vista house

How I spent my Labor Day weekend. by Kenton Waltz

Photography is my biggest driving force. It is my passion and my career. Because of this, it can be easy for me to overwork. With the start of my current marketing campaigns, I have been working a lot more 12-hour days than usual. I wake up and break out my laptop, then go to bed when the laptop closes... Labor Day weekend arrived at the perfect time... 

I decided to take this holiday seriously. I wanted to explore something outside of Portland. I needed something to look up at, to marvel. So I decided to rent a Car2Go and head to the Columbia River Gorge. Lucky for me I already had really nice rentals from a project with Oh! Creative. This included a Nikon D850, Nikon's best full-frame DSLR. With great gear and a fancy rental car, I headed east on 84. 

My first stop was the Bonneville Dam. This massive structure, built as a part of The New Deal, generates 5 Billion kWh of electricity each year. It is definitely a structure I could marvel at for a few hours. I wandered around the National Historic Landmark for a few hours, checking out the dam, the fish hatchery, and the fish ladders. 

As the sun started to set, I left the Bonneville Dam to find a good vantage for the setting sun. One of my favorite drives is the Historic Columbia River Highway. This road leads you through Corbett, OR to various sights (Vista House, Multnomah Falls, Latourelle Falls). Vista House is an obvious place to watch the sunset. BUT! Chanticleer Point is a great place to watch Vista House at sunset. Chanticleer Point is also known as Portland's Women's Forum State Scenic Viewpoint.

It was at Chanticleer Point that I setup the D850 to take advantage of it's 8k timelapse feature. Side Note: I love creating timelapse. They always seem to bring out the sense wonder in me. And let me tell you, an 8k timelapse is intense. It took about 12 hours to process and generated a 23GB, 50 second file. Please enjoy the timelapse video. Take note of the American Empress sternwheeler coming through the gorge and the birds flying away from Vista House. 

All in all it was a rejuvenating day. The fresh air and sight seeing did wonders for my creative batteries. I know I will be able to work much better this week because of my time off. I'll have to take time off again sometime. Maybe next weekend!