Most people know that I am a "planner" - I seldom leave anything to chance. It's helps me in my job and it's hard to turn it off when I am not at work. So it wouldn't surprise anyone to know that I planned my latest trip to Ricketts Glen perfectly. You need cloudy weather for great waterfall photography, and last Friday was the perfect forecast - cloudy, slight chance of showers late in the day, no wind (can't have the leaves moving) and the thunderstorms were only supposed to form far south of the park.
I'm a bit of a worrier with lightening (I blame my mom) and I'm sometimes concerned about being on the trail, hours from the car and any shelter, when a storm comes. The showers arrived on schedule and unfortunately so did some thunder. I cowered under a rock overhang - I mean I stood defiantly under a rock overhang only so my camera gear would not get wet - and waited out the storm. It wasn't much of a storm. And when I calmed down a little I started looking around. And I saw this one leaf - at the very end of a branch - getting pelted by the rain shower. The background was made by the distant trees with different color leaves and I thought it might be one of the best images of the day.
The lesson... be open to whatever situation presents itself. Make the best of whatever you have. If I hadn't had to wait out the short storm under the rock overhang, I would never have seen this leaf or made this image.
Oh, and I learned one other lesson that day. Never eat Mexican food for dinner two nights in a row before an all day hike - not good!