Photography and photojournalism in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest

Columbia River Gorge waterfalls

Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge has something like 75 waterfalls that are accessible to hikers, many of which are not surprisingly landscape photographers. Some of the hikes are relatively easy, while others require a bit more effort. Ponytail Falls, above, is one of the former, with roughly a two-mile hike involved. If you stop there, though, you’re cheating yourself out of several other nearby gems. Some which I’ve visited recently inclue the Triple Falls, Horsetail Falls and several others in the impressive Oneonta Gorge, which is now targeted for my next trip up the Columbia River, hopefully in the coming week.

The shot above was taken with a 20-35mm wide angle zoom lens at f.13 with a one-second exposure. Because of the nicely diffused light, I only used a one-stop ND filter, although that probably wasn’t even needed. I like this image because it nicely shows the old basalt flow above the waterfall. Those Columbia River flood basalts erupted across the Northwest from 14-17 million years ago and covered over 63,000 square miles in what now is Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Nevada. This includes the entirety of what became the Columbia River Gorge. The soaring basalt columns can be seen as you travel along Interstate 84 on either side of the Columbia River, testament to the volcanic nature of our region.

As always, I’m open to comments and criticism, so if anyone has anything along those lines, please feel free to chime in. Thanks!

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4 responses

  1. Gorgeous! I want to hike this now – 75 waterfalls – wow!

    June 17, 2012 at 11:37

    • There are plenty of web resources, but here’s one link that might give you more information! http://columbiarivergorge.info/waterfalls.html

      June 17, 2012 at 12:07

  2. amazing shot

    June 17, 2012 at 12:39

    • Thanks! We’re lucky to live in such a gorgeous location.

      June 17, 2012 at 12:54

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