— Dane Creek

Hoh Rainforest, WA

Canon 5D Mark II, 70-200 f/2.8L IS II. 200mm, ISO 3200, 1/60 sec. @ f/2.8.

Remember how I said yesterday the weather was rainy and windy, and that was the forecast good day for the trip? The forecast was right. Today was worse.

When it rains, where do you go? The rainforest of course!

Every time we’ve gone to the Hoh Rainforest I’ve always found the best shooting to be outside the actual park, on the right side of the road at a nice sweeping curve. The left is a field, which isn’t interesting. But the forest on the right is awesome, and in the span of about 1/4 mile presents three very different looks at a rainforest.

Today when we were driving up the road in the rain I was staring blankly out the window when I saw a vine maple peeking out of the forest. Brakes were slammed, David whipped off a k-turn, and I was out of the car standing in the rain. No time for rain hoods, tripods, etc. Crank the ISO, turn on the lens stabilization, and hope for the best. The light was perfect, and I didn’t want to lose it. The result is above.

The challenge of shooting in the Hoh is how incredibly messy the underbrush is. There’s crap everywhere and getting a shot where things stand out is extremely hard. Rather than fight the mess I figured I’d celebrate it, and the light catching off the vine maple makes it stand out just enough from the rest of the forest clutter.

This isn’t my favourite image from the trip, and it still needs some processing work, but it’s definitely one I’m proud of.

(By the way, this image was pre-visualized in B&W. There’s no way it would look good in colour, and post-processing proved it. The colour image is ugly!)