Gorge Panoramas: The Beginning

While standing outside of the Columbia Gorge Interpretive Center in the rain Logan, one of my best friends and a post processing genius, insisted he wanted a panorama of the Gorge from where we were standing. I told him we could do it, but we would either have to climb a tree or get on top of the Museum. We both agreed neither of those things was going to happen today so we retreated to our respective vehicles and called it a day.

As I drove down Highway 14 toward the Bridge of the Gods, I looked back toward Stevenson and saw the clouds had parted. There was a rainbow spanning the Columbia, I saw my chance to get Logan his panorama. Pulling over by Ashes Lake I grabbed my camera, and started running back toward Stevenson. My jumping over the guardrail and was met by the sound of falling rocks as the rain soaked bank gave way. The sound of the train whistle as it passed by the old Co-Ply told me I had about 30 seconds to get up the train track embankment and into a safe spot before the train arrived at my location.

I knew I wouldn’t make it and even if I did, it would put me in a very unsafe situation, so I decided to stay put until the train passed. I could see the rainbow moving away from me and the clouds gathering again. I knew I had to get up and over the tracks as soon as possible.

As the final car passed, I stepped up for the shot. The scene was almost perfect. The clouds were still open leaving blue sky over the river. The rainbow was vivid and far enough away that it didn’t dominate the scene. There were patches of snow on the mountains, and best of all, it wasn’t pouring down rain!

Shortly after finishing the shot the rain began to fall. I was OK with it though. I knew I had taken the photo(s) I needed. Now it was up to Logan to work his magic in the digital darkroom. Panoramas really are one of the best ways to capture the scope of the Columbia Gorge. I am excited to announce that this is only the beginning. Stay tuned for even more panoramic views of the Gorge. All panoramas will be available for purchase in the coming months. If you have a place you would like to see me shoot let me know in the comments below. You can also let me know on facebook or twitter. In the mean time enjoy the view.

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