Posted by: kerryl29 | November 13, 2013

The UP: Day 3

The forecast for the morning of Day 3 was very similar to that of Day 2:  cloudy with a chance of rain.  A sunrise was considered an almost certain non-entity this day.  We had, however, experienced the fruits (i.e. the rainbow at Council Lake) of shrugging at the forecast and slogging out to a location in the dark on Day 2, and so we decided to do so again on Day 3.  I suggested that we give Red Jack Lake a try.

The Plan

When I’d scouted Red Jack on Day 1 of the trip, it was essentially at peak color and it still looked good on Day 2 when we took a quick glance in the rain after shooting at Council.  My concern was that, if we waited any longer to experience Red Jack, it might be past peak, so that’s where we headed in the pre-dawn darkness.

I suggested to Terry that we leave a bit earlier than we otherwise might.  Red Jack Lake is a fairly popular destination for the workshop crowd in the fall, and there’s not a lot of prime area from which to shoot, so I thought it made sense for us to get out early enough to be in place so that any workshop that might show up would have to work around us, rather than the reverse.

The trip was a familiar one, since 99% of the route was the same as that of Council Lake (our dawn destination on Day 2).  Red Jack is accessed via Council Lake Road, with a short spur–perhaps 1000 feet in length–to the north leading to the Red Jack parking area.  As we drove in, I noted the absence of any crack in the clouds along the eastern horizon.

When we arrived at the parking area it was, as I expected, deserted.  It was still dark, but we were just starting to experience the effects of ambient light.  We unloaded our gear and walked the very short distance down to the lake’s boat launch and set up, waiting for a bit more light.  We’d only been down there for a few minutes when I heard the sounds of vehicles–plural–coming down the road.  “I’ll bet it’s the Gerlachs,” I told Terry.  Sure enough, it was, and in a few moments the workshop attendees began to set up all around us at the boat launch.  Fortunately, we were there first.  Had they beaten us to the spot, I probably would have recommended that we go elsewhere as the workshop had at least 15 participants (I’ve seen as many as 20 in the past) and with space at something of a premium at Red Jack, I doubt it would have been worth trying to squeeze in.

No incredible light materialized while we were there, but at one point, a gap in the clouds appeared and we had a window of decent color in the sky, as you can see below.

Red Jack Lake Dawn, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Red Jack Lake Dawn, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

That Old Familiar Question

At some point while we were shooting, the workshop participant immediately to my left noticed the camera I was using–if this sounds familiar, it should–and started asking me about it.  “How do you like the D800E?” came the familiar query.  After telling him that I was happy with it, he told me that he had one himself, but was shooting with his D4 because he “liked the controls better.”  The D4 is, by all accounts, a great camera, and is more than capable of taking fine landscape shots, but its forte is action photography.  The question that popped into my mind was, if you’re not going to use your D800E for landscapes, what exactly are you going to use it for?  Needless to say, I didn’t respond to his question.  I just said “Uh huh.”  And then he excused himself to ask the workshop leader if he should use a polarizing filter.

This was another reminder to me–as if I needed it–that ownership of topnotch equipment doesn’t necessarily imply anything about expertise.  This guy had well over $20,000 worth of cameras and lenses with him, given the gear he ticked off (unsolicited) but he evidently had no more than an inkling of what to do with it.

In Any Event…

The brief dawn sky was as interesting as things would get when it came to wide angle shots, so I concentrated on tighter compositions during the duration of our time at Red Jack.  I took a few moments to zero  in on my favored diagonal birch trunks.  The small birch snag, to the left of the trio you see here, must have collapsed since my last visit to the lake.

Red Jack Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Red Jack Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Later, I played around with some reflections, using a mostly-submerged log as a focal point and dividing line, as you can see here, to form a semi-abstract composition.

Reflections, Red Jack Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Reflections, Red Jack Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

When we were done at Red Jack, I suggested that we go back to Council Lake since we were only about a minute away and there had been a few shots I’d been unable to obtain the previous morning when the rain got heavy.  As crowded as things had been at Red Jack, they were that quiet at Council.  There was only one other person there and, given the far greater working space, it was as though the area was totally deserted.

There was enough of a breeze at Council to eliminate any traditional “across the lake” compositions, but that didn’t mean that there weren’t shots to be had.

Autumn Alcove, Council Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Autumn Alcove, Council Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

In one, semi-sheltered area of the lake I noticed what appeared to me to be an interesting combination of ripples and reflections and, after moving around a bit to try to get a good spot, snapped off a series of images, experimenting with shutter speed before settling on 1/50 second.

