Sunday, February 10, 2013

Arizona Falls G.R. Herberger Park

I heard about this place a while back and I was out and about and had the opportunity to visit.  You know there aren't many opportunities to see water falls in Phoenix.  Most of the water falls you see in Phoenix and the surrounding areas are typically man made.  This water fall is also man made but gives kind of a unique opportunity to visit and walk behind and sort of around them.  I thought it would be really cool to do some of those long exposure milky types of shots using ND filters and a tripod, but I had traveled only with my basic camera not really intending to end up at the Arizona Falls.

This is part of a park system.  There are running paths and areas to view the falls.  There are three of them grouped pretty much together.  There is one place where you have a view of two falls on either side of you and one behind you.  So if you visit make sure to protect your camera gear from the misting water.  There was a slight breeze when we were there so at times there was a need to keep my camera dry.

The day was sort of unusual for Phoenix in that we had rain the night before.  Yeah, I know rain in Phoenix!  But it provided us with some very nice storm clouds and for once it was possible to get photos of the sky that weren't typically blown out.

So the first time there was rather nice.  I’m sure I’ll go back on different occasions as the park is open 24 hours although the parking lot is open from around 5:30 AM to 10:00 PM.  One of the reasons to go back would be to be better prepared with ND filters and check out the falls at night as they are lit up with coloured lights.

For my first time there realizing I wasn't going to get the long exposure shots I intended I bumped up my ISO a bit and cranked up my shutter speed to 1/1000th of a second.  I went to the other extreme and caught the water in different patterns as it fell.  I used the live view function on the camera for some of the shots simply because my eyes are kind of bad and I like to magnify the view so that I know I’m getting a nice focused shot.  At 1/1000th of a second I knew I was getting about f-8 or so aperture which gave me a nice depth of field.

It was a fun visit.  I was happy with the photos that I got.  I think with some radical PS changes I can make some very interesting backgrounds or photo overlays.

 I would suggest taking a tripod, ND filters, Gradated filter, Polarizing Filter and something to protect your camera from water, like a plastic bag or a rain sleeve. 

Travel Smart Travel Safe


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