Quiet Walk on the Lakeside
After beginning my trek through Jiuzhai Valley amid the crowds of people clambering for a view of one of the so-called “scenic sites”, I decided to take a hike down one of the wooden trails on the opposite side of the park. The section of Jiuzhai Valley that I was in consists of a chain of lakes flanked on both sides by trails. Naturally, most of the (lazy) tourists choose to walk along the west side where the bus routes run, making the east path serene and quiet.
This photo was taken as I crossed over Tiger Lake and began walking south along Rhinoceros Lake. I’ve heard lots of complaints about the wooden walkways: that they distract from the view, that they damage the environment, that they take away from the “natural” feel of the park. Personally, I would much rather not have the walkways, but it’s hard to ignore the fact that without them, eager tourists would be clambering over every inch of the landscape looking for the best places to pose for their family portraits. The walkways also add a nice feel to photographs like this one.
Later on, I came upon one of the signature sights of Jiuzhai Valley: a lattice of fallen trees lining the bottom of the lake. The tree trunks look strange, though, being bloated from the water and corrugated by the effects of wind and sand. The entire lake bottom is lined with them, scattered every which way. It almost makes me wonder whether there used to be a forest here, and how the trunks could have survived this long without being broken apart or washed away.
For some reason, the trunks sticking out of the water also remind me of Chinese breadsticks. :)
This photo is also one of the first where I got a really good reflection off of the water. Getting a good water reflection shot depends on a lot of things: strong sunlight, the clarity of the water, the angle of the shot, and most importantly, a nice, smooth lake surface with no wind. For this photo, all of those things came together (luckily), so I was able to capture the colors coming off of the water.
Finally, purple water. This photo has not been altered in any way except minor sharpening in Photoshop; the colors are preserved exactly as they were originally captured.
I’m not exactly sure what’s going on here. I was standing in a shade of a large mountain, and when I looked down, the water was purple. It’s probably some trick of the light or some such thing; it might also be something in the water. I don’t know.
But what I do know is that it’s very, very cool. :)
Title photo shot with Canon EOS Rebel T3 @ 18mm, 1/100s, f/10, ISO 100.