[/caption] This is a view of Mt. Jefferson and its summit as viewed from Jefferson Park. With the elevation of the Park being so high, the forest that spans the area offers some great views with the mountain in the background. You can’t ask form anything better than photographing a 10,000 foot volcano with a hanging alpine glacier and nothing but blue sky in the background and an amazing forest of trees in the foreground.
[/caption] Squaw mountain is a little known hiking spot that offers some of the best views in the Oregon Cascades. Only a few remnants of the fire lookout tower remain but at least the view is still there. You can see Mt. Rainier, Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Adams, Mt. Hood and Mt. Jefferson from its summit. And best of all, you have an amazing view of the rolling foothills that make up the Cascade mountain range. If you look closely in this photo, you can see the tip of the North Sister and Mt. Washington in the distance. This photo also doesn’t show any of the logging scars left by the timber industry. However, there are plenty of scars surrounding the mountains and it’s almost impossible to avoid having them in your photos. This photo was taken on 6/12/10 at about 5:20pm and as you can see the weather was absolutely amazing. There was a few feet of snow still covering parts of the trail but the summit was mostly void of snow due to the sun exposure. I was using my Canon T1i and my Canon 18-55mm kit lens. I had the focal length at 24mm and attached my CIR-PL and warming filter. I made sure to use my tripod, bubble level and remote switch in order to avoid any camera shake. I had the camera in program/normal mode so the aperture was set at F-7 and the shutter speed at 1/100 second. I had the ISO at 100 and the white balance at 0. You are almost guaranteed to see several hawks and even a bald eagle and keep a sharp eye out for owls since you will be hiking through an old growth forest. You may even want to bring a book since the view and solitude is so amazing that you really won’t want to leave.
[/caption] Mt. Washington isn’t the tallest mountain in the Cascades but at 7,794 feet it’s one of the most photogenic. Big lake offers some of the best swimming during the summer months and during winter it completely freezes so you can cross country ski or snow show over the entire lake. There are several hiking trails that traverse the Mt. Washington Wilderness area as well as endless snow-shoeing trails available during winter.
[/caption] One of the best views from Smith Rock State Park is from the top of the Park which is about 3,250 feet. You have a 360 degree view and can see as far north as Mt. Hood and as far south as Paulina Peak. You also can see the Crooked River as it winds its way around the park which offers great spots to cool off from the desert heat. The summit of the park also offers several hiking trails that allow you to move about the entire top part of the park including the ability to look down at the rock climbers working their way towards the summit. You can also practically touch Monkey Face but I wouldn’t advise it since the fall would surely hurt. The great thing about this photo is that I was able to frame the photo with the rocks all around and then focus on the Three Sisters in the background. It also shows just how magnificent and diverse the Central Oregon topography is. To get this shot I wedged myself under a small area inside the rocks and made sure to include the climbing hooks in the bottom right in order to show the unbelievable climbing available at the park. I was using my Sigma 17-70mm lens and made sure that I had attached my CIR-PL and my warming filter in order to saturate the sky and the red rocks without having any overexposure. Since I was hiking with my 1 year old and extremely hyper Australian Cattle dog I decided that I wouldn’t bring my tripod. Unfortunately, this meant that most of my photos were taken while only using my right hand and spending most of my time keeping an eye on my dog. However, sine the sun was extremely bright I didn’t have to worry about too much shade to cause underexposure along with camera shake. This shot was taken at about 3:00pm and the sun was bright, hot and creating a strong glare. I just made sure to point my camera in the opposite direction as we hiked around the park in order to avoid too much glare. I set the ISO to 100 and the white balance at -0.3 and had the camera mode in Program/Normal mode so the aperture was set at F-6.4 and the shutter speed at 1/197 second. Since I wanted to create the most panoramic scene I set the focal length at 17mm.
[/caption] A short 3 mile hike around Lost Lake is a great way to take in the views of Mt. Hood. One of the most peaceful parks that I have ever visited in the Mt. Hood Wilderness. It can get pretty crowded on summer weekends but at least they don’t allow any motorized boats on the lake. I took this shot during the month of October while the vegetation along the lake were turning bright colors. The glare from the lake created an amazing photographic opportunity. I took this photo at about 4:00pm so the sun was almost directly behind me. There were more clouds during the morning and afternoon so I was lucky enough to be at this side of the lake in the later part of the afternoon. I had just finished hiking around the lake when I decided to eat the last of my snacks and wait for the clouds to move out. There was almost no wind and the clouds created a perfect setting along with the shadows and spots of sunlight. I was using my Canon T1i along with my Canon 18-55mm kit lens. I set the focal length at 40mm in order to get as much of the mountain in the shot but also making sure that the glare of the mountain appeared in the lake. The camera made was in Program/Normal mode so the aperture was at F-5 and the shutter speed was at 1/15 second. I kept the ISO at 100 and reduced the white balance to -2. I was also using my warming and CIR-PL filters in order to bring out the blue sky, contrast of the clouds and the colors of the trees.