Jeffrey Byrnes Photographer Fashion + Portraits + Travel

Travel Photography: The Adirondacks

On the ride up Kris asked, "have you ever been this far west?" My response, no. I have traveled as far north as Quebec City, as far East as Paris and Italy, as far south as the Bahamas, but the west I am long over due to see. In February my wife and I will be visiting friends in the west and exploring parts of Oregon and Washington. I can not express how excited I am to see the pacific northwest. 

The Adiorndacks are splendid, to say the least. Kris has been traveling up there for years and knew his way around, for the most part. Lake George is a feat of nature carved out of the earth. Our cabin was situated on the Sacandaga river, which empties out into the Sacandaga lake. 

Sacandanga River, Northville NY

On the banks of the river we formed a stone circle that became our fire pit. The rushing sound of the fast moving water was the instrument to the vocals of the crackling fire that light up the night. Our laughs echoed into the night and traveled down stream. I imagine that the slow pace of life on the river is as much relaxing day in and day out as it was for our time there. 

River front cabin

Being in the Adirondacks in the off season meant that there was far less people than the warmer months, which is fine by me. We were able to travel from Northville to the Lake George area with ease. The narrow winding roads paved a way through forests that were filled with empty trees, tall pines, and empty vacation properties. It is clear that the tourism is the major source of revenue for the Lake George area. We were let down that we could not cruise the lake aboard one of the steam ships. When I heard about those, I was all for it. Sadly, the season had just come to a close and they were not operating. 

Lake George as seen from The Sagamore

The sun setting over Lake George, seen from The Sagamore



After some research we found Augers Falls about 15 miles up the Sacandanga River. We traveled north following the river into the town of Wells NY. A small, almost discrete sign pointed to a dirt lot off of RT 30 where we parked. Exiting my car I grabbed my camera bag and my tripod. I couldn't image the hike was going to be to long. The river danced from our left to our right as we crossed over a bridge where the east and west branches of the Sacandanga meet. As we maneuvered up the road the river was never far from our field of view, this was a key clue in determining of the hike was going to be a few minutes of an annoying amount of time. 

Kris sitting in a swath of fading sunlight. 

JT and Kris acting like Lois and Clark 

After about 5 minutes of walking through the trees, around some rocks, and twigs, a bag of dog crap someone was kind enough to toss off the trail, we could hear the water rushing over the rocks. It took us about another 5 before we came to head with a beautiful exhibition of rocks. The water was flowing heavily and I was in awe. There are some waterfalls in the world that you can not get next to, some large, some small, some are frighteningly big, while others are the right size. Augers Falls is approachable if you are an experience hiker and have the right pair of shoes. 

While I was photographing the waterfall, the sun kept dancing through the clouds. Out of nowhere a light mist began to rise from the base of the waterfall.

iPhone 6 photograph

Mounted to my tripod, my camera recorded the falls in 2-4 second exposures. The f-stop was cranked up to a whopping 22-32. The water was splashing off the rocks and ricocheting up and bouncing off the front element of the lens. I was very close to the falls, at times, too close. 

I made a very acute observation while standing at the very edge of the waterfall. There is a gigantic footprint carved out of the rock. It is in the shape of a large foot. If giants existed, this would be proof, or perhaps, this is an old world fossil print from a stone age sasquatch. I stood for a few minutes and watched the water pass over, swirl though, and exit the tip of the foot print. 

Augers Foot 

Life is short, have an adventure. Get out and see as much of this world as you can before it is either destroyed or before your time comes to an end. I am making travel a part of my lifestyle as well as a part of my career and photography. I am moving into 2016 with some new work on the horizon. I am gearing up for a big promo that is scheduled to launch in mid-December. Traveling is going to be a big part of the work that I am ushering my career into. Take my advice, travel, go to The Adirondacks, spend some time in the woods, get lost on the river, go to a waterfall or two, have a fire on the river, toss a few beers down, slow life down and relax, you will be happy that you did.