Cascade Springs, Utah Scenic Byway, Post #4 Moose

Cascade Springs - Moose (618S3) 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.

These images were taken mid-afternoon, not when one would normally expect to see moose. But there they were, a pair of them, one bull and one cow. 

The bull moose was kicking up water like mad. I asked someone about this behavior and was told the bull was attempting to get the cow’s attention. She didn’t seem too care too much. 

Feature Image Details

Discussion

I used a higher ISO and a more open F-stop to stop the motion. It was a bright overcast day which is perfect light. 

My longest lens is a Canon 100-400mm lens and it was where it normally is, that being the trunk of my car. It’s barely suitable for wildlife images and it’s heavy so I only carry it when I think I will use it. 

On this trip I also spent a long time at Silver Lake. Many photographers were there with enormous 600mm, fast lenses hoping to get moose shots. The moose were so far off in the distance I could barely see them even at 400mm.

But here they were right in front of me. I took some images with a 24-105mm lens and then went back to the car for my 100-400 mm lens. It was more than adequate.

The moose were so close I shot most of these images at 200 mm. A handful of other people were around taking pictures with their cell phones or smaller cameras.

Additional Images 

Cascade Springs - Moose (625A) HDNR

Cascade Springs - Moose (224S4) HDNR

Cascade Springs - Moose (232)

Cascade Springs - Moose (304A) HD

Cascade Springs - Moose (88S1) HDNR

The image immediately above was taken with my 24-105 mm lens at 105 mm. When I was confident that I had a good shot, I went back to my car for my longer lens but assumed the moose would be gone when I got back. 

It was a good decision. The moose moved even close to the boardwalk and 200 mm was easily adequate. 

Someone asked how close we were to the moose.

I estimate 30-50 feet for the closest images. That is probably in danger territory but the moose approached us on the boardwalk.

They stayed close for well over an hour. The bull followed the cow wherever she went.

Equipment

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

Previous Related Posts

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Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Cascade Springs, Utah Scenic Byway, Post #3

 

Cascade Springs - Stream (26S1) NR

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.

Continue reading “Cascade Springs, Utah Scenic Byway, Post #3”

Cascade Springs, Utah Scenic Byway, Post #2

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.

Continue reading “Cascade Springs, Utah Scenic Byway, Post #2”

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.

Continue reading “Cascade Springs, Utah Scenic Byway, Post #1”

Zion National Park – Lower Emerald Pool Waterfall Spray

I finally finished editing Autumn 2021 images but still have many more to post. This one is a return to Lower Emerald Pools one the most assessible places in the park.

Note: There is a lot more detail in the spray on the actual image than the JPEG above. Also conversion to JPEG shifted the blue sky a bit in a manner not true to the image.
Continue reading “Zion National Park – Lower Emerald Pool Waterfall Spray”

Zion National Park – Left Fork Trail – The Slide

This is the third and final post for this second trip on the Zion Subway trail, officially called the “Left Fork” Trail.

It’s a very rugged trail, about 9 miles round trip scrambling over boulders and crossing the river many, many times. The scrambling and length of the trail makes it a difficult hike, much more so than the Narrows trail which I have written about. The first decent and even more so final assent back up is brutally steep.  ….

Continue reading “Zion National Park – Left Fork Trail – The Slide”

Zion National Park – Left Fork Trail – Subway Entrance

 

It’s been a very busy Autumn for me. I was on the road taking pictures from late September through mid-November. I have lots of images to share and just finished editing them all.

Some of my favorites were close by.

I hiked what is known as the “Subway” route, officially called the “Left Fork” Trail. It’s the second time I have done the trip.

It’s a very rugged trail, about 9 miles round trip scrambling over boulders and crossing the river many, many times. The scrambling and length of the trail makes it a difficult hike, much more so than the Narrows trail which I have written about. The first decent and even more so final assent back up is brutally steep.  ….

Continue reading “Zion National Park – Left Fork Trail – Subway Entrance”

Bond Falls, Michigan UP, Autumn

I took these shots of Bond Falls about a year ago on my final farewell Autumn photography tour of the Midwest.

Bond Falls is a scenic waterfall created as the middle branch of the Ontonagon river tumbles over a thick belt of fractured rock, dividing it into numerous small cascades. Roadside parking and picnic tables are available near the top of the falls. An accessible boardwalk with six viewing locations.

It takes four things to get a good Autumn image of Bond Falls: Good color, good flows, good technique, clouds. Images of Bond Falls do not look good in the sun.

Bond Falls


Continue reading “Bond Falls, Michigan UP, Autumn”

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore Chapel Falls in Autumn

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is one of my favorite spots on Lake Superior. It is a fantastic park for hiking. The waterfalls are exceptional after a Spring or Summer rain.

Chapel Falls is an easy 2.5 mile round-trip hike in the Chapel Basin trailhead.


Continue reading “Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore Chapel Falls in Autumn”

Starved Rock State Park, Illinois: St. Louis Canyon Canyon and Wildcat 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.

St. Louis 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. Continue reading “Starved Rock State Park, Illinois: St. Louis Canyon Canyon and Wildcat Canyon Waterfalls”

Mish’s Garden: Waterlily Colchicums in Autumn

The ‘Waterlily’ Colchicum is a hybrid resulting from a cross of Colchicum autumnale ‘Alboplenum’ and Colchicum speciosum ‘Album’. The flowers resemble a water lily, hence the name. The fully double, lilac-pink flowers bloom in late summer to early fall on naked stems to 6″ tall.