Reflections, Council Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Reflections, Council Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Whenever I’m in the area I make a point of poking around in the woods surrounding Council Lake; I invariably find an intimate scene or two that I like, and this occasion was no exception.

Intimate Autumn, Council Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Intimate Autumn, Council Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

After wrapping up at Council it was mid-morning.  From here, I suggested that we head off to Halfmoon Lake, which we had scouted on Day 1.  My reasoning was similar to that of choosing Red Jack that morning–the Halfmoon area was already at peak, and if we didn’t go now, we might miss out on the best color.  As it turned out, we would visit Halfmoon two more times on the trip, but who knew?

We began by stopping along the road in the forest on the way to Halfmoon Lake.  The photography here can be quite challenging, because there’s so much “clutter,” but I always enjoy playing around with intimate compositions focusing on the numerous birch trunk clusters and surrounding color.

Along the Halfmoon Lake Road, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Along the Halfmoon Lake Road, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

When we ultimately moved down to the lake, it was clear that telephoto “across the lake” landscapes would be the order of the day.  It was still cloudy and there was more than enough wind to essentially snuff out reflections.  Still, the trees surrounding Halfmoon Lake are so varied and so colorful at peak, there was no shortage of compelling compositions available to us.

Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

From the principal shooting spot at Halfmoon, the photographer has something approaching unfettered access to the southern and southeastern shores of the lake.  The southern shore has some nice maples, but is dominated by a dense grove of birches.

Birches, Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Birches, Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Depending on the framing, it’s possible to yin-yang the two.

Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

The far southeastern shore is simply a riot of color, with some comparatively early-turning birch trees strategically sprinkled in for good measure.

Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Halfmoon Lake, Hiawatha National Forest, Michigan

Halfmoon Lake is, hands down, my favorite shooting location in the Hiawatha and we would return to this special place, twice, in very intriguing conditions later during our time in the area.

By the time we felt we’d extracted what we could from Halfmoon, given the conditions on this day, it was late morning and we were now dealing with variable cloudiness and a pretty good breeze.  The question was, what to do now?

Before heading to the UP, I had decided that, on this trip, I was definitely going to visit Tahquemenon Falls State Park.  I’d never been there, mostly because the park is roughly a 180-mile round trip from Munising–making it a very long excursion.  But I’d been strongly urged to go there by several photographers that I respect and I asked Terry if he was up to making the journey.  We’d be gone for the rest of the day, I was certain, and wouldn’t be back until well after dark.  He was game, so after zipping back to the motel for a pit stop and to pick up a few things, we were off.

The park is just south of the small town of Paradise, well to the southeast of Munising.  The route is a simple one, but it takes between 90 minutes and two hours to drive there.  We arrived early in the afternoon, by which time we were dealing with partly cloudy and breezy conditions.

The main attraction at Tahquemenon is the Upper Falls.  The Tahquemenon River is roughly 200 feet across at the point of the Upper Falls and the drop is nearly 50 feet.  It’s an impressive site.  We hit the Upper Falls area first, paid our park admission fee, and then went to scout the location.  The trail from the parking area runs roughly 1/3 mile and leads to a bluff trail that runs both towards and away from the waterfall itself, well above river level.  There are several observation platforms as you approach the Upper Falls and we stopped at each one and sized it up.  Shooting conditions were less than ideal, so we decided to use this as scouting time, with the intention of going to the Lower Falls area to shoot next, and then returning late in the afternoon to shoot the Upper Falls.  After following the bluff trail all the way to the cusp of the waterfall, we walked downriver to a staircase of well over 100 steps that led down to a lengthy boardwalk that sat about 20 feet above river level and ran upriver below the bluff for several hundred feet back in the direction of the waterfall.  In the interest of time, I ran down there by myself to check it out, and noted several potentially attractive shooting perspectives.

It was mid-afternoon by the time we decamped for the Lower Falls.  Lower Tahquemenon Falls is actually a series of cataracts, on both sides of an island that divides the Taquememon River into two streams.  There’s a small boat rental kiosk below the island, and a rowboat is the only means for accessing the island, which offers a variety of different views of the Lower Falls.  We decided that we didn’t have time to explore the island on this visit–which was too bad, because it appeared to provide excellent access to an area rich in photographic opportunities.  Next time.

