Dry Falls, Washington
I had the opportunity to photograph for the day at Dry Falls State Park in central Washington. This was about a week ago, and being summer it was a bit warm -- somewhere a little over 100F. I photographed until 1pm, then took a long break and returned at 6pm and photographed until the full moon rose. Carrying 60 pounds of 8x10 gear in that heat really zapped me.
The lava plains of central WA is interesting enough, but add a series of floods of incredible size, and one has an interesting landscape to say the least. The series of floods were caused when glaciers during the last ice age blocked a river, creating Glacier Lake Missoula -- about the size of present day Lake Ontario. Eventually the lake would burst through the ice dam and drain in about 48 hours -- causing a flow greater than ALL present day rivers in the world combined. And this happened many times.
These flood created Dry Falls -- now 400' tall and 3.5 miles wide ( in comparison, Niagra Falls are 165' tall and a mile wide). It is said that when the flood water was at its height, these falls were not even visible -- just a riffle in the flood -- Portland was under 400' of water due to these floods.
I developed most of the 8x10's last night, and perhaps in the next few days I will scan them and share a few images. Anyone else have images from this place? I definitely plan on returning -- hopefully in a little cooler weather and with more time!
It is worth checking out on Google Maps/Earth!
Vaughn, I haven't been there but I saw a post you made before you went there and looked it up, I was totally astonished that I hadn't heard of the place before. The history, geology and Earth Science blew me away. When you decide to return in the future let me know, I'd love to go over there, maybe by then I'll have an 11X14 camera to drag around.
I'd like to drag my 5x12 with me out there. Looks breathtaking.
I'll let you know, Curt! But it will not be for a long while -- it is a 16 hours or so drive for me! Depending on the weather, I might try to get there in December or perhaps next Spring.
But it is one of those places that just standing there is a moving experience...the heat, sounds of insects and blowing grasses, the surrounding lava cliffs in the distance, acres of sky above, no one around. If the map shows up below, I parked at the end of the dirt road next to Dry Falls Lake, then hiked over Umatilla Rock (the long formation running SW to NE) at the saddle, then over to Green Lake -- returning to Dry Fall lake around Umatilla Rock's NE end.
The map did not show up, but one can click on the link. Lots still to check out -- heard of some potholes, like one sees carved into the riverbed by rocks rolling around in a hole, but on a much bigger scale.
That sounds good for me, I've got a workshop with Per in 55 days and I'm working on the house and in the shop on an 11X14 camera, I did a first run at the film holders today. I have two side rails and a center septum with slots for the film to slide in. It works and the film fits just right. That's hurdle number one, the rest is on paper and ready to go. Could it be that it's not rocket science after all but precision woodworking? I've got to order some items and select a wood. Spring would be a good time to go. From what I've read it's really something to see.
My father used to drag us kids over there, told us the whole story; even for a kid it was impressive. But nowadays the only times I cross the mountains is to plant my butt in a beergarden in Leavenworth and get soaked. The sausages at King Ludvig's are fabulous. But I see I'm going to have to make a pilgrimage out to Dry Falls later this year, when it's somewhere between 100 degrees and a skating rink.
Fred, my three boys only seemed to be semi-impressed. But then we only stopped at the visitor center, and being 13 years old they are hard to impress. When I went back to photograph, my sister took the boys to Lake Coeur D' Alene for the day. I'll have to take them to Dry Falls when I go next and camp there -- they can swim in the lake, check out the girls, etc while I photograph. One of my boys is interested in photography -- perhaps he could use my 4x5 or 5x7 while I wander around with the 8x10. He used his savings to buy a P&S digital, but I'll see if I can lead him to the dark slide.
I like your screen name...I tell my boys to obey their farter -- at which they roll their eyes and sometimes crack a smile...
Two images (scanned 8x10 negs) from Dry Falls.
Umatilla Rock, 2010
Taken in the morning, but already above 100F
f22 at 1/8 sec (FP4+)
Grasses and Rocks, 2010
Taken after the sun set and as the Full moon was rising behind me.
F32 at 2 minutes (FP4+)
Both with Fuji W 300mm/5.6 and a yellow filter
Both developed with Ilford Universal PQ Developer 1:9 70F at 10 minutes in Expert Drum
Just a quick scan with not a lot of fiddling in PhotoShop
It's funny, but the Grasses and Rocks shot is completely unfamiliar to me. But then it's been 40 years...
Perhaps it is the time of year and day (dusk with the rising moon behind). The place is either lakes, rocks or grasses such as these (well, there are a few spring/wet areas and a few trees were there is water, too). The rocks in the far back are at the base of Umatilla Rock -- a tall narrow landform that sort of points to the dry falls. The image of Umatilla Rock was taken in a saddle in the rock -- you can see it extending to the southwest on the left and there is another fifth of the rock behind the camera. The rock and grasses image was taken a little father down the rock than shown on the far left of the Umatilla Rock image.
Originally Posted by flatulent1
The big question now is platinum or carbon for these negs. The Umatilla Rock image has enough contrast for carbon (and maybe too much for platinum), but the grasses and rock neg will need selenium toning for carbon printing to boost the contrast a bit. I would have loved to had been able to used f64 and extended the exposure time out -- that would have increased the contrast due to the reciprocity failure rate of the FP4+. But I was taking advantage of a short period of time of very little wind (there is a little movement in some of the grasses) between day and night. Also the area closes at dusk, I still had to hike back to my van, and I did not know how tight the park rangers were on the time they closed the gates.
Instead of f32 at 2 minutes, I would have used f64 at perhaps 30 minutes (to adjust a little for reciprocity failure and the slow reduction of available light.) As it was, the rocks were exposed correctly but even cooking the neg in the developer I could not get more density in the grasses.
I have one more identical neg of Umatilla Rock to develop -- I'll give it a little less development in case I want to give it a go in platinum.