Up to two-foot tall Leaves appear in the Spring and die back in the summer. The flowers appear out of nowhere, with no leaves in early Autumn. I plant them in beds with low growing groundcovers to add a touch of green leaves.

These are one of my favorite flowers. Deer generally don’t touch them.

I used a Canon 100MM Macro F 2.8 Lens for all of these images.

Following are more colchicum images.

Continue reading “Mish’s Garden: Waterlily Colchicums in Autumn”

Mish’s Garden: Crabapple Trees and Ornamental Grasses in Autumn

Featured Image Details

We have three crabapple trees in the front that have red berries and one in the back with yellow berries. This is the one will yellow berries. It looks like floating eyeballs.

I shot it from below, looking almost straight up.

I used a Canon 24-105MM F4 L Lens at 47mm, ISO 200 for 1/60 second at F18.

Following are images of the front yard.

Continue reading “Mish’s Garden: Crabapple Trees and Ornamental Grasses in Autumn”

Mish’s Garden: Colorful Japanese Maples in Autumn

Feature Image Details

That is what our backyard looks like at the peak of Autumn. The maples turn late. It was early November.

I used a Canon 24-105MM F4 L Lens at 35mm for 20 seconds at F16.

It was after sunset.

In a rarity for me, I used fill flash to light the trees. The flash, the ambient light, and the light inside the house were all similar. Continue reading “Mish’s Garden: Colorful Japanese Maples in Autumn”

Matthiessen State Park – Lake Falls – Upper Dells

Matthiessen State Park is located in central LaSalle County, approximately 4 miles south of Utica and 3 miles east of Oglesby.

I took the images on this page on the last possible day this year. A big snowstorm hit the area the next day, and all the leaves blew off in the accompanying windstorm. Continue reading “Matthiessen State Park – Lake Falls – Upper Dells”

Parfrey’s Glen State Natural Area Waterfall, Merrimac, Wisconsin

Those looking for a nice weekend or day trip from Chicago, Northern Illinois, or Wisconsin should check out the natural features near Baraboo, Wisconsin.
This is my second post is on Parfrey’s Glen State Natural Area.

Parfrey’s Glen is Wisconsin’s first State Natural area and is unquestionably the most visited state natural area outside of Devil’s Lake State Park. The glen is open to the public from 6am to 8pm. At its uppermost part, the glen reaches a depth of nearly 100 feet and embraces a mountain-type stream flowing through its floor. The Glen’s walls are sandstone embedded with pebbles and boulders of quartzite. This quartzite is conglomerate, sometimes called a “plum pudding” stone. The sandstone layers represent ancient sandy beach. Because the Glen has many unusual and rare flora, visitors must stay on the trail from the lower parking area to the top of the glen and retrace their steps back. The Path is about 0.8 miles long.

In the last 20 years, the glen has been changed drastically by powerful floods. The glen has gone through various closures, repairs and upgrades in recent years. The bridges and trail known to hikers in the 80s and early 90s are now gone. The trail was again damaged by flooding in 2010 and closed until the fall of 2011. The 2011 repairs only went as far as the gorge itself. The expectation of further floods has caused the DNR to curb spending on repairs within the gorge proper. Hikers wishing to continue up to the waterfall must navigate a stream and rough stone. The steps leading up to the old viewing area and the viewing area are also damaged. Steps are missing and a section of the viewing area is now partly collapsed. Use caution if you plan to go beyond the marked trail.  Visitors may hike to the pool below the waterfall, but not go around or beyond the falls.

The hike to the small waterfall featured in this article is at the end of the trail, about 0.8 miles each way. I would rate the trail as easy despite the cautions above. There is a bit of scrambling over rocks, but seriously, it is not as difficult as it may seem from the above description. Bring the kids. They will love it.

This is a fee area with pay boxes. They do check, frequently. Buy a pass or you are highly likely to get a ticket.

Feature Image Details

For the feature image, I used a Canon 24-105MM F4 L Lens at ISO 125, 20mm, 13 seconds at F22 with a circular polarizer to increase the shutter time.

It had just started to drizzle when I took a set of images.

Parfrey’s Glen Tips

  • This park photographs best on a cloudy day.
  • Perfect conditions would be bright overcast, with little wind, with wet rocks just after a rain.
  • Light drizzle works very well is there is little wind.
  • Rain saturates the leaves as well as the colors on the rocks.
  • Use a polarizer to remove glare.

Polarizer Tips

People misuse polarizers. I generally do not use them on sunny days, especially if I have a lot of sky in the image. Why? The polarizer will darken the sky in a very non-uniform manner that is hard to correct even in Photoshop.

I often use polarizers on cloudy days and did so on these images. Here are more images from the glen.

Second Image

Equipment List

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

Other Parfrey’s Glen Images

I have four additional images of the quartzite and sandstone bluff in my first post on Parfrey’s Glen State Natural Area, Merrimac, Wisconsin.

Nearby Locations

Devil’s Lake State Park, Pewits Next, Ableman’s Gorge, and the International Crane Foundation are close by.

