Spruce Burl Trail is located on the Olympic Peninsula near Beach 1, just south of Kalaloch, Washington. This area is one of my favorite places to photograph in Washington because of its strange burl nodules growing in the trunks of many of the Sitka spruce trees. As you walk through the forest, you can’t help but find all kinds of farcical shapes the remind you of weird childhood fairytales.
Finding a decent composition in the chaos of the forest is actually quite difficult. I worked to find a visual anchor in the foreground and finally found this group of sword ferns mixed in the ground cover. I used a Nikon D800 and Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8 lens mounted on my Gitzo GT3541L Mountaineer 6X carbon fiber tripod. I framed up the fern in the foreground and bracketed just three shots for merging in Nik HDR Efex Pro 2.