Multnomah Falls Along the Columbia River

Multnomah Falls Along the Columbia River

by Sean Hoyt

I spent a significant portion of my youth growing up in Vancouver, WA. Situated on the Columbia River, this city is close to so many wonders. I clearly remember Mt. St. Helens blowing in 1980 at the age of 3. The Pacific Ocean is just a few hours West. Silver Falls and Crater Lake a few to the South. The Pacific Northwest is truly endless.

One of my favorite spots is East of Vancouver along the Columbia River Gorge. The mighty river cuts through tall hills on its way out to the ocean and the Multnomah Falls, fed by a combination of mountain snowpack and underground springs, cascade year-round 620 feet down the basalt Southern edge (Oregon side) in two tiers bisected by a pool seen by overlookers standing on a stone bridge.

The falls are quite accessible so that probably helps with its popularity, but that shouldn’t distract from the beauty. One of the first things I did after meeting my future wife was take her on an adventure here.

This photo in my gallery of Multnomah is a complicated panoramic taken with my telephoto lens. Normally, you’d want a very wide lens to grab as much width and height, but with a panoramic, I can zoom in and scan up and down, left and right to recreate a wide-angle photo. A benefit of telephoto is that the grid pattern I shot was tight meaning more final resolution, but it also means that the depth-of-field is much shallower than a normal wide angle capture. If you are not familiar, the more you magnify on something closer to you, the more specific the focus becomes. In this photo, the shallow depth helps convey the depth of the falls basin. 

Sean Hoyt's Multnomah Falls print hanging above couch

For this photo, I focused on the bridge and scanned up and down across the scene. The resulting photo is 700 megapixels which is about 30x more resolution than a current professional dSLR camera. This means you can print large and see the fine details such as people on the bridge and textures in the trees.  

If you visit this spot, check out the historic lodge that was saved from the recent Eagle Creek fire. It’s also fun to stand below the train bridge as a massive locomotive passes overhead. 

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