Pewit’s Nest

  1. Pewits Nest, Wisconsin State Natural Area, Lower Falls
  2. Pewits Nest, Wisconsin State Natural Area, Upper Falls

Ableman’s Gorge

  1. Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 1
  2. Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 2

I have an entire series on the International Crane Foundation. That link will take you to some of them. Look for those tagged “Mish Moments”.

Click on the link for a search, or better yet, scroll through my Mish Moments Home Page until you find them.

Please Subscribe: Click to Subscribe by Email.

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

You can also follow me on Twitter! I have both an economic forum and a photography forum.

  1. Photography: MishMoments
  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow MishMoments.

Please follow. I do not give away or share email addresses!

Thanks!

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Parfrey’s Glen State Natural Area, Merrimac, Wisconsin

Those looking for a nice weekend or day trip from Chicago, Northern Illinois, or Wisconsin should check out the natural features near Baraboo, Wisconsin.
This post is on Parfrey’s Glen State Natural Area.

Parfrey’s Glen is Wisconsin’s first State Natural area and is unquestionably the most visited state natural area outside of Devil’s Lake State Park. The glen is open to the public from 6am to 8pm. At its uppermost part, the glen reaches a depth of nearly 100 feet and embraces a mountain-type stream flowing through its floor. The Glen’s walls are sandstone embedded with pebbles and boulders of quartzite. This quartzite is conglomerate, sometimes called a “plum pudding” stone. The sandstone layers represent ancient sandy beach. Because the Glen has many unusual and rare flora, visitors must stay on the trail from the lower parking area to the top of the glen and retrace their steps back. The Path is about 0.8 miles long.

In the last 20 years, the glen has been changed drastically by powerful floods. The glen has gone through various closures, repairs and upgrades in recent years. The bridges and trail known to hikers in the 80s and early 90s are now gone. The trail was again damaged by flooding in 2010 and closed until the fall of 2011. The 2011 repairs only went as far as the gorge itself. The expectation of further floods has caused the DNR to curb spending on repairs within the gorge proper. Hikers wishing to continue up to the waterfall must navigate a stream and rough stone. The steps leading up to the old viewing area and the viewing area are also damaged. Steps are missing and a section of the viewing area is now partly collapsed. Use caution if you plan to go beyond the marked trail.  Visitors may hike to the pool below the waterfall, but not go around or beyond the falls.

The hike to the small waterfall at the end of the trail is 0.8 miles each way. I would rate the trail as easy despite the cautions above. There is a bit of scrambling over rocks, but seriously, it is not as difficult as it may seem from the above description. Bring the kids. They will love it.

This is a fee area with pay boxes. They do check, frequently. Buy a pass or you are highly likely to get a ticket.

Feature Image Details

For the feature image, I used a Canon 16-35MM F4 L Lens at ISO 125, 20mm, 4 seconds at F14 with a circular polarizer to saturate the colors.

Parfrey’s Glen Tips

  • This park photographs best on a cloudy day.
  • Perfect conditions would be bright overcast, with little wind, with wet rocks just after a rain.
  • Light drizzle works very well is there is little wind.
  • Rain saturates the leaves as well as the colors on the rocks.
  • Use a polarizer to remove glare.

Polarizer Tips

People misuse polarizers. I generally do not use them on sunny days, especially if I have a lot of sky in the image. Why? The polarizer will darken the sky in a very non-uniform manner that is hard to correct even in Photoshop.

I often use polarizers on cloudy days and did so on these images. Here are more images from the glen.

Additional Images

Equipment List

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

Nearby Locations

Devil’s Lake State Park, Pewits Next, Ableman’s Gorge, and the International Crane Foundation are close by.

Pewit’s Nest

  1. Pewits Nest, Wisconsin State Natural Area, Lower Falls
  2. Pewits Nest, Wisconsin State Natural Area, Upper Falls

Ableman’s Gorge

  1. Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 1
  2. Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 2

I have an entire series on the International Crane Foundation. That link will take you to some of them. Look for those tagged “Mish Moments”.

Click on the link for a search, or better yet, scroll through my Mish Moments Home Page until you find them.

Please Subscribe: Click to Subscribe by Email.

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

You can also follow me on Twitter! I have both an economic forum and a photography forum.

  1. Photography: MishMoments
  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow MishMoments.

Please follow. I do not give away or share email addresses!

Thanks!

Coming up: A second post on Parfrey’s Glen.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Pewits Nest, Wisconsin State Natural Area, Upper Falls

Those looking for a nice weekend or day trip from Chicago, Northern Illinois, or Wisconsin should check out the natural features near Baraboo, Wisconsin.
This post is my second on Pewit’s Nest State Natural Area.

The dominant feature at Pewits Nest is a 30- to 40-foot deep gorge formed during the retreat of the last glacier. Associated with it are Skillet Creek, shaded cliffs, and a northern dry-mesic pine forest. When Glacial Lake Baraboo drained, Skillet Creek cut a narrow canyon through the Cambrian sandstone, forming a series of potholes and low waterfalls. The layers of Cambrian sandstone show that a finer-grained sediment was laid down by the Cambrian seas “inside” the syncline, a process different from that at Parfrey’s Glen where coarser Cambrian conglomerates and sandstones are found in layers. Skillet Creek has a gradient of 38 feet/mile and an average flow of 0.8 cfs. Within and above the gorge grows a narrow fringe of forest dominated by red cedar, white pine, hemlock, and yellow birch.

