Archive for hoyt arboretum

Autumn in PDX

Posted in Photo Stories with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 5, 2012 by chamimage

Autumn Waterfall

I was worried that we wouldn’t have any fall colors this year in the Northwest due to the dry summer and early fall.

I knew the Portland Japanese Garden would have some color due to its various maple tree species. The first weekend in November is ideal there, but if you want to photograph the Japanese maples you need to go earlier.

Due to totally forgetting to set my clock back I was an hour early for the 10 am opening of the gardens, so stopped at Hoyt Arboretum and the Viet Nam Memorial on the way.

Washington Park Railroad

The fall color in the west hills of Portland were amazing. why was I worried? Conditions were perfect, with just the right amount of leaves on the ground, while the trees were not looking the least bit bare yet.

The Japanese Garden was awesome as well. As I was approaching the parking area I remembered that I had made a note to myself last visit to come on a Monday next time to be able to take a wide angle photograph without twenty people in it.

Needless to stay, I forgot and the garden was packed with people. There were more tripods than I have ever seen there, despite the two dollar tripod fee. The problem with Monday is that they are only open from noon to 4 pm on Monday instead of 10-4 like on Sunday. I had planned on working fairly tight this time, anyway, so the people didn’t bother me much except where the path was narrow. I missed only one shot because it was just too narrow for people to get around my tripod and there was no end to the stream of people wanting to get by.


One of my classic photographs is the waterfall pond with leaves swirling in an eddy in front of the waterfall. My best shot of that is on film and I have been trying to get it on a digital image. Last visit the swirl was too slow despite a dark, brooding sky giving me a long exposure, and the blur was not as good. Yesterday there were no leaves in the water. I’m not sure if someone removed them, or if the source tree was removed.

I entertained myself with koi blurs in both ponds. I’ll probably post those in a later blog after I’ve had time to process them.

It turns out that I could have entertained myself shooting fall colors in the West Hills of Portland all day without the Japanese Garden, but who can pass up red, orange, white, and pink maple leaves, koi, a waterfall, leaves on water, leaves on rocks, and emerald green moss everywhere?