Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Green Point Mountain Trail Run

Trail running and photography is an area I have dabbled in over the years. However, combining these two passions of mine has always been a bit of a challenge due to the weight of high quality camera gear. Sure, I could run with a small point and shoot camera, but it won't give me the quality I'm looking for in a big print. SLR's I've determined are too heavy and cumbersome for the runs I like to go on. Camera makers the past few years have introduced a new hybrid digital camera that offers superior image quality in a compact, lightweight body. I recently purchased the Olympus E-PM1 for the sole purpose of trail running photography. Last week I tested it out in the Columbia River Gorge. I found a new loop that takes one up Nick Eaton Ridge to Green Point Mountain (4,700') and then down to Herman Creek. The camera was everything I'd hoped it would be in terms of quality and portability. Witnessing the light phenomenon, known as the Spectre of Brocken, while I was up there was unbelievable. It was only the second time in my life that I've seen it. I was really grateful I had a camera with me to capture it.

This rare meteorological phenomenon, known as the Spectre of Brocken, briefly appeared below Green Point Mountain. I was resting on the 4,700' summit when a shaft of light broke through the clouds and momentarily illuminated the area surrounding the mountain. When I stood up, there below the ridge crest was my magnified shadow projected forward onto the sunlit area of mist-shrouded forest below. It grew in intensity for 5 seconds then gradually faded as passing clouds obscured the sun. The colored rings surrounding my shadow are caused from the diffraction of light as it passes through the water droplets in the air. I only had time to snap 3 images. This particular shot was captured when the light display was at its peak. The lake in the upper right is Rainy Lake. Cascade Mountains, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon

Olympus E-PM1, 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 II R, F8, 31mm, 1/250/sec, ISO 200


Passing clouds and shafts of sunlight lend an atmospheric quality to this view of Mount Defiance and Rainy Lake. I chose a low-angled perspective to showcase the vibrant huckleberry growing along the open ridgeline of Green Point Mountain. Cascade Mountains, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon
Olympus E-PM1, 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 II R, F18, 22mm, 1/80th/sec, ISO 400


High on Nick Eaton Ridge a cluster of moss draped trees display their various forms against a blanket of clouds. Beyond the trees the ridge drops off precipitously a few thousand feet to the east, Cascade Mountains, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon

Olympus E-PM1, 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 II R, F11, 33mm, 1/500th/sec, ISO 200


Self portrait on the summit of 4,700' Green Point Mountain, Cascade Mountains, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon

Olympus E-PM1, 14-42mm F3.5-5.6 II R, F18, 28mm, 1/60th/sec, ISO 320

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