The hike to the gorge is about 0.9 miles. I would rate it as very easy. There is elevation change to get to the top, but anyone in reasonably good health who can walk will not struggle with this one. The main danger is getting too close to the cliff edge and falling off.

Pewit’s Nest Directions

The DNR link above provides directions and a map of newly closed areas. I cannot tell precisely from the map if I was in a closed area or not when I took the vertical images from above. I do not believe I was in a closed area for the third, horizontal image that shows a tiny portion of the lower falls.

Judging from the map, all the trails appear to be open but there is no longer any access to the gorge itself.

I had never been in the gorge but wanted to do so in the winter if things froze solid enough. That option appears to be gone, at least legally.

Feature Image Details

For the feature image, I used a Canon 24-105MM F4 L Lens at ISO 100, 32mm, 4 seconds at F22 with a circular polarizer to saturate the colors.

Pewit’s Next Tips

  • This park photographs best on a cloudy day.
  • Perfect conditions would be bright overcast, with little wind, with wet rocks just after a rain.
  • Light drizzle works very well is there is little wind.
  • The rain saturates the leaves as well as the colors on the rocks.
  • Use a polarizer to remove glare.

Polarizer Tips

People misuse polarizers. I generally do not use them on sunny days, especially if I have a lot of sky in the image. Why? The polarizer will darken the sky in a very non-uniform manner that is hard to correct even in Photoshop.

I often use polarizers on cloudy days and did so on these images. Here are two more images from this spot in the upper area.

I went back the next day, but a heavy overnight rain increased the flow and washed almost all the leaves away.

Also see Pewits Nest, Wisconsin State Natural Area, Lower Falls.

Equipment List

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

Nearby Locations

Devil’s Lake State Park, Parfrey’s Glen, Ableman’s Gorge, and the International Crane Foundation are close by.

Ableman’s Gorge

  1. Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 1
  2. Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 2

I have an entire series on the International Crane Foundation. That link will take you to some of them. Look for those tagged “Mish Moments”.

Click on the link for a search, or better yet, scroll through my Mish Moments Home Page until you find them.

I will cover Devil’s Lake State Park and Parfrey’s Glen in subsequent articles.

Please Subscribe: Click to Subscribe by Email.

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

You can also follow me on Twitter! I have both an economic forum and a photography forum.

  1. Photography: MishMoments
  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow MishMoments.

Please follow. I do not give away or share email addresses!

Thanks!

Coming up: A second post on Pewit’s Nest them Parfrey’s Glen.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Pewits Nest, Wisconsin State Natural Area, Lower Falls

Those looking for a nice weekend or day trip from Chicago, Northern Illinois, or Wisconsin should check out the natural features near Baraboo, Wisconsin.
This post is on Pewit’s Nest State Natural Area.

The dominant feature at Pewits Nest is a 30- to 40-foot deep gorge formed during the retreat of the last glacier. Associated with it are Skillet Creek, shaded cliffs, and a northern dry-mesic pine forest. When Glacial Lake Baraboo drained, Skillet Creek cut a narrow canyon through the Cambrian sandstone, forming a series of potholes and low waterfalls. The layers of Cambrian sandstone show that a finer-grained sediment was laid down by the Cambrian seas “inside” the syncline, a process different from that at Parfrey’s Glen where coarser Cambrian conglomerates and sandstones are found in layers. Skillet Creek has a gradient of 38 feet/mile and an average flow of 0.8 cfs. Within and above the gorge grows a narrow fringe of forest dominated by red cedar, white pine, hemlock, and yellow birch.

The hike to the gorge is about 0.9 miles. I would rate it as very easy. There is elevation change to get to the top, but anyone in reasonably good health who can walk will not struggle with this one. The main danger is getting too close to the cliff edge and falling off.

Pewit’s Nest Directions

The DNR link above provides directions and a map of newly closed areas. I cannot tell precisely from the map if I was in a closed area or not when I took the vertical images from above. I do not believe I was in a closed area for the third, horizontal image that shows a tiny portion of the lower falls.

Judging from the map, all the trails appear to be open but there is no longer any access to the gorge itself.

I had never been in the gorge but wanted to do so in the winter if things froze solid enough. That option appears to be gone, at least legally.

Feature Image Details

For the feature image, I used a Canon 24-105MM F4 L Lens at ISO 125, 45mm, 3.2 seconds at F22.

I do not recommend an F22 or anything greater than f16 because you run into diffraction limits which makes for decreased sharpness. I was trying to get a longer exposure to blur the water. F16 would have resulted in an exposure half of F22 (each F-Stop doubles or halves the time).  1.6 seconds likely would have been long enough to get the effect in the water that I wanted. All that said, the image is very sharp, so F22 does not seem to have hut the image any.

Pewit’s Next Tips

  • This park photographs best on a cloudy day.
  • Perfect conditions would be bright overcast, with little wind, with wet rocks just after a rain.
  • Light drizzle works very well is there is little wind.
  • The rain saturates the leaves as well as the colors on the rocks.
  • Use a polarizer to remove glare.

Polarizer Tips

People misuse polarizers. I generally do not use them on sunny days, especially if I have a lot of sky in the image. Why? The polarizer will darken the sky in a very non-uniform manner that is hard to correct even in Photoshop.

