For the full story, please read my blog post on "Matthiessen" at:

www.lukestrothman.com/matthiessenstatepark

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Yesterday morning before I left for work I saw the forecast and saw it was supposed to be a beautiful 72 degrees with slight overcast and a chance of rain. This would be the perfect opportunity for a “lower dells” shot at Matthiessen State Park, mainly because of the sky not being too overexposed to mix in with the lower canyon area. I left work right around 3:30pm to head to the park. I arrived and ventured on my way to the lower dells, I was completely skipping the main waterfall where most people go when they venture out to Matthiessen.

After following the trillion stairs down the paths and scaling cliffs to get to lower dells, I finally was close and I noticed a barricade on the last set of stairs that led to where I needed to be. I have gone way too far to turn back and avoid the barricade. I jumped the blockage and continued on my way to what I had originally come for. Now just a few hundred yards from the base of the canyon where the waterfall resides, I have one more bridge to cross over which is above the deepest mud imaginable. (keep in mind I am here right after a ton of rain Illinois had and the lower dells were previously flooded for quite some time) That being said I walk towards the bridge and notice it is completely tipped over, and has another sign reading “trail closed” of course right? Well I turn into Cliffhanger and scale the tipped over bridge carefully to get to the other side.

Finally, I make it to the base of the canyon, and am now staring at the falls. The light, the color, the atmosphere is all PERFECT! I was absolutely thrilled to have no one down by me to get in the way of the shot. Now if I only had not forgotten my memory card! (kidding!) After a long hike and some sketchy trail following, I made it and got an excellent opportunity at this photograph. Very excited with this shot and hope everyone else enjoys it as well. Thanks for reading!

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