The sun was becoming less of a factor as we reached the Lower Falls parking area, which was mostly empty when we got there.  The first thing I spotted at the parking area was a marvelous old birch tree that I simply had to photograph.  (This was the source of Part 3 of the “Seeing in the Field” series of blog entries.)

Birch Trident, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan Image Copyright Kerry Mark Leibowitz, All Rights Reserved

Birch Trident, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan
Image Copyright Kerry Mark Leibowitz, All Rights Reserved

From the parking area, a trail runs up-river, along the right side, with several wide perspectives of the waterway on both sides of the island, before it reaches the series of cascades on the south side of the river.  We decided to make our way all the way up to the cascades and then work back, under the theory that the lighting situation would get better as time went along.  This worked out well, as several of the long shots of the river were in harsh sunlight–the skies were partly cloudy by now–when we started out but were in the even light of full shade on our return.  So we moved a half mile or so up the trail and then slowly photographed our way back toward the parking area.  We still wanted to shoot the Upper Falls before it got dark.

The Lower Falls area was stuffed full of shooting possibilities–and this is without even having access to the island.  It’s too bad we didn’t have more time in the area, and now that I’ve seen what there is, I could easily spend several days shooting at Tahquemenon, probably two or three days just in the Lower Falls area.  That realization was worth the price of admission alone.  But given that we only had an hour or two, I aimed to make the most of it.

Lower Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Lower Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

I was particularly intrigued with one cascade area–so intrigued, in fact, that I hiked nearly 1/4 of a mile farther upriver than I had planned to get a closer look.  It was an effort more than rewarded, I think.  I shot several images from this spot, and converted some of them to black and white–something that (until this trip) had rarely been on my mind on previous occasions when I was ostensibly shooting fall color.  But this was to be the first of a number of instances during my time in the UP where the thought “black & white” popped prominently into my head while I was in the field.

Lower Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Lower Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

But not all of the shots were converted; some remained in full color:

Lower Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Lower Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

This intimate along the trail back downriver screamed at me to photograph it.  This could have been another “seeing in the field” example, because my mind was ostensibly on waterfalls and rapids, not intimates like this.  And yet…

Fall Color Intimate, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Fall Color Intimate, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Finally, the broad shot of the north side of the river was in full shade by the time we had retraced our steps far enough to reach the shooting site again.

Lower Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Lower Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

By the time we got back to the car, it was less than an hour before sunset.  We had to get back to the Upper Falls area, hike to the bluff trail access point and then find our shots before we lost the light entirely.  There wouldn’t be time to shoot from both the bluff and the boardwalk that was much closer to river level.  Given that fact, it was pretty easy to establish consensus that there was more bang to the buck on the bluff, so that’s where we headed.

We had identified two perspectives, during the bad-light-scouting session, that we thought provided the best vantage points and both were upriver, approaching the Upper Falls.  The first one was more of a head-on, aerial perspective.  I chose to pull in as much of the framing color as I could and you can view that below.  Two things inhibited me as I was taking this shot.  One is that the foliage on those overhanging branches kept dancing in the breeze.  It was getting dark by this time and I wasn’t getting much of a shutter speed so I had to wait it out.  Fortunately, the wind had died down considerably at this point and there were lulls.

Upper Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Upper Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

The other distraction was a woman who kept asking me what format she should use on her point-and-shoot camera to get the shot.  I told her that there really wasn’t a right or wrong answer to that question; it all depended on what she wanted.  She gave me a funny look and handed me the camera.

I said, “Well, for instance, this 3:2 format would give you a traditional 35mm output.  4:5 will give you something closer to a square, with one side 25% longer than the other.  This 16:9 format…that’s kind of a panorama…”

“That’s a panorama?” she virtually shouted.  “I never knew that!  Thanks very much!”  And she took the camera from me.  I gratefully returned to what I was doing.

After wrapping up at this point, I joined Terry, who had moved along to the platform right near the falls.  There were some very intriguing shots to be had from here, much better than I normally expect from these large, powerful waterfalls.

Upper Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Upper Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

I played around with some longer exposures (the above shot is 10 seconds), utilizing one of my neutral density filters in conjunction with a polarizer, to gain the tailing action in the river below the falls, but for the final, wider shot of the day, I did a couple of things I don’t often do.  The first was open up to f/5.6 with a wide angle lens.  The second was shoot downriver.  I also removed the ND filter to retain definition in the sky (and minimize any chance of blowing foliage on the trees across the river.