I often use polarizers on cloudy days and did so on these images. Here is a second image from the bluff area with a narrower angle view.

The gorge contains at least three waterfalls.

To get those images, I was in a place where if I fell I would have died. I do not want to exaggerate the risk as there was not that much danger as long as one is paying attention. It is easy to take a step back or slip if one is not careful.

Similar shots are available from the main trail, but they will have trees blocking a portion of the scene.

Portion of Lower Falls 

That’s all you can see of the lower falls from ground level, at least legally. Swimming and wading are prohibited.

I edited out a small portion of one rock where some idiots attempted to scratch their names. The rock is very hard and you have to get wet, so, fortunately, the area is not very defaced.

Equipment List

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

Nearby Locations

Devil’s Lake State Park, Parfrey’s Glen, Ableman’s Gorge, and the International Crane Foundation are close by.

Ableman’s Gorge

  1. Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 1
  2. Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 2

I have an entire series on the International Crane Foundation. That link will take you to some of them. Look for those tagged “Mish Moments”.

Click on the link for a search, or better yet, scroll through my Mish Moments Home Page until you find them.

I will cover Devil’s Lake State Park and Parfrey’s Glen in subsequent articles.

Please Subscribe: Click to Subscribe by Email.

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

You can also follow me on Twitter! I have both an economic forum and a photography forum.

  1. Photography: MishMoments
  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow MishMoments.

Please follow. I do not give away or share email addresses!

Thanks!

Coming up: A second post on Pewit’s Nest them Parfrey’s Glen.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 2

Those looking for a nice weekend or day trip from Chicago, Northern Illinois, or Wisconsin should check out the natural features near Baraboo, Wisconsin.
This post is my second on Ableman’s Gorge.

Ableman’s Gorge is a classic gorge cut by the Baraboo River through Baraboo quartzite, Cambrian sandstone, and conglomerate. The cliffs and rocky slopes rise about 200 feet above the river to form a wall nearly three-fourths of a mile long, oriented east-west, which then abruptly turns south for a similar distance. The latter portion is 250-450 feet wide and is composed of irregular quartzite cliffs. Spectacular unconformable contacts with younger Cambrian sandstone can be seen on both the north and south sides of the Precambrian Baraboo quartzite. The exposures of the unconformity between the ancient quartzite and the overlying sandstone are world famous. The site tells a fascinating geological story of changing conditions in an ancient sea that first rose quietly against a cliff of quartzite and then, as layers of sediments gradually decreased the relief between sea floor and land, surged against the top of the cliff, wearing away quartzite and depositing a layer of cobbles and boulders across its upturned edge. Erosional forces and a former quarrying operation in the southern part of the natural area have re-exposed these long buried layers. Nowhere in the Midwest is such a sequence of events so displayed. The cool, moist, north-facing slopes shelter plants more typical of northern Wisconsin, including hemlock, yellow birch, mountain maple and Canada yew. The groundlayer contains numerous ferns and includes species such as Virginia water-leaf and Canada mayflower. The area is widely used for geology research and a plaque honors researcher Charles Van Hise, who formulated some of his principles of structural deformation and metamorphism here. Ableman’s Gorge is owned by the DNR and the University of Wisconsin and was designated a State Natural Area in 1969.

Ableman’s Gorge Directions

The DNR provides directions but fails to mention there are two sections to the park. Be sure to visit both. There is parking near Van Hise Rock on one side of state highway 136 and just down the road, there is a second parking area on the other side of 136.

Feature Image Details

For the feature image, I used a Canon 16-35MM F4 L Lens at ISO 125, 17mm, 0.8 seconds at F20.

Using F-stops above 16 are not advisable. But that is what I did. It is better to use focus bracketing and stack images. It would have been easy to do in this image, but this shot was taken a number of years ago befire I learned that technique.

The foreground leaves and rock were not moving so the procedure would have been a piece of cake.

Ableman’s Gorge Tips

  • This park photographs best on a cloudy day.
  • Perfect conditions would be bright overcast, with little wind, with wet rocks just after a rain.
  • Light drizzle works very well is there is little wind.
  • The rain saturates the leaves as well as the purple and pink quartzite.
  • Use a polarizer to remove glare.

Polarizer Tips

People misuse polarizers. I generally do not use them on sunny days, especially if I have a lot of sky in the image. Why? The polarizer will darken the sky in a very non-uniform manner that is hard to correct even in Photoshop.

I often use polarizers on cloudy days and did so with many of these images.

That’s my car in the preceding image. I had my wife, Liz, drive real slow towards me. My Tripod was on the highway.

There are not a lot of trails. So don’t expect long hikes.

Equipment List

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

Nearby Locations

Devil’s Lake State Park, Parfrey’s Glen, Pewits Nest, and the International Crane Foundation are close by.

I have an entire series on the International Crane Foundation. That link will take you to some of them. Look for those tagged “Mish Moments”.

Click on the link for a search, or better yet, scroll through my Mish Moments Home Page until you find them.

I will cover Devil’s Lake State Park, Parfrey’s Glen, and Pewits Nest in subsequent articles.

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  2. Economics: MishGEA

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Coming up: More images from Ableman’s Gorge, then a new location near Baraboo, Wisconsin.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Ableman’s Gorge State Natural Area, Wisconsin – Part 1

Those looking for a nice weekend or day trip from Chicago, Northern Illinois, or Wisconsin should check out the natural features near Baraboo, Wisconsin.
This post covers Ableman’s Gorge.

