Here’s a different look at Harpers Ferry. This time round I hiked up Loudon Heights rather than Maryland Heights.
While the walk up Maryland Heights is pretty much straight up (well round and round up I suppose) Loudon Heights is a bit more spread out. First you go up, then you walk along the spine of the mountain for a way.
At the end of the trail you get this view which is definitely worthwhile.
Next time I go up there I need to try out my telephoto lens and get some closer shots of Harpers Ferry itself.
Okay well technically it’s just regular grass but work with me here. It’s also actually a Civil War site, but again, let’s not be picky.
This panorama is at Harper’s Ferry National Historical Park, but it’s no at the bit everyone goes to. This is the Murphy-Chambers Farm.
While not nearly as visited as the primary site, it does make an excellent walking area with 1-3 miles of mostly flat ground (there are a few ravines if you choose to take them).
Amongst other things here you can see the footprint of the John Brown Fort and a gorgeous vista of the Shenandoah River.
There are also some earthworks since this is where Confederate General A.P. Hill performed his flanking maneuver on the Union forces.
While I like the scale of this image, I did make a basic error in composition which is that I left the horizon close to the middle of the image. I should have either shown less sky and more grass or more sky and less grass.
In my defense it is much harder to compose those elements when taking a series of portrait orientation images to stitch into a landscape panorama.
On the Maryland side of the Potomac you can walk from Harpers Ferry all the way up to Shepherdstown or further courtesy of the C&O Canal. On the West Virginia side things are a little more limited. But you can walk along the river a way. Which is what I did here, walking until I reached an old rubble dam usually refered to as Dam # 3 (but originally apparently called the Armory Dam).
As you can see it makes for an impressive panoramic view of the river.
The Appalachian trail runs through Harpers Ferry and crosses the Shenandoah River via a pedestrian section of the road bridge.
It’s not a particularly pleasant walk what with the cars and trucks speeding by. But they have put up a barrier in between so you don’t feel like you’re about to be crushed the whole time.
All of which is a very long winded way of explaining that this shot was taken from that bridge looking down on a very foggy Shenandoah. Oh and I can technically claim to have walked on the Appalachian trail.
I played around with the processing on this one again to get the painted look. I particularly like what it does to the water, giving it a very silvery effect.
This is another spot that I photograph on a regular basis. This is where the Shenandoah (on the right) and The Potomac (on the left) meet and the Potomac then heads through the Blue Ridge Mountains and on towards DC.
It’s also essentially where three states meet with Maryland on the left across and Virginia on the right, while I am standing in West Virginia.
Plus… it’s pretty.
This panorama is stitched together from about a half dozen images taken in portrait orientation. The same shot could basically have been achieved using about three landscape photos but I’ve switched to using portrait for the simple reason that it gives you a much higher starting resolution to edit from. And while I always scale the images down, doing the clean up and filtering at the highest resolution possible makes for a better final image.
Well I did say that I keep coming back to this spot.
Yes, it’s time for another panorama from the Harper’s Ferry Overlook on Maryland Heights. This time I’m looking up the Potomac with Harper’s Ferry off to the left.
I’m almost convinced that it’s actually impossible to take a bad photo from this spot.
Last week’s rainstorms created flash floods all over the region and that water eventually poured into both the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers.
And since both those rivers meet at Harpers Ferry, this is what it looked like early Saturday morning.