Stair Step Falls

I have no idea what the falls along Big Tumbling are named or if they ever have been named but this one sounded appropriate! All of them can be really beautiful but you have to be willing to get muddy and wet to shoot them. The river has cut a deep ravine into the mountain over the millennia and it is a long, steep climb from the narrow gravel road down to the water.

The river is a favorite among local fisherman so there are many worn paths down the banks but the footing is still pretty unpredictable. I scouted around the side of the road for several minutes trying to find the best route to reach these cascades. I finally came down a few hundred feet upstream and worked my way to them crawling over and under fallen trees.

The lighting in this particular spot turned out to be somewhat problematic. The foreground and far background were already catching the sun as it topped the mountainside to the right but the center frame was being shadowed by trees on the bank. A graduated filter plus a little luck (read as ‘passing cloud’!) prevailed and I got the right balance in just a few shots.

Gear: Canon EOS 60D, Tamron AF 10-24mm

Software: Adobe Lightroom 3, Adobe Photoshop CS5, Topaz Adjust 5

This entry was posted in Photography and tagged , , , .


  1. Adam Allegro April 30, 2012 at 9:42 AM #

    I have seen some of your other waterfall shots and absolutely loved them. Wonderful job here as well Curt!!! Absolutely stunning.
    Adam Allegro recently posted…Heaven’s Hallway – Before and After

  2. LensScaper April 29, 2012 at 5:28 PM #

    Those curtains of water are captured really well. The fallen tree on the Rt edge really hold the image in on that side. Nice POV, Curt
    LensScaper recently posted…Freaky Friday

  3. Mark Summerfield April 24, 2012 at 1:42 PM #

    Nice composition, Curt. Just the right amount of movement in the water and just love the framing crated by the fallen tree in the foreground.
    Mark Summerfield recently posted…The Carmel of Port Tobacco, Maryland

  4. Corporate Headshots April 24, 2012 at 1:13 PM #

    Great composition and like the log in the foreground and the waterfall movement behind
    Corporate Headshots recently posted…Annual Report Headshots

  5. Edith levy April 24, 2012 at 11:16 AM #

    Outstanding shot Curt. Perfect exposure. I love how you’ve blurred the water just enough to still get this smooth, fluid motion feel to it…if that makes sense :) Anyway…love it.
    Edith levy recently posted…Shoot & Share – Getting Your Photographs Out Into The World – A New Craft & Vision eBook

  6. Mark Neal April 24, 2012 at 11:02 AM #

    Great composition and overall gorgeous shot, Curt. Nice one.
    Mark Neal recently posted…HDR – Azaleas Galore

  7. Adam Olson April 24, 2012 at 10:59 AM #

    Really cool shot Chris! I love the use of the foreground element. What a beautiful area.
    Adam Olson recently posted…Hello from Denver

  8. Eden April 24, 2012 at 10:31 AM #

    Nice work, Curt.
    Eden recently posted…Reprocessing An Old Favorite: “Full Glory”

  9. Jimi Jones April 24, 2012 at 10:18 AM #

    Lovely scene, man. I love this composition and I agree with Rick, you’ve come up with a great name for this falls. Nice job, Curt!
    Jimi Jones recently posted…Seabees ~ Can Do

  10. Rick Louie April 24, 2012 at 8:49 AM #

    I agree with Chris. I really dig that moss. Nice!
    Rick Louie recently posted…Little House on the Prairie

  11. Chris Nitz April 24, 2012 at 7:33 AM #

    The tree with moss adds a nice touch of interest to the frame.
    Chris Nitz recently posted…My Kahlua

  12. Dave DiCello April 24, 2012 at 7:25 AM #

    I love the hint of light in the foreground Curt, this is beautiful!
    Dave DiCello recently posted…Self reflection

  13. andy gimino April 24, 2012 at 7:23 AM #

    Sometimes it pays off to wait for that passing cloud Kurt! I have used that same “technique” on many occasions to get the shot I am looking for. Great post today! Sometimes the sun hitting a waterfall can lead to some creative thinking and compostions!
    andy gimino recently posted…Stasis

  14. Len Saltiel April 24, 2012 at 7:06 AM #

    Nicely composed and exposed Curt. That sounds like a great name for the falls. Maybe you can put a sign or to up and it will be forever known as that.
    Len Saltiel recently posted…Rugged

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