Ableman’s Gorge is a classic gorge cut by the Baraboo River through Baraboo quartzite, Cambrian sandstone, and conglomerate. The cliffs and rocky slopes rise about 200 feet above the river to form a wall nearly three-fourths of a mile long, oriented east-west, which then abruptly turns south for a similar distance. The latter portion is 250-450 feet wide and is composed of irregular quartzite cliffs. Spectacular unconformable contacts with younger Cambrian sandstone can be seen on both the north and south sides of the Precambrian Baraboo quartzite. The exposures of the unconformity between the ancient quartzite and the overlying sandstone are world famous. The site tells a fascinating geological story of changing conditions in an ancient sea that first rose quietly against a cliff of quartzite and then, as layers of sediments gradually decreased the relief between sea floor and land, surged against the top of the cliff, wearing away quartzite and depositing a layer of cobbles and boulders across its upturned edge. Erosional forces and a former quarrying operation in the southern part of the natural area have re-exposed these long buried layers. Nowhere in the Midwest is such a sequence of events so displayed. The cool, moist, north-facing slopes shelter plants more typical of northern Wisconsin, including hemlock, yellow birch, mountain maple and Canada yew. The groundlayer contains numerous ferns and includes species such as Virginia water-leaf and Canada mayflower. The area is widely used for geology research and a plaque honors researcher Charles Van Hise, who formulated some of his principles of structural deformation and metamorphism here. Ableman’s Gorge is owned by the DNR and the University of Wisconsin and was designated a State Natural Area in 1969.

Ableman’s Gorge Directions

The DNR provides directions but fails to mention there are two sections to the park. Be sure to visit both. There is parking near Van Hise Rock on one side of state highway 136 and just down the road, there is a second parking area on the other side of 136.

Feature Image Details

For the feature image, I used a Canon 24-105MM F4 L Lens at ISO 200, 45mm, 1/6 of a second at F16.

Ableman’s Gorge Tips

  • This park photographs best on a cloudy day.
  • Perfect conditions would be bright overcast, with little wind, with wet rocks just after a rain.
  • Light drizzle works very well is there is little wind.
  • The rain saturates the leaves as well as the purple and pink quartzite.
  • Use a polarizer to remove glare.

Polarizer Tips

People misuse polarizers. I generally do not use them on sunny days, especially if I have a lot of sky in the image. Why? The polarizer will darken the sky in a very non-uniform manner that is hard to correct even in Photoshop.

I often use polarizers on cloudy days.

Those images were all taken within a 100-yard area at most. There are not a lot of trails. So don’t expect long hikes.

In the Spring, there are lots of wildflowers, especially in the other section.

Equipment List

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

Nearby Locations

Devil’s Lake State Park, Parfrey’s Glen, Pewits Nest, and the International Crane Foundation are close by.

I have an entire series on the International Crane Foundation. That link will take you to some of them. Look for those tagged “Mish Moments”.

Click on the link for a search, or better yet, scroll through my Mish Moments Home Page until you find them.

I will cover Devil’s Lake State Park, Parfrey’s Glen, and Pewits Nest in subsequent articles.

Please Subscribe: Click to Subscribe by Email.

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

You can also follow me on Twitter! I have both an economic forum and a photography forum.

  1. Photography: MishMoments
  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow MishMoments.

Please follow. I do not give away or share email addresses!

Thanks!

Coming up: More images from Ableman’s Gorge, then a new location near Baraboo, Wisconsin.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Woodstock Illinois: Opera House, Courthouse in Autumn Plus “Groundhog Day” Winter Scene

The classic 1993 film “Groundhog Day” allegedly filmed in Punxsutawney and Gobbler’s Knob Pennsylvania was in reality mostly filmed 575 miles away, in Woodstock, Illinois.

The feature image is of the Woodstock Opera House that appears in many scenes.

The town square is nice and there are a lot of good restaurants.

Here’s a Walking Tour of Downtown Woodstock.

The Legend

Each year, on February 2, Groundhog Punxsutawney Phil, a long-time resident of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, comes out of his home in Gobbler’s Knob (about 2 miles east of town) to predict the weather for the rest of winter. In front of all the townfolks and thousands of his followers from all over the world, Phil looks for his shadow. If he sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter weather. If he does not see his shadow, spring will be coming early this year.

Feature Image Details

For the feature image, I used a Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5 L Tilt-Shift Lens at ISO 400, 1/15 of a second at F16.

This is a fixed focal length lens, not a zoom.

It has tilt/shift capability that I primarily use in shift mode. If you are familiar with the unsightly effect of pointing up at trees or buildings, you can correct that distortion by shifting the lens up rather than pointing the camera up.

Tips

  • This Opera House image requires patience and lots of it. I camped out for hours in one spot, shooing away any cars that tried to park in front of the building. Everyone cooperated. Most cooperated happily, one reluctantly. The cars to the right were there all day. Had they been parked in front of the building, the image would have bee ruined.
  • I took this shot mid-week. Forget about having a clear view on Friday or Saturday, or for that matter almost anytime you are not shooing cars away.
  • A sunny day works well but you need to know how to bring out shadow details.
  • In Autumn, this scene is mostly backlit but right at sunset expect extreme sidelight. There were some high thin clouds that helped even out the light.

