Stock landscape and outdoor adventure photos from Oregon, Washington, and the Pacific Northwest

Mt. Hood, Hood River and seasonal photo vacations

As winter starts to drag in the High Desert area of Central Oregon around Bend, I tend to day dream about photo trips elsewhere in Oregon where the winter season doesn’t seem to extend quite so long.  Don’t get me wrong, I love living in Bend but our relatively high elevation make for consistently cold nights which seems to extend our winters longer than my perpetually cold wife would prefer.  One of our favorite getaways involves visiting our friends, the Reitzs in Hood River, Oregon.  Hood River tends to be more gray than Bend in the winter but spring comes considerably earlier there and the wildflowers in the Hood River are often stunning.  The Hood River area simply has a better climate for spring flowers.  One of my favorite Hood River Photography locations is the East Hills area of the Hood river Valley.  The wildflowers in the east hills vary from year to year, they don’t last very long but they are absolutely phenomenal in some years.  The first year My good friend, Max insisted that I consider taking some photos from the east hills area, I reluctantly obliged.  I initially felt that I would have already been familiar with the location if the wildflowers were as attractive as Max suggested.  I couldn’t have been more wrong.  They were simply amazing.  I drove into the ill defined parking area for sunrise and I was so impressed that when I returned to our home away from home at the Reitz home I insisted that we all go back for a hike in the East Hills where I’d just returned from. For another adventure that we shared with Max and Chris Reitz, check out our Italian Adventure photos. The following image is one of my favorites from that morning photographing in the East Hills of the Hood River Valley.  Mt. Hood is seen in the background the flowers in the foreground include balsamroot, Indian paintbrush, and lupines.  Doesn’t it seem like this wouldd be a perfect cover photo for a Columbia River Gorge tourism brochure?

 

Photo/picture of Mt. Hood and spring wildflowers high above the Hood River Valley in the Columbia River Gorge

Photo/picture of Mt. Hood and spring wildflowers high above the Hood River Valley in the Columbia River Gorge

I like the contrast between the agricultural Hood River valley and the wild and beautiful east hills wildflower display which were pretty amazing during that year.  Mt. Hood is always a photo worthy mountain, especially when snow covered as in this image.  Part of what makes the Hood River valley so scenic is the fact that it is near sea level and that Mt. Hood is visible high above at 11,240 offering some very impressive vertical relief.  The following photo is one I’ll include simply because it makes me happy.  It is of my daughter, Emma and JoJo Reitz .  I love their laughing and smiling faces and all the happy wildflowers surrounding them.  I took many family photos this morning but this one seemed especially playful and captured the feeling of spring the best.

 

JoJo and Emma giggling in the wildflowers high above the Hood River Valley

JoJo and Emma giggling in the wildflowers high above the Hood River Valley

     Another one of my favorite photo locations lies slightly east of Hood River in an undisclosed location.  It has a slightly different photo appeal to me because it is distinctly less developed than the Hood River area.  I tend to avoid man made structures in my landscape images but that can be very difficult in Hood River because of its famed agricultural production.  The following photo is also of Mt. Hood.  I find the vast flower meadow with little indication of farming or agriculture makes for an attractive picture.  

Photo/picture ofMt. Hood and wildflower meadow in the Columbia River Gorge

Photo/picture ofMt. Hood and wildflower meadow in the Columbia River Gorge

This Image and the previous photo were both taken with my large format 4×5 camera which necessitated fairly long exposures that can be frustrating because of the famed Columbia River Winds which can wreak havoc on a large format landscape photograph.  I was fortunate to avoid the winds on both of these photo outings.  The next image is one of the first I ever took as a professional photographer.  I also captured this image with my 4×5 camera on a rare windless day.  At the time I was still struggling with focus, perspective control and exposure balance associated with using my old Wista 4×5.  Most of the images from this morning ended up in my circular file but this one photo came out nicely and is still a part of our Pacific Crest Stock Wildflower Gallery

photo/picture of Lupines and Balsamroot in the Columbia River Gorge

photo/picture of Lupines and Balsamroot in the Columbia River Gorge

This last image takes me back to the Hood River Valley.  The wildflowers are a little ragged in this image but I still love it because of the sweet expression on the face of my favorite model, Emma.  

Emma on a sunny spring day in the Hood River Valley

Emma on a sunny spring day in the Hood River Valley

If  you would like to see more images from our many visits to the Hood River area of Oregon, please visit our stock photography site, Pacific Crest Stock . To get licensing information about any of our images, please contact us through email   mike@pacificcreststock.com or call (541) 610-4815

Posted by Mike Putnam

All images are copyrighted and exclusively the property of Mike Putnam/Pacific Crest Stock

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    Feb 05, 2009 @ 8:57 pm


  2. Utterly indited subject matter, regards for selective information .

    Utterly indited subject matter, regards for selective information . …

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    Jan 29, 2012 @ 4:23 pm

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