I spent Friday scouting and shooting in Shenandoah National Park for a spring workshop in 2009. The weather was challenging with thick fog, occasional downpours and windy conditions. With so much rain over the past week and all the fog, I decided to focus my attention on shooting waterfalls and forest scenes. The conditions were absolutely perfect for these subjects on Friday. The hardest part of the day was keeping my lens from fogging up and continually wiping a layer of moisture and rain drops of the front element. I used a garbage bag and umbrella to shield my equipment from the elements. I ended up scouting many locations along Skyline Drive for good locations for a group of 8 -10 clients and then spent the remainder of the day in Dark Hollow Canyon shooting waterfalls, stream scenic’s and inner forest scenes.
After finishing up after dark, I strapped on my headlamp and made the hike out of the canyon and headed over to Big Meadows Lodge to check in and dry off. I didn't do any post processing as I had to get up the next morning at "O dark thirty" to meet the group of clients for the private scouting workshop on Saturday morning.
we had no luck at sunrise, thick heavy fog and heavy rain. We retired to the lodge for breakfast and to wait out the weather. After breakfast we braved the elements and the rain let up, but the fog remained. i decided to take the group down to Dark Hollow Falls. The weather and light conditions were perfect and we all got some really great images. After Dark Hollow, we headed down another trail near Big Meadows to Lewis Spring falls. Lewis Falls drops off into a very deep canyon and can only be photographed from above on a narrow stone ledge. I do plan on making the hike up to the base of Lewis Falls later this year or in the fall. It is to far and grueling of a hike to bring in a workshop group, so I will be going it alone on that one.
After finishing up at Lewis Falls and everyone sufficiently tired from the morning hikes we spent the remainder of the afternoon shooting forest scenic’s and grand scenes from the many overlooks in the vicinity of Big Meadows and Skyland. Around 2:30 in the afternoon the sky began to clear a bit and the fog broke up. We were treated to some really amazing clouds and light for the remainder of the day into sunset. I would like to thank my workshop clients for being so positive and enthusiastic even with the cold, wet weather and challenging conditions. I know everyone came away with some great shots of this beautiful park.
Here are some of my Top Selects from Friday and Saturday. Enjoy, Joe.