Upper Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

Upper Tahquemenon Falls, Tahquemenon Falls State Park, Michigan

That was the last shot of the day, taken at roughly 7:20 PM, several minutes after sunset, but while there was still some ambient light.  It was almost completely dark by the time I got back to the parking lot and it was well after 9 PM by the time we got back to Munising.  It had been a very long day–we took off from the motel at 6:40 that morning–and since the forecast for the next morning was a 100% chance of rain, we pondered whether we should give ourselves a break the following day.

Next in this Series:  Day 4:  Probing the Pictured Rocks Shutdown



  1. You’ve convinced me; I’ll be checking out Red Jack Lake and Council Lake in the future. I really like the more abstract photos – they’re a nice way to incorporate fall colors without just showing trees (not that I’m averse to that either!).

    • Thanks. I think you’ll find both lakes to be well worth your while (how’s that for alliteration? :)).

      I like to play around with abstracts from time to time; it’s usually a serendipitous thing, however. I seldom specifically go looking for them.

  2. Great stuff, Kerry. On the top photo, I might have tilted the camera up to get the horizon away from the middle, but that’s just my preference. 🙂

    • Thanks, Frank.

      Regarding that first image, I was very deliberately going for a vertical symmetry look; the horizon was not centered by accident. Just one of those cases when I felt the “rules” needed to be broken. 🙂

  3. I’m really enjoying following your journey through The UP day by day. This post/days images are extra special, thank you for giving us a glimpse of how you work and showing such a variety of beautiful images.

    • Thanks very much for the gracious words–they’re much appreciated!

  4. Finally got around to reading your post, published early this morning. I immediately followed your blog after merely a quick glance at your photography, and my curiosity was rewarded. To my untrained eye, all of these photographs are worthy of publication in National Geographic. My favorite is the black and white photograph of the waterfall, as the desaturation allows you to focus on the beautiful texture of the water. But what I also enjoy is your detailed description of all the work you had to do to make these shots possible. A 15-hour workday! And though I don’t understand all of the technical jargon, perhaps I will pick up a term or two simply by reading this blog. Cheers! (And sorry for the novella)

    • Thanks very much for weighing in and the very last thing you should feel compelled to do is apologize for a “lengthy” (an inherently relative term, which is in the eye of the beholder anyway) comment. Feel free to post a full-blown novel, if you like.

      Thanks for the kind words about my photography, and my apologies for the use of any technical, proprietary jargon. I consciously try to avoid that sort of thing, unless I’m posting a tutorial, so if there’s something that’s unclear to you, please let me know and I’ll be more than happy to attempt to clarify.

      Again, many thanks.

  5. I’m stunned by these photos!

    I’ve shot the same falls in about the same light from the same angles and composition, yet yours are so much better than mine. How do you get the foliage exposed correctly without blowing out the white in the water or the sky?

    I think that I understand why people ask you about the 800 E, isn’t that the model without a low pass filter and with anti-aliasing removed? And isn’t its forte supposed to be landscape photography because of that?

    • First, the camera. The D800E actually does have an AA filter, but the guts of the camera are arranged so that the effect of the AA filter is removed in-camera. It’s kind of convoluted and stands, at least technically, in contrast with the D7100 (among other cameras) which quite literally has no AA filter at all.

      But here’s the thing about the questions I’ve received in the field from other photographers about the D800E: 1) not a single person has ever brought up the issue of the AA filter–not one; 2) most of the people who have asked me about the camera have one themselves.

      To your question about the Tahquemenon shots:

      “How do you get the foliage exposed correctly without blowing out the white in the water or the sky?”

      My answer has multiple parts, but the first part of my reply is easy: it really helps to use a camera with exceptional dynamic range, and the D800/E is that camera. According to DxO, it’s rated at more than 14 EVs of DR at base ISO (100). My experience with the camera confirms this. As someone who shot a lot of high contrast transparency film back in the day and became used to 4-6 stops of exposure latitude, the evolution of digital camera sensor technology as it pertains to DR has been a revelation. My previous primary camera body–the D700, which now serves as my backup–had 12 or 13 EVs of DR and I thought that was amazing. The 800 series is, miraculously, even better and is quite a testament to the folks at Sony who developed it. But this is the biggest factor in answering your question–the first two shots of the upper falls were based on a single exposure and–here’s the second part of your answer–were optimized using a variation on the editing technique that I laid out here.

      (I hasten to point out that the final Upper Falls image–the one that included some sky–is a manual blend of two images. I could have done this, theoretically, with one shot, but not in a way that I could have rendered the water flow they way I wanted.)

