smoother, more pleasant-looking water. 
  • Focus stacking and longer shutter speeds necessitate use of a tripod. But if you goal is just a pleasant hike, that’s OK too. This is a beautiful place just to see and enjoy. 
  • Nearly always, bright overcast is better for moving water. Second best is shade. Sometimes weak light filtering through makes a dramatic image. I have an example in a subsequent post. But full is nearly always a killer. 
  • Notice the reflection in the lead image. Reflection shots are best if the water is in the shade but sunlight is hitting the reflected object, in this case distant trees.


Those interested in my equipment and recommendations can find it here: Mish’s Equipment List.

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Mike “Mish” Shedlock

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