December 7th, 2014 | by Dave Ingram | 6 Comments
Published in BC Parks, Destinations, Landscapes, Nature Photography, Nature Viewing, Waterfalls
Tags: BC Parks, British Columbia, Creeks, Long Exposures, Rosewall Creek, Rosewall Creek Provincial Park, Vancouver Island, Water, Waterfalls
I like the hike up Rosewall Creek—it’s fairly easy going and the walk doesn’t take much more than 45 minutes to get to the first view point of the main falls. At this time of year, the water levels are high and accessing good view points for photography is challenging.
Today I had the creek to myself, not another person on the trail (unless they came and went while I was focused on a long exposure). I had unintentionally left my 6-stop B+W Neutral Density filter at home and so had to resort to the 10-stop ND filter which I had brought with me. On a grey, overcast day, the 10-stop was overkill and I was pushing exposures of between 3 to 4 minutes.
The first view point is spectacular. A tall seasonal waterfall feeds into the creek just below the main falls. The larger waterfalls are little harder to see and a clean sightline is very challenging, especially at this time of year. I was able to work my way carefully along the edge of the main pool a little further up, but even so, the view was partially obscured. A higher vantage point gives a good overall view of the main waterfall, but trees make a good photograph impossible.
This is usually the place where I turn around. The trail continues up and over, but it gets increasingly steep and challenging (especially if you’re uncomfortable with heights like I am). I decided to perservere and made my way to the base of the main falls.
It’s hard to get an impression of the size of the main drop from the photograph above, and even harder to get a good vantage point. The main channel has an impressive flow of water right now but it is mostly hidden behind a large rock outcrop.
Downstream, the views are better as the water of the creek rushes around large boulders before shooting to the left in front of the first view point.
Even in winter, Rosewall Creek Provincial Park is worth a look. The forest has a dark moody feel and the creek roars with the season. The trail is a little rough in places—early winter storms have brought down trees and high water flow has washed out the trail in places. Woody debris covers the trail in the low areas next to the water. If you’re prepared for the challenge, the falls are definitely a suitable reward for your effort!