Trusting in the Canon 5D Mk III: How Kay Brewer captured the wreck of the Peter Iredale
posted Friday, November 20, 2015 at 8:01 AM EDT
By IR Reader Kay Brewer
The Peter Iredale sailing vessel ran ashore October 1906, on the Oregon coast. It was abandoned near Fort Stevens. It had sailed from Santa Cruz, Mexico, bound for Portland, Oregon with 1,000 tons of ballast and a crew of 27, including two stowaways.
The voyage was pretty routine until Captain Lawrence sighted the Tillamook Rock Lighthouse and altered course to enter the mouth of the Columbia River in thick mist and a rising tide. Strong winds made the crew try to steer the ship away from shore, but a heavy northwest squall grounded the Peter Iredale on Clatsop Sands (now called Clatsop Spit), near Cannon Beach, Oregon. High seas and wind drove the ship ashore. Amazingly, no casualties occurred in the accident.
I used my Canon 5D Mark III DSLR, Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM Ultra Wide Angle Zoom Lens, Manfrotto tripod. Good thing with both the camera and L-series lens because they were put to the test with the wind, sand, salt water. (They survived admirably.) A sturdy tripod was required since the tide was coming in and I was constantly being harassed by knee-high waves trying to take me and my equipment out to sea. For the first time on that trip, I was happy to have that extra-heavy Manfrotto tripod which I’d cursed so many times in my travels. Generally I could stand holding my tripod while the water was coming up over my shoes.
I was doing long exposures with a 100-stop ND filter, or HDRs so it wasn’t a case of snapping a picture and dashing away from the waves. But finally, I got smart when a rogue wave came up about halfway up to my rear end. I was in the middle of a long exposure and didn’t want to grab my tripod and run. But as the wave receded and wanted me to go with it, or at least fall and wreck a lot of expensive equipment, I struggled out of the water, soaked, and called it quits. Good thing? Camera didn’t get wet. The tripod got a good hot shower when I got home to get all the salt out.
(Thanks so much from your friends here at IR, Kay!)
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