      • Well, as far as people asking about your camera even though they have one, I’d rather have that happen than people who as if I’m getting any good pictures, or even worse, ask if I’m taking pictures.

        I was just going by what little I had read about the 800 E, it must be that even writers of online magazines don’t quite understand it. 😉

        Thanks for the explanation of how you get such even lighting in your photos. That post that you linked to in your reply was before I had begun following your blog, I should go back and read your older entries to pick up more tips. I do appreciate it.

        • “I was just going by what little I had read about the 800 E, it must be that even writers of online magazines don’t quite understand it.”

          You’re right; I found a mess of articles on the Web stating that the D800E “has no AA filter.” While that’s effectively the case, technically it’s not true.

          “Thanks for the explanation of how you get such even lighting in your photos. That post that you linked to in your reply was before I had begun following your blog, I should go back and read your older entries to pick up more tips. I do appreciate it.”

          Happy to help.

  6. Gorgeous, gorgeous, and gorgeous! Kerry, these are such beautiful images; the semi-abstract of the log and water especially caught my attention, as did the rippled water reflection. Your timing for this trip seems perfect, as witnessed by the images of fall color that you captured.

    • Thanks very much, Lynn. Yeah, we definitely got the timing right. Given the microclimate nature of the area, it’s literally impossible to catch peak for the entire breadth of the region we shot in during this trip without being on the ground for a minimum of two weeks, but the goal was to catch peak at all of the Hiawatha N.F. hot spots, and that we did…but we caught a number of other areas at peak as well.

  7. Just found your blog! I like it very much! A nice blog!

    Kah-Wai Lin

    • Thanks very much! By the way, you have some terrific images on your website.

  8. […] was foreshadowed in the previous post in this series, the morning of Day 4 brought rain, and plenty of it.  Sunrise was a rumor, so we didn’t […]

  9. Wow Kerry…I love reading about your adventures/photography outings. Your descriptives make me fell like I was there with you and your images are spot on! Mother nature certainly put on a grand show for you this year!

    • Thanks very much, David.

  10. I don’t know how I missed this day 3 post until now but I am glad that I followed the link and read it. Day 3 was a good day and a fun day. Firstly that guy to your left at Red Jack that was from the Gerlachs crew was quite fun to listen to. I loved him telling you that he choose to leave his “lanscape” camera at home in favor of his “action” camera. Now he did not use those words as you already know but understanding the primary differences between the D4 and the D800 from my Canon perspective tells me that I would use the D4 when I shoot my sports and if I was the owner of both that D4 and the D800 then I sure would bring the mega pixel beast out to shoot those landscapes that don’t require 10 FPS. 🙂

    Anyway, great shots. I shot the lake with the same sort of symmetry as anything higher in the sky was just negative space and to me a reflection shot like that one can break some of the traditional rules with little regret.

    We covered a lot of ground on this day but I will tell you that I think we could have spent an entire day in and around lower Tahquemenon Falls as there was some interesting shots there. I did not come away from there very satisfied with my own shots as I just was not seeing it when it was in front of me and I just kept seeing shots “over there” that I wished I could get to. That happens to me sometimes and then it is like a little mini funk sets in. I think my shots suffered a little bit that day when on the lower end for that reason. Good thing is that you did a great job of capturing it and if I ever get back there I will probably devote more time to that section right there.

    • Hey Terry–always great to read your comments, since you were present for all of this.

      Re D4/D800E…exactly. As I think I mentioned in the entry itself, if you own a D800E and you’re not going to use it to landscapes at places like Red Jack Lake, I don’t know why you’d own one at all.

      Agreed on the lake reflection shots.

      And, definitely agree on Tahquemenon Falls. I honestly think that several days could easily be spent in that park, and the area around the Lower Falls is probably good for at least one full (very long) day (with ideal conditions) or possibly two. I have a feeling I could spend the better part of a full cloudy day just on that island between the two river segments. That we didn’t have time to rent a boat and explore that island is probably my biggest regret of the entire time we were up there. (Only real competition was the White Birch Forest still being green.) We were far more limited in terms of perspectives of the various tiers of the Lower Falls given our shooting spots than would have been the case on the island. I have a feeling that our limitations led to your “funk.” I know I felt that myself, to some extent.

