photography waterfall slow shutter speed

No Waterfall? Create Your Own!

Many many years ago when D and I were first married we lived in Manhattan Kansas. We were college age then and one of the popular places for college kids to hang out was a place called Pillsbury Crossing. We spent a day or two there wading in the water and even took a picnic once or twice. It’s still a very popular place with college kids today.

Pillsbury Crossing is  a few miles east of Manhattan. It is a low water river crossing where a natural rock bridge of sorts creates a way for vehicles to cross the river. You can drive right across through a few inches of running water; or if you were so inclined you could even walk across. Just a few feet away from this crossing is a small waterfall called Deep Creek Waterfall.

I remember, way back all those years ago, how much water rushed over those little falls. It really made a  heck of a noise too! Not so much right now though. Recently I got the chance to go back there with #7 and a her friend TG. The water levels out there, as they are in much of the state right now, were really low. In fact there was barely any water trickling over the rocks.

pillsbury crossing manhattan kansas
1/15 sec – f/16 – ISO 200 – 24mm – VND filter attached


When #7 and TG said “let’s go to Pillsbury Crossing” the first thing that came to my mind was “waterfall! I can practice blurring motion with a nice slow shutter speed.” “I’m going to get that soft flowing water effect.”

Kind of hard to do when there’s no waterfall to speak of.

Then somehow TG came up with an idea on how to create our own little waterfall.

She got in her shiny new Jeep Grand Cherokee and drove out onto that rock bridge. She drove around in a nice big arch and caused a wake just big enough to stir up the water and push some over the falls.

1/6 sec – f/22 – ISO 200 – 24mm – VND filter attached


Finally a chance to test out those slow shutter speeds.

photography slow shutter speeds
.3 sec – f/18 – ISO 200 – 98mm – VND filter attached
photography waterfall slow shutter speed
1 sec – f/22 – ISO 200 – 55mm – VND filter attached


Ok, not all experiments go as planned but at least I came away with a couple of fun images. I’m definitely going to have to try this again soon!

Click on either of  the  two waterfall images above to see a larger view, order prints, or download photos.


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