Archive for the 'Photography' Category


Shepperd’s Dell Falls (Oregon): By George, thank you……………

My good friend, Joe Berentsen, wrote me to say “I think buying the camera was one of the best investments I’ve ever made. It’s relaxing, peaceful, and fun. There is also a certain excitement going out and exploring. Opening your eyes and really looking at what’s around you. It reminds me of being a kid when everything was new and wonderous.”

Doesn’t that perfectly capture how many of us feel? I think so.

Below are photos Joe took on a recent hike into Shepperd’s Dell Falls near the Columbia River on the Oregon side. The old stone work of the Shepperd’s Dell Bridge, the inviting woods below and the nearby waterfall are typical of many hikes in the vicinity.

photography--shepperds dell bridge-joe berentsen-swittersb


Photography-Oregon-Shepperd's Dell Falls-Joe Berentsen-SwittersB


“In 1915, a local dairy farmer named George Shepperd gave all that he had (this tract of land) to the City of Portland as a memorial to his wife. Today, thousands of visitors along the Historic Columbia River Highway visit this beautiful spot, with its roaring waterfall cascading down steep cliffs into Youngs Creek and out to the Columbia River far below. The upper fall is around 42′ tall. The lower tier is around 50′ tall.

One of the most beautiful and historic highway bridges crosses the canyon here, but you can’t see or appreciate it unless you leave your car and take the short trail to the falls.” Oregon State Parks


Old Thistle

“Who gathers thistles may expect pricks” A Proverb indeed



Rock Me Mama…………


Original Lyrics by Old Crow Medicine Show

Old Crow Wagon Wheel


The Corset & Color Pops!

Sorry if you were expecting to see an unrestrained torso. But these photos, if not delicious, are interesting to the outdoor enthusiast. Often, you see these plastic mesh corsets or sleeves that protect young saplings that are prone to the gnawing teeth of beavers near marshlands and waterways.


Once the tree grows to survive, the mesh pops open as tree, in this case an Alder, expands onward. Yes, it does have similarities to a woman’s torso (alright and a few men as well). 

older tree SwittersB

This time of year, in the wetland/marshland habitat, the grasses and weeds mostly have a vibrant green. There is still the old vegetation/leaves/downed branches, that died down over the cold Winter. It all combines into lots of a green/brown/tan decay palette. So when you see the clusters of color amidst nature’s basic palette they really pop to the eye.

I am not well versed with plant life in the wilds. So, I don’t know if something is a colorful, natural ‘weed’ or inadvertently/intentionally introduced by man/bird. But, this time of year, any color outside the maintained flower beds and pots is appealing to me. 


OK, I guess I owe you corset lovers something (here)


Reflections & Life

“We always see our worst selves. Our most vulnerable selves. We need someone else to get close enough to tell us we’re wrong. Someone we trust.” David Levithan

“A lake is a landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature. It is Earth’s eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.” Henry David Thoreau

“…real childhood scars heal, but not when band-aids replace self-reflection.” Cameron Conaway



Willamette Valley Turtles….unknown to me

If you have followed along with SwittersB, you know I am capable of acknowledging my ignorance or at least displaying it. Today, I had a short time slot to kill before visiting the dentist. I had my camera and a lens I rarely use (Canon 18-55mm…the basic lens the camera came with). I intended to take some wildflower pics and happened upon a portion of the Columbia Slough (runs parallel to the Columbia River on Oregon side). I was standing there studying the water as I usually do. Suddenly I changed my gaze to the wooded debris in the slough and made, for me, a most remarkable discovery….turtles…dozens of good size turtles basking in the afternoon sun. 

Photography-Turtle-Columbia Slough-SwittersB

I tried to take photographs but the lens did not really afford me my usual ability to zoom in closer. I decided to move closer. It wasn’t as if I was aggressive about it, but all the turtles scurried from the log tops into the water as I approached. I wasn’t even close and they sensed my presence and were gone. Now the interesting part, for me, is I had no idea after years of exploring these waters that turtles even inhabited the area. How did I not know that? I have fished for Carp and Bass in these waters. I have photographed up and down the banks of this slough. Yet, not once in all the years had I ever seen a turtle nor thought they lived anywhere near. It just never occurred to me…turtles…hmmm?

Photography-Turtles-Columbia Slough-Portland--SwittersBThe lens was under powered but you get the idea with these fuzzy shots. It was a very pleasant discovery. I did a little research when I got home re turtles in the Portland, Oregon area and learned more. 

photography-red berry--SwittersB


Warning Signs: High Water

“Come hell or high water you will never take me back to the place I was before. I have been through too much to let life whoop me again. My faith is stronger than it’s ever been, my mind is more tenacious than it’s ever been, my soul is more absolute.” TD Jakes

photography-high water-submerged sign-swittersb


Many Happy Returns

“The goose that lays the golden egg likes to lay where there are eggs already.”  Charles Spurgeon




The Garden’s Humorous Side

Twigga mortis

Gardenitus uncontrollius…Plantus unknownus…Bloomis notimus

photography-old clay pot-gardens-SwittersB

“Free Weeds…Pick ‘em” 

“Old Gardeners don’t die; they just go to pot”



Vines: Probing, Intruding, Prying………

“A doctor can bury his mistakes, but an architect can only advise his clients to plant vines”

Frank Lloyd Wright (Chaotic Life of Design)

Photography-old wood-vines-SwittersB

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