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Pomponio Creek Beach

Posted by
Stephen Phillips (San Francisco, United States) on 6 March 2010 in Plant & Nature and Portfolio.

near San Gregorio, California

Two factors here. The coastal hills behind me average more than 600 meters (2000 ft) and it had been raining hard until just a few minutes earlier.

That big log up ahead there in the stream - and it is big - was right where I am standing. My plan was to use it as part of the foreground. As I was setting the tripod the creek grew suddenly louder - the volume of water was rapidly increasing and I quickly moved back. I was in awe as that huge log suddenly started moving towards the sea. All the rich soil from the dense forest floor at the base of those hills is why the water is the color of chocolate.

Larger view - location:

[note]: Following the above link - should you go to the Google map link and select the 'hybrid' or 'satalite' view - you will see an aerial view during a dry period. The beach actually dams the creek, creating a small pond. Quite a contrast to today's post.

The light changed here by the minute as the sunlight danced between the passing clouds. More tomorrow...

© copyright 2018 by Stephen Phillips Photography / Oakland, California /
please respect these rights - do not copy or use these images without permission.

ordinaryimages from Kentucky Bluegrass, United States

Got the pulse moving did you! best...jerry

6 Mar 2010 7:36am

@ordinaryimages: You better know it, Jerry. I was fine with the quick rising water - I know this environment and this watershed. I knew what was causing the sudden gush and that there were no man-made dams that might have breached.

What got the ticker pounding was that the big log was nicely settled into its sandy berth. When the waters erupted the thing literally popped up and into those small rapids - bobbing wildly! It was quite a sight and really surprised me as I saw it through the wide lens.

lare from Finland

beautiful composition from erosion making you think about how nature forms it's faces all the time...perspective is super and camera angle optimum. On narrative level I see how the ground goes back to the early see, mother of all life on planet....

6 Mar 2010 9:09am

Susan from Fort Lauderdale, United States

I guess that's how flash floods happen, ey? Glad you still managed to get this gorgeous shot, while keeping yourself safe!!!!

6 Mar 2010 12:08pm

@Susan: Exactly how they happen, Susan. I wasn't in danger. You might enjoy glancing at my response to Jerry (ordinaryimages). Are you heading back to the blimp this weekend? One suggestion I'll make is to send a copy of the photograph (with watermark) along with a brief letter addressed to the CEO of Goodyear. A good executive secretary will know exactly who to forward it to. Experience has taught me that the top is not a bad place to start.

Evelyne Dubos from Le Mans, France

Very well composed and great use of depht.

6 Mar 2010 3:11pm

Ralph Jones from Detroit, United States

Brakhage water is always interesting to me, not only the color but the things that can survive in it and the fact that these streams change so frequently.

6 Mar 2010 3:44pm

Dimitrios, think positive. from ATHENS, Greece


6 Mar 2010 3:53pm

JJ from Jersey City, United States

The power of nature caught so well here pretty amazing how it picked up that huge log ad took it away, must have been quite exhilarating to see first hand

6 Mar 2010 4:06pm

Mirko Herzner from Mühlheim am Main, Germany

Even the change in light from yesterday's post is amazing. This one is so appealing. Wow!

6 Mar 2010 5:03pm

k@ from Paris, France

Love the frontier between sea & sand, superb !

6 Mar 2010 5:11pm

Curly from South Shields, United Kingdom

This is so much like a shot I took on our beach last week, where it appeared as though a new river had suddenly sprang up and carved a twelve feet wide gulf in the sands. It was almost as exciting as this shot here, except the water had came from a flooded car park behind me.

6 Mar 2010 7:30pm

Yonatan from Bronx, United States

Water is one of those things that I have a lot of respect for. I'm glad you were able to capture some shots of it's fury while staying dry and safe. I'm looking forward to seeing more.

6 Mar 2010 7:33pm

David from Detroit, United States

The swirling water really grabs the attention immediately.

6 Mar 2010 10:06pm

Betty from Phillipsburg, United States

That must have been quite an experience! Glad you know the area and are safe! Your comment enhances the photo! Nice shot.

6 Mar 2010 10:21pm

Scott F. Schilling from San Martin, United States

I am glad you did not wash away with the log! I like the low point of view in this image and you have captured a fantastic sky! It is nice to have very green hills this year and water!

7 Mar 2010 2:27am

MontereyJohn from Salinas, California, United States

That creeks up, I ruined a pair of duck boots there. Lovely image, I really like to comp and POV.

OK, I got the bloggie thingie integrated to the web site. Urah! Do drop by and leave a comment if you get a chance. Just click the usual MontereyJohn, I linked to the blog. Thnx, John

7 Mar 2010 4:01am

sherri from Little Rock, Arkansas, United States

Very strange shifting of the water. You had me baffled.

7 Mar 2010 4:27am

Karthik from Chennai, India

Quite an adventure eh? Love the texture of the sand

7 Mar 2010 2:50pm

Calusarus from St Sorlin en Valloire, France

very nice seascape.

8 Mar 2010 9:35pm