You may think that this photo was taken in July but I actually took it in November. You wouldn’t think that the Oregon coast could produce such awesome weather in November but fortunately we are blessed with some pretty amazing weather during Fall and Winter. However, the storms have rumbled back in and we are looking at about 2 to 3 weeks of rainy and unsettling weather. If you’re able to check the weather forecast on a daily basis you might be lucky enough to find that small window of opportunity and find a sunny day along the coast. This would be the best time to get an amazing sunset shot as well as have the ability to stroll along the beach like it was summer. I took this shot while visiting Ecola State Park and I was pleasantly surprised that there was absolutely no wind and no clouds. The temperatures were even descent. However, once the sun started to go down, the temperatures started to drop and the wind picked up. The photo from my previous post is what the sunset looked like. The colder months are much better at producing better sunsets, than at any other time during summer, and I would highly recommend visiting during Fall or Winter since you can also avoid the crowds and get a much better deal on a place to stay.
Ecola State Park offers one of the most amazing and seldom visited beaches in Oregon. However, it’s not because it’s a long a stretch of Oregon that’s secluded and seldom seen. In fact, the area is one of the most visited state parks in the entire state but 99% of the tourists can only look down on the beach from high atop the viewing platform that overlooks the beach and Cannon Beach. One of the only ways that you can get down to the beach is by making the 1 1/2 mile hike that is fairly steep and rugged. However, it’s a pretty easy hike but most people either don’t want to take the time or are just plain lazy. The only other way to get to the beach is by waiting for a very low tide and quickly running around the rock that separates the beach and Cannon Beach. You will most likely have to get a little wet but I’ve been able to walk around a few times without having to get wet. Unfortunately, the tide very rarely gets low enough to allow you to avoid from getting a little bit wet. There actually used to be a short hiking trail that started from where the viewing platform is but the trail, stairs and most of the earth was washed out by a massive landslide several years ago and now only remnants of the trail exist today. This is actually good news since it now keeps hundreds if not thousands of people from overpopulating one of the most scenic beaches in the area. The hiking trail takes you through an old growth forest and provides beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean. There are several resting areas along the trail and there are even additional trails that switchback around the park. There is also a waterfall that cascades onto the beach and eventually flows into the ocean.
[/caption] Hawaii like conditions along the Northern Oregon Coast with 82 degree temperatures, perfect swells and no wind! Not only was it warm for the entire part of the day but there was no wind at all and the water was as glassy and inviting as a tropical beach. September is usually the best time to visit the Oregon Coast since it’s normally experiencing an Indian Summer with sun baked days, dry weather and perfect swells. The sun also sets two hours earlier than during the summer so you don’t have to wait up all night to watch the sunset. I can honestly say that yesterday, 9/14/12, was one of the warmest days ever recorded at Cannon Beach as well as the most perfect beach day ever. Even the swells gave the impression that the Oregon Coast was welcoming a new tropical beginning with nothing but tropical weather here on out. However, reality struck when the temperatures dipped well into the upper 50’s as I stand along the beach waiting for the sun to set. I took this particular shot while standing on the viewpoint platform at Ecola State Park. It was about 6:00pm and the sun was at about a 90 degree angle with the sun in the far right. I made sure to use my tripod, bubble level and remote switch to avoid any chances of having camera blur since I attached my CIR-PL in order to eliminate too much glare from the water and sky. The viewing platform is about 200 feet above the beach so I set the FL at 23mm so I could get a good panoramic view. I also set the ISO at 100 and the white balance at -0.7 in order to avoid too much over exposure. The aperture was set at F-5.6 and the shutter speed as at 1/99 second. There are probably another 2 to 4 weeks of great opportunities along the Oregon Coast since September and October offer great sunset opportunities and the weather can be mostly dry.
[/caption] This photo joins the many photos taken at Ecola State Park along the Oregon Coast. It’s considered one of the most photographed areas in the United States. However, I am not always impressed with many if not most of the photos that I’ve reviewed on the internet or magazines. I know that this isn’t the best photo taken from here but I wanted to share just how dynamic this area really is. On this day the tide was extremely high and the swells were absolutely massive. Probably the biggest I had ever seen and I’ve been visiting the Oregon for four decades now. On this day the temperatures were pretty warm and the air was exceptionally warm. the tide and the onshore air was stirring the thin clouds up against the coast line which created this interesting scene shown in this photo. I darkened the rocks in order to create a kind of silhouette against the ocean. I was using my Canon T1i along with my Canon 18-55mm kit lens. I again attached my warming and CIR-PL filter due to the harshness of the sun and the glare created by the water and low thin clouds. I spent most of the day scouring around the park to try and capture the wrath of the swells hammering against the coastline and rocky beaches. This was truly one of my best days along the coast. I had my camera in Program/Normal mode so the aperture was at F-6.3 and the shutter at 1/80 second. I set the ISO to 100 and the white balance to -0.7 in order to combat the harsh light created by the glaring ocean and clouds. I I set the focal length at 33mm in order to eliminate parts of the beach that I didn’t want in the shot.