Duck Dive at Sunset: Quail Creek State Park, Utah

Quail Creek State Park is very close to where we live. It’s a small but popular park for fishing, boating, kayaking, and hiking.

Quail Creek reservoir was completed in 1985 to provide irrigation and culinary water to the St. George area. Most of the water in the reservoir does not come from Quail Creek but is diverted from the Virgin River and transported through a buried pipeline.

Two dams form the reservoir. The main dam is an earth-fill embankment dam. The south dam is a roller compacted concrete dam, constructed to replace the original earth-fill dam that failed in the early hours of New Year’s Day 1989.

The maximum depth of Quail Creek can reach 120 feet, so it is cold enough to sustain the stocked rainbow trout, bullhead catfish, and crappie. Largemouth bass, which is also stocked, and bluegill thrive in the warmer, upper layers of the reservoir.

Standing In the Creek 

Image Details
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Mish’s Garden: Yellow Tiger Lilies and Bee Balm Reflections – Working With Helicon Focus

Tiger Lilies put on a long show in July and early August in my garden every year. They are not deer resistant. If I did not spray these flowers, I would not have any.

I made these images following an afternoon rain. For this type of image to work, you need deal calm and I do mean dead calm, not just for a second but for minutes.

Feature Image Details

For this set of images I used a my Canon 100MM Macro F 2.8 Lens at perhaps 1/4 life size. Meta data does not capture that information so I cannot say precisely.

This is a fixed focal length macro lens. It’s an excellent lens for butterflies and small insects.

That’s a blend of 10 different images, each focused on a different rain drop or portion of the stem. Even with the varying focus spots the background is out of focus. That adds to the image, I wanted the key elements to be in focus and the rest not.

Focus Stacking

All of these images are focus-stacked.

I used Helicon Focus to blend them.

For comparison purposes, here is one of the frames, un-stacked.

Single Image – Not Focus Stacked 

The detail on the leaf at the right is missing and only one of the drops is in focus. Helicon focus did superb on this set, better and faster than I could do myself. For that I can thank the calm wind.

Here is a another focus-stacked image.

Depth of Field

Depth of field on close-up images is extremely shallow. The only way to get a completely sharp image is to focus stack.

Helicon Focus works best with stationary objects. Mountains don’t move but flowers do.

I took this set of images on a very calm day with little wind.

See links number 2 and 6 below for a focus-stacked Green Tree Frog and focus-stacked coneflowers.

Garden to Attract Bees and Insects 

If you are looking for tips to attract bees and other insects you may wish to consider Flowers for Bees

More Mish Garden Images

  1. Mish’s Garden Springtime: Bleeding Hearts, Tulips, Daffodils
  2. Mish’s Garden: Green Tree Frog on Bromeliad
  3. Mish’s Garden: Alliums and Iris Early Summer
  4. Mish’s Garden: Roses and Clematis Blooms
  5. Mish’s Garden: Columbines
  6. Mish’s Garden: Purple Prairie Coneflowers – Working With Helicon Focus

Equipment List

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

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Mike “Mish” Shedlock