  11. […] Day 3 […]

  12. […] Day 3 […]

  13. […] scouted the location on Day 1, and then had returned to photograph under cloudy conditions on Day 3 and foggy conditions on Day 5), we noticed that the car thermometer read 28 degrees F  And it was, […]

  14. […] Day 3 […]

  15. unique!

  16. Kerry, now I am even in more of an awe of your words to me. This article is exceptional! I love the abstract one of the log, and all the waterfalls blew my mind away. I really love the way your eyes see and just by reading and looking at your work, you have given me more ideas. I am not working with the greatest camera, but I am doing my best with it until I can afford a better one. I work with a Canon, and seeing the amount I have invested in lenses, I am not about to switch to Nikon. This article my attention was riveted, just fascinated. Thank you so much for putting together such a complex article. I will be back here again, to view your work, read your words, and learn from you. Again, thank you SO much for everything. xx Amy

    • Thanks very much, Amy; you’re too kind.

      Just a few quick notes: re your camera, if you’re getting the results you want, why get a new one? Unless there’s something specific about your present camera that’s holding you back (for instance, if you were into photographing wildlife and your camera had a tiny buffer or was very slow to autofocus or something like that, it might–MIGHT–be worth looking into upgrading) in some tangible way, there’s no reason to cough up the cash necessary to move up. The vast majority of the time–and I’m speaking generally, not about you specifically–whatever shortcoming people find with their photography is a function of something other than their camera.

      As for Canon…again, why switch? There would have to be a very, very compelling reason to even consider doing so, IMO. I’m shooting with Nikon gear as a legacy thing. I became vested in it when I was still shooting film and I really didn’t want to reinvest in an alternative product line (or adapt to a new set of ergonomics). Right now, I’m happy I’m shooting Nikon. There were plenty of times during the 2000s when I would much rather have been shooting with Canon equipment, at least in theory.

      So, I wouldn’t sweat any of that. Keep on exploring and pushing the boundaries. If/When a camera upgrade (or even a brand switch) makes any sense, you’ll know it.

      • Thank you, Kerry!!!! I more or less just had this conversation today and bottom line, it is who is behind the camera that counts. I really am happy with my camera, how it feels in my hands, how it functions, and how it amazes me every time I use it. I just came back from shooting more waterfalls, and I was SO happy with what I captured, I was doing jigs at the creekbed. The only regret I hold I SHOULD have gotten more of the trees and scenery around the waterfalls. I did to some extent, but the fascination I had for those falls just pulled me. That and the time element. I only had a certain window of time so I used it to the best of my ability. Thank you for what you said here and I mean it. Some people who I do associate with, get me on the “oh I MUST get a better camera” and there right there, I stop myself. No. I LOVE my camera. And because I believe in working with what you have, instead of always wanting more, that is what I do. I push the limits. I did today. I don’t know when I will be posting the pics I took today … I have SO many already I am just shaking my head and laughing. Perhaps this being the busy season for me, I am getting stocked up for the lean months (winter) when I am so limited to SNOW. I even bought a backpack today so that now I can bring my equipment with me when I ride my bike, except my tripod. Darn I just thought about that. I do have a smaller tripod, hmmmm…..but I don’t much like it. Well it looks like I am going to come to like it. LOL Can you tell how excited I am about how well the shoot went today?? I’m like a kid today!

        • Looking forward to seeing what you came up with–once you’ve had the opportunity to post. 🙂

        • I have two posts up this day, and tomorrow, if I can do it, I have a post planned showing the difference between a fast shutter speed and a slow one of the exact same area in a creek. I have all the photos done, and I wrote all the shutter speeds down as well. I just have to put the post together, that’s all. (GROAN)

          Today I rode my bike to some pretty amazing falls, and on the way there it began to rain. Wonderful! Cloud cover! Perfect! Wouldn’t you know it, as I was about half way through the shoot, the sun came out, spoiling my fun. I will return another day, not today, oh no! Riding about 6 miles with about 25 pounds in a backpack, inclusive of my tripod, is enough for me for one day. I’m pooped! I also slid down a very steep path to get to a spot where I wanted to snap my camera. Perfect spot. I don’t like redoes. I like getting one spot out of the way, and going on to the next. Who knows? Perhaps when I open my editor to view these pics I will be satisfied with what I did get. Could be you know. (smile)

  17. OH, I unfollowed you then followed you again. For some reason you have not been in my reader. I found you of all places in my email. So now to make sure you are IN my reader, (hopefully) I did what I did. Just in case you wonder …. (smile)

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