Smith and Bybee Wetlands Natural Area

The park covers about 2000 acres, making it the 2nd largest urban freshwater wetlands in the nation. Nestled between the Columbia Slough and the Columbia River in North Portland, the lakes historically fall within the normal floodplain of the Columbia River. Development of the area for port terminals, warehouses, and commercial areas led to the creation of levees to prevent flooding and to control the path of the Columbia, this changed the hydrology of the wetland area. In 2003, to help restore the wetlands, Ducks Unlimited installed a water-control structure to the north of Bybee Lake. Through winter and spring the control structure is closed to retain as much water as possible, improving the habitat for a wide variety of wildlife including beavers, Bald Eagles, Western Painted Turtles and young salmon. Mid year after the salmon have migrated to the ocean, the structure is opened. Until it is closed again next winter, water from the Columbia Slough, which is affected by the tides, flows into and out of the lake.

The video was made completely on the iPhone. A Pelican 1020 Micro Case was modified slightly to house the iPhone and Mophie Juice Pack. With the use of some ball bungees and carabiners it was secured to the webbing on the kayak deck and positioned for the "bow shot." The whole sequence was shot continuously and only after did I notice the phone was positioned "centered" in the case which allowed one of the seams to show at the right hand side of the images. Better placement and the addition of another layer of Pick-N-Pluck foam behind took care of this. Overall the images were shot at a low resolution, only 640x480, so the stills that were later "pulled" didn't lend themselves for zooming in on to see the detail very well.

A leisurely 7 miles of paddling over the course of about 3 hours, taking one picture every 5 seconds resulted in over 2000 images in the iTimeLapse Pro app. Weeding out some frames here and there and compiling it at a rate of 10fps the video was saved and opened up in ReelDirector. Quite a bit of splicing and trimming was done and still images were added for momentary pauses to reflect detail of the subject, fellow paddlers, bird blind, beaver lodge, Bald Eagles nest, etc. The audio track was from a "freebie" CD from Kink FM highlighting local artists. I was cleaning the truck the other day and bumped the player and heard the song and it stuck in my head. The lyrics seemed to go along with the nice sunshine day and being out in the "Fresh Air."

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