I have been photographing Ruby Beach in the Olympic National park for a number of years. I first stopped at the beach on a drive down 101 after a visit to the Hoh Rainforest more than 10 years ago. It is well marked and a pretty easy hike. In fact, the walk to the beach is less than a 1/4 of a mile from the parking lot. It is also one of the most accessible beaches in the Olympic with sea stacks. The other locations do require a bit more of a hike, and even 2nd beach which is really easy to get to is closer to a mile.
I hiked this trail starting back with my little 35mm camera and have since shot it with every format possible from 8×10 to a holga to PS digital, camera phone and DSLR. Each time is a pretty different experience with the gear and the location. The constant tides and stream that feeds into Ruby are ever changing the rocks and drift wood. However, there is one constant with me and the Ruby there is never a sky around. I always get a marine layer no matter the time of year, if I am at Ruby at sunset there is nothing in the sky but gray low hanging clouds. Most of my friends won’t even go out with me anymore since they know what the weather will be like if I am going out there.
For this image from a trip in July with Ryan Turner, I used a big old stack of ND filters to give the ocean some time to build up some atmosphere and smokiness. The overall exposure is over 2mins. And the best part of that is given the bit of wind, amount of time and high tide moving in, I didn’t get my shoes wet for the first time in a long time. Maybe my luck is changing and the next time, I’ll get to play with the sky and some color.