Here are some images of the courthouse as seen from the town square.

 

Winter Scene

I took the Winter scene with the Canon TS-E 24mm f/3.5 L Tilt-Shift Lens as well. Canon also makes a 17mm f/4L Tilt-Shift Lens.

I have both lenses now but only had the 24mm version when I made those images.

If choosing between the two T/S lenses, take opt for the 17mm lens. You can always crop, but it is difficult to add what isn’t captured.

Equipment List

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

Other Illinois Destinations

  1. Horseshoe Lake, Illinois Sunrise, Bald cypress and Tupelo trees
  2. Apple River Canyon State Park, Illinois
  3. Garden of the Gods: Shawnee National Forest, Illinois

I have an entire series on Starved Rock State Park.

Click on the link for a search, or better yet, scroll through my Mish Moments Home Page until you find them.

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

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  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow MishMoments.

Please follow. I do not give away or share email addresses!

Thanks!

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Garden of the Gods: Shawnee National Forest, Illinois

Our Illinois tour continues with a look a the Garden of the Gods in the Shawnee National Forest in extreme Southern Illinois.

More than 320 million years ago, the wind and rain patiently started to chisel away at large deposits of sedimentary rock located in what is now, Shawnee National Forest. Over the years, the elements have sculpted stunning, extraordinary rock formations.

There are 5.5 miles of hiking trails at this spot with many more trails nearby. I would rate the trails to the images shown in this article as easy for almost everyone but those in a wheelchair. The feature shot and the images below are a half-mile or less from the parking lot.

Feature Image Details

For the image, I used a Canon 16-35MM F4 L Lens at 28mm, for 1/13 of a second at ISO 250, f16.

Tips

  • This is an easy shot. 28mm is not extreme. Anyone can take this image with almost any camera.
  • You just have to be there at sunset on a sunny day. The location does not photograph well at other times. The hardest part is not having people in your images. This is a very popular spot, especially on weekends.
  • Best time: Very late October or early November.

Here are some more images from the same day.

I assure you these shots are as easy as they get. Nearly anyone can walk to this location and nearly any camera will do.

I recommend a tripod as always, but these shots could be taken without a tripod with proper technique.

Equipment List

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

Related Articles

  1. Horseshoe Lake, Illinois Sunrise, Bald cypress and Tupelo trees
  2. Apple River Canyon State Park, Illinois

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

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You can also follow me on Twitter! I have both an economic forum and a photography forum.

  1. Photography: MishMoments
  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow the former.

Please follow. I do not give away or share email addresses!

Thanks!

Coming up next: Another destination in Southern Illinois.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Apple River Canyon State Park, Illinois

Those looking for a scenic day trip from Chicago or Northern Illinois should check out Apple River Canyon State Park.

The park is located in the hilly northwest corner of Illinois in Jo Daviess County near the Wisconsin border. Limestone bluffs, deep ravines, springs, streams and wildlife characterize this area. In the winter, eagles frequent the area.

Five trails – Pine Ridge, Tower Rock, River Route, Sunset and Primrose Trail (accessible) – wind through the woods for several miles within the park.

You can easily explore the park in a single day.

All of these images are from late-October. They represent the peak of the Autumn season.

Feature Image Details

For the feature image, I used a Canon 24-105MM F4 L Lens at 58mm, for 1/30 of a second at ISO 500.

Tips

  • The key to reflection images such as these is for the water to be in the shade.
  • Play around with various exposures and time durations.
  • Get low to the water! Sometimes you cannot see any reflections unless you get low. Find a composition you like, then set up the tripod in that position.

Here are some more images all taken within a couple hundred yards of the feature image in late afternoon.

When possible, shoot both vertical and horizontal images. Here is a vertical image from the same location.

The previous two images were taken with a Canon 16-35MM F4 L Lens: If I had to pick one lens and one lens only, this lens would be at the top of the list. I see things from a wide angle perspective.

 

Apple Canyon Lake Waterfall

Note the Great Blue Heron fishing at the top of the waterfall.

The above image is not in the main park area. Rather, a dam on the river forms Apple Canyon Lake. For directions, do a search for Apple Canyon Lake Waterfall as opposed to Apple River Canyon State Park.

There are no trails in the area. The surrounding land is private and posted. Other than to stop and take an image, there is little to do at this spot. It’s worth a side trip from the state park, but it’s not an activity destination.

Equipment List

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

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

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You can also follow me on Twitter! I have both an economic forum and a photography forum.

  1. Photography: MishMoments
  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow the former.

Please do. Thanks!

Coming up next: Another new destination.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Porcupine Mountains State Park: Greenstone Falls, Overlooked Falls, Little Carp River

One of my favorite Midwest spots is Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park in the Michigan upper peninsula.

The park offers 90 miles of trails, beautiful lakes, and numerous waterfalls. It also offers an immense amount of biting insects (black flies, mosquitoes, gnats, and other major nuisances).

The best way to avoid these annoying pests (they are worst in June and July), is to go offseason. Fall and Winter are my favorite times. In the Winter the park offers both downhill and cross-country ski trails.

The park has three main sections: Lake of the Clouds (plus the shoreline), the interior, and the river (waterfall) section. This post covers an interior trail that follows the Little Carp River.

