The waterfall in the photo is Brushy Grotto Falls located in the Ozark National Forest, Arkansas, not to be mistaken for the Grotto Falls in Tennessee. To get here I woke up at 3 AM and drove south from Missouri to the Ozark National Forest in Arkansas. I wanted to catch the early morning light at the waterfall as I often do.
This waterfall is located in a huge grotto tucked away in a drainage coming of the high hills of the forest. I pulled onto an old jeep road that goes into a wooded area and met a giant tree that had fallen across the trail. So I parked there and began my hike down into this steep drainage. I reached the bottom and followed the drainage back up until I was at this waterfall, Brushy Grotto Falls.
As the sun began to rise and give light to this area, I started working my way around the base of the pool setting up compositions I wanted to shoot. As I was shooting, I began to see some light hit the grotto wall so I climbed up to investigate. The sun was just starting to crest the hilltop directly behind the waterfall, so I set up this shot getting the sunburst on the hilltop. It was a great way to bring in the first sunrise on the first day of spring 2021. This waterfall like many others in the Ozark National Forest are wet weather waterfalls and the best time to capture them is in the spring or fall when the rainy weather moves in.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor