Autumn Has Arrived

Autumn. What’s not to love? Crisp air, rustling leaves, apple cider, football and of course, beautiful foliage. I’ve always had a fondness for autumn and it might be my favorite time of year – I got back and forth between spring and fall. Right now, autumn is my favorite. Come April, I’ll probably reverse that decision. Perhaps I sound like a waffling politician, but I do my best to live in the moment.

As you know, I have a regular day job and only do photography when I can find the time. A weekend warrior if you will. Each year I save up as many vacation days possible so I can take some time in mid-to-late October to explore the mid Atlantic region’s colorful display. I’m currently planning some trips to Shenandoah, some parks in Maryland and maybe the highlands of West Virginia.

Last autumn my wife and I went on a road trip through North Carolina. We started in the center/east area of Chapel Hill, wound our way to Asheville and eventually made it to Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP). I had been to GSMNP a few times before and loved it, but my wife had never been. Her middle name is actually named after Laurel Falls, so that was on our must do list while there.

On our trip, my wife and I were driving along Roaring Fork and decided to blaze our own trail to a small waterfall we spied from our car. We were hiking around 8am over moss covered rocks and the humidity was overwhelming. After ‘man vs wildin’ it, as my wife called it, and sweating off 10 pounds, we arrived at the falls.


Roaring Fork Autumn Swirl

Roaring Fork Autumn Swirl, Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The stream cascaded over two small drops and was surrounded by beautifully green, moss covered stones. Mountain laurel could be found behind and to the sides of the cascades, which obviously didn’t yield any autumn color, so I focused on this leaf covered rock jut out and the leaves swirling in the river.

Be on the look out for the natural circular swirls of streams during autumn. If leaves aren’t already in the water swirling about, take a handful and throw them in. With a slower shutter speed, you can capture a nice autumn leaf swirl. I took several swirl photos at this location, some are elsewhere on this site.

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