Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Hanging on to Autumn Colors

Right now, it is raining heavily and I know that the multicolored leaves will soon be gone. The optimist in me says that might make for either some great waterfall or rich mushroom scenes.  The realist says the dull colors of winter are on the way, soon.

So, it is time to recap the highlight of this fall season. Went to Rock City near Salamanca (New York) where the huge blocks of rock monoliths compete with the colors for attention.

I've reported all I found there in the Cayuga Nature Photograper's blog at See Rock City.  

More recently, I led a group of friends to one of the nicest collections of waterfalls in the northeastern United States.  Rickett's Glen State Park in Pennsylvania has twenty-two named waterfalls, all in about a three mile distance along Kitchen Creek.  See:  Rickett's Glen State Park 

The highest waterfall is Ganoga at 94 feet.  It is both the highest and, arguably, one of the more difficult ones to photograph, since it usually lies half in sun and half in shadow.  It's also a bit slippery to get near.

Ganoga Waterfalls in Autumn

The high waterfalls are not the only beauty to be found on Kitchen Creek.  Some of the smaller cascades are lovely.

Kitchen Creek Cascade

And, even smaller little drops can be entertaining as they wind their way down the bedrock that is littered with golden leaves.

Ribbons of Water

Among the waterfalls, I think Erie is my favorite large drop,  It's 47 feet, but what I really like is the setting and the color in the background.

Erie Falls on Kitchen Creek

It seems to me that the falls is mirrored by the hillsides colors. I've seen it in later winter and the ice makes another wonderful scene.

But, there are unnamed little drops that sometimes are really beautiful, like this one on the lower portion of Kitchen Creek.

A Gentle Drop in Kitchen Creek

Now,  there was a secret to the above photo.  I placed the camera extremely low to the ground so that the leaves in the foreground were a strong part of the image.  I actually was lying on the ground in order to see through the viewfinder.

There are, of course, many other ways to see autumn. It is also in the contrasting leaves of red and yellow that stand out against a deep blue sky.

Oak Leaves in Red and Yellow

Sometimes, the only color left among the bare branches is a hardy oak.

 But I like to make the viewer unravel the scene when a pond offers a nice reflection.

Which do you find the more interesting?  To me there is a mystery in the reflections that keeps me interested for a longer time.  Perhaps part of this is that I see so many nice scenes that I would like to have with a reflection, like this final image.

In Want of a Reflection- Red and Yellow Among the Birch Trunk

So, I expect this is the end of my autumn photography, but not an end to my memories of this autumn.  After all, I have these photos to remind me.

Enjoy the day.

Paul Schmitt

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