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Crossover Falls  Chris Carvalho/Lensjoy.com



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Crossover Falls is found on the Eagle Creek trail in the Columbia Gorge, one of the most popular hikes in the scenic area.  It's a special sight for many reasons.  The hike is four miles one-way from the road, but the trail passes right next to it making the waterfall one of the most accessible along the trail.  The basalt formation where it runs creates a multitude of lovely cascades that add an unusual texture.  The creek funnels into the falls as it drops into a narrow, deep canyon in two separate flows that cross over each other on their way down.  In 2004 when I took this picture it was an excellent year for yellow Glacier Lilies (Erythronium grandiflorum) and they seemed to be everywhere that day.  Even large boulders in the middle of the creek were covered in the bright yellow blooms.  I've spent many afternoons there enjoying lunch and contemplating the beauty.  

The creek was running high and thunderous with spring snowmelt, and this was an especially challenging photo because so much water at close range created air currents that kept the flowers in almost constant motion.  I spent most of the afternoon there and as the light was fading I finally had a few moments to get a shot.  Because of the wide range of shadow and highlight it was a difficult print to make and I spent many weeks on one version, only to discard it and start completely over and try a different approach that gave much better results.  

The falls and the canyon below it are a playground for water ouzels.  I was dumbfounded to see them flying up the tight curves of the canyon at top speed and plunge into the fastest part of the waterfall, emerging from the other side without any change to their path and keep going on up the creek.  They made a loud, joyful chatter along the way and it was clearly a lot of fun for them.  


Info:  Chromira digital print of Provia 100F 645 chrome, Fuji Crystal Archive CD paper

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