A photographer friend and I decided to take some photographs of Decew Falls in St. Catherines this morning. When speaking to him the evening before and posing the question of what time we were meeting to drive down, my smile faded as he said: “6:30am” In my head I’m screaming at the thought of getting out of bed so early. Okay, so some of you are thinking “isn’t that what you do every time you go out shooting?” Well…my answer to that is NO. First, the joy of the fall/winter season is the fact that the sun comes up later and later on a daily basis. Second, lately I’ve been hiking in a forest where the sun don’t shine so much. These equal out to mean I do not have to get up early to hike. My friend was right in suggesting we get an early start this morning. We were at the site by 8am and the sun was barely peeking out above the treeline.
My next problem was how do we get down into the gorge to get some great photographs of the waterfalls? Well, this was going to be a big problem as we searched for a not too steep area to get down. Eventually we located a tree with a rope tied to it and a shorter drop to the ground below. Ok, fingers crossed I sent my friend down ahead of me….see I’m smart that way, send someone else down first to scout it out. Finally I got the nerve up and shimmied down the short cliff face to the ground below. A little slippery but not too bad, the challenge would be the climb up. eek! Well the dangerous trip to the bottom of the gorge was well worth the shots of Upper Decew falls and Morningstar Mill, and the manmade waterfall Faucet Falls next to it.
After exhausting the shots available to us here and with the sun making things a little harder to photograph we headed down to Lower Decew Falls. Many more trees cover this area so the lighting was perfect for the smaller falls.
After getting my fill of photographs here, I noticed a man and his dog coming up river. I had to stop him to ask if there was an easier way to get up the gorge and to my surprise he said there was! It was a little ways downriver but I would find a much easier way to climb way then the way we came down.
So we scrambled our way downriver (it wasn’t so easy to get downriver as we thought) and eventually found the markers that would lead us back up to the top of the escarpment. Luck was with us that morning and thanks to the man who directed us to a much safer area to climb up.