Snow Trillium

Snow Trillium Telephoto

The weather finally broke into the 50s today. The Snow Trillium has responded exuberantly after a long, long holding period. Tonight the temperatures are dipping into the 20s once more. But the snow trillium will be fine; many spring ephemerals, especially the early risers, have a built-in antifreeze quality to their tissues. These trillium have already survived three weeks of freezing nights.


I chose a telephoto lens today. Telephoto may seem like an odd choice for wildflower photography. It comes in handy when flowers are not close to the trail or in otherwise inaccessible locations. One risk of the zeal to observe and photograph wildflowers is that it tempts one to get off the trail to inadvertently damage the habitat. A telephoto helps keep you honest, and gives you greater reach. For similar reasons I often take binoculars along when observing wildflowers. Today the need for telephoto was even more practical. This particular patch of snow trillium is among a tangle of multi-flora rose. Off-trail just was not an option! I tried to capture the distance and inaccessibility in several of the photographs. The others are more traditional shots, albeit ones that were still unavailable to a shorter lens due to the circumstances.

The camera was a Nikon D90. The lens was the Nikon 70-300mm AF-S ED VR Nikkor, a very affordable telephoto with the very-useful-for-telephoto vibration reduction. I was at 300mm most of the time here, which of course is inviting camera shake. I have tried several low-end Nikon telephotos, which I profile in this blog post. All but one were quite serviceable, but I’ve moved on to VR since that post was made. Post-processing in Aperture was limited to some cropping and minor adjustments.