Lower Eagle Ridge Ramble

CK Wright Photo Trips

On Saturday I spent time exploring the lower Eagle Ridge slopes walking the various mountain bike trails, all with very descriptive names that often indicate the perils for the riders; The Dentist, Sidewinder, Fat Bastard, Four Lost Souls, and Massage Therapy. It was an overcast day so I figured that forest and creek photography would be a good fit and I do very much enjoy this area. It really was a ramble kind of outing, often with not much purpose nor direction except the desire to explore and photograph.  There was one location though that I wanted to photograph, and that was the upper Noons Creek waterfall.

There are trails on both sides of Noons Creek near this waterfall, but the access on the east side is pretty sketchy at best and the one time I was there it appeared that there was not a clear shot of the falls. So to the west sided I headed, leaving the trail and walking across the spongy coastal forest floor until I arrived at Noons Creek.  It was a beautiful site indeed, with the waterfall split into two sections with a short flat stretch between them.  The lower section was fairly easy to access and with a clear view as the creek drops off the rock edge.

The upper section was a different story as it sits in a 40 foot rock chasm which makes accessing it very difficult.  With careful scouting and yes, even assessing my sanity, I did find a route down to the base of the upper section of the waterfall.  Finding a clear view of the waterfall was a challenge with the numerous logs and boulder jammed into it.

While I was down there, I found several other compositions to photograph including this one that shows the vantage point (lowest left rock ledge) that I used to photograph the lower section from.

After a few hours exploring the upper waterfall, I joined up with a friend and we rambled further up the slope passing by numerous bridges and technical features that the biking community has built.

We found this patch of bracken ferns with moss covered Douglas-fir trees along with a few devils clubs.  This is a good example of where the overcast lighting was essential to the success of the photo.  The ferns are very reflective and will easily “wash out” with too much light.

My friend spotted these bunch berry flowers nestled on the south west facing slope above Noons Creek.

As we descended the steep slopes on the eastern side of the lower Eagle Ridge, I noticed this group of western hemlock seedlings growing out of the western red cedar stump.  There is a certain symmetry to the composition that I though would make an interesting photo.

I liked this next photograph with the circular pattern of the deer fern and the contrasting tones of green with it and the adjacent sword fern, all of which sits on the brown toned forest floor material.

Nearing the end of the forest trails there was one more opportunity to photograph the mountain streams, in this instance it is a tributary to Scott Creek.

As we exited the forest onto a natural gas pipeline right of way, there were numerous patches of flowers including lupines.

It was certainly a productive 16km outing covering a wide area of the lower Eagle Ridge and some sections I had not previously hiked.


Update – June 19, 2017: An earlier version of this post stated “David Creek” when it should have stated “Scott Creek”. CK Wright

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