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Field Notes

Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is seriously one of my all-time favorite locations for photography.

I was on my fall trip and decided to spend some time at the Hurricane River area. I had been to this location before and had always struggled to find a composition I liked. So, I spent quite a bit of time in a mental tug-of-war trying to decide if I even wanted to give this another go. In the end I decided to take an evening and see what I could make of it.

Upon arriving, I went down to the river to check out the scene. The first thing that caught my attention were the two trees you see in the photo – the bright reds and yellows were like photographic candy to me. I knew I wanted to do something with the creek / beach / lake / trees combo, and wasn’t entirely sure how that was all going to come together.

I strolled down the river towards the lake a bit and dug the compass out of my jacket pocket. I determined exactly where the sun was going to set and played with lots of different compositions. Most of which involved those trees in one way or another.

As I went upstream, I noticed the arch made by the branches of the large yellow tree – and excitedly whispered, “No way!”

I pulled out my compass again and sure enough, I could position my camera to catch the last rays of light just as the sun kissed the horizon! A bear could have burst out of the woods doing the Waltz and I wouldn’t have been more thrilled!

I carefully positioned my camera and waited for the sun to set. I captured my image and, as I often do, I put my camera away and enjoyed the fading light of the day…

…with a big stupid grin on my face :)