All of these images are from mid-October. They represent the peak of the Autumn season.

People flock to the river section and Lake of the Clouds. There is much more to see if you get off the beaten path. The trail to Mirror Lake is well traveled, but we had this trail to ourselves.

Feature Image Details

The feature image is a set of two images taken from the same location.

The first was for 30 seconds. I took a second exposure for the land that was about a half-second. Wind is the problem to overcome. It was pretty calm, but 30 seconds is simply asking too much. The trees will blur.

I used a Canon 16-35MM F4 L Lens at a focal length of 28 MM. To include more of the trees on the land, I tilted the camera up for the second shot. The result looks more like a 5-4 crop than the normal 3-2 ration of a typical 35mm camera.

To increase the exposure length, I used a B+W polarizer plus a Neutral Density Filter.  My B+W ND filters are of strength 3.0 (10 stops), 1.8 (6 stops), and 0.6 (2 stops).

The Canon 16-35 mm lens can stack two filters without vignetting, but the 24-105 mm lens can’t.

Vision

The image is more about vision than anything else. I had to get wet to get the image, by crossing the river. It’s not that deep but it is cold in mid-October.

First, one had to see the potential. This is what it looked like on the near side.

The above is a nice image but I thought I could do better. I spotted those bubbles on the opposite side and wondered, “What if?” The only way to find out is to get wet.

This is what the shot looks like from the opposite bank at 1/2 second.

That shot would go in the ash can, I use it only to show what the naked eye roughly sees.

The light in that image is not as good as the feature image, but I could detect the leaves were spinning very slowly in a circular pattern. The 30-second exposure explains most of the rest.

As for the color difference, the sunlight was hitting the tops of the trees in the feature image and they reflected on the water. Here is a 30-second exposure without the sun.

Tips

  • The key to reflection images such as these is for the water to be in the shade. The reflected trees are in the sun. The exposures were long enough to purposely blur the water.
  • You will need a tripod for shots like these. Play around with various exposures and time durations. The faster the moving water, the less time you need to get smooth water.
  • Get low to the water!
  • Sometimes you cannot see any reflections unless you get low. Find a composition you like, then setup the tripod in that position.
  • Understand that it most often takes 30 seconds or more to get a shot like this. Most cameras only go up to 30 seconds. If you need more time, then you need a cable release set on bulb, counting or using a stopwatch to count the seconds.
  • The hardest part of this image is recognizing the possibility and being willing to get wet to try out the idea.

Along the way to Greenstone Falls, you pass Overlooked Falls. Here are a couple of images.

Overlooked Falls 

Equipment List

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

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

Porcupine Mountains Images

  1. Porcupine Mountains State Park: Lake of the Clouds
  2. Porcupine Mountains State Park: Presque Isle River, Manabezho Falls
  3. Porcupine Mountains State Park: Presque Isle River, Manido Falls
  4. Porcupine Mountains State Park: Presque Isle River, Nawadaha Falls
  5. Porcupine Mountains State Park: Presque Isle River Reflections

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You can also follow me on Twitter! I have both an economic forum and a photography forum.

  1. Photography: MishMoments
  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow the former.

Please do. Thanks!

Coming up next: A new destination.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock

Porcupine Mountains State Park: Presque Isle River Reflections

One of my favorite Midwest spots is Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park in the Michigan upper peninsula.

The park offers 90 miles of trails, beautiful lakes, and numerous waterfalls. It also offers an immense amount of biting insects (black flies, mosquitoes, gnats, and other major nuisances).

The best way to avoid these annoying pests (they are worst in June and July), is to go offseason. Fall and Winter are my favorite times. In the Winter the park offers both downhill and cross-country ski trails.

The park has three main sections: Lake of the Clouds (plus the shoreline), the interior, and the river (waterfall) section. This post is on the river section.

All of these images are from mid-October. They represent the peak of the Autumn season.

Autumn Reflections

The feature image was taken at ISO 100 for 0.4 seconds at F11. I used a Canon 24-105MM F4 L Lens at a focal length of 82 MM.

Here are a couple more images. Slight changes in composition or tripod placement can produce hugely different reflections.

Tips

The key to reflection images such as these is for the water to be in the shade. The reflected trees are in the sun. The exposures were long enough to purposely blur the water.

You will need a tripod for shots like these. Play around with various exposures and time durations. The faster the moving water, the less time you need to get smooth water.

Get low to the water!

Sometimes you cannot see any reflections unless you do. Find a composition you like, then setup the tripod in that position.

There is a 2-mile waterfall loop trail that circles the waterfall section. Take it.

Equipment List

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

If you like this article, please share by email or use one of the share buttons beneath the article.

Porcupine Mountains Images

  1. Porcupine Mountains State Park: Lake of the Clouds
  2. Porcupine Mountains State Park: Presque Isle River, Manabezho Falls
  3. Porcupine Mountains State Park: Presque Isle River, Manido Falls
  4. Porcupine Mountains State Park: Presque Isle River, Nawadaha Falls

Please Subscribe: Click to Subscribe by Email.

You can also follow me on Twitter! I have both an economic forum and a photography forum.

  1. Photography: MishMoments
  2. Economics: MishGEA

MishMoments is a subset of MishGEA. Those interested in photography only should follow the former.

Please do. Thanks!

Coming up next: a long-exposure surprise then on to a new location.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock