Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

New Zealand: Rainbow Falls

with 16 comments

A year ago today we visited Rainbow Falls outside the town of Kerikeri in New Zealand’s Northland. The falls were welcome, coming as they did so early in the trip. That said, we saw more impressive ones later, especially on the South Island.

I’d been away from New Zealand’s giant ferns for 23 months, so the leaf of a large fern adjacent to Rainbow Falls, shown below, appealed to me at least as much as the waterfall and provided a chance for a geometric abstraction.

© 2018 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

February 8, 2018 at 4:52 AM

16 Responses

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  1. I was surprised to see Rainbow Falls without an obvious rainbow, but I like what I do see: water that seems to be beads of liquid silver pouring down.

    To the right and left of the central falls, it looks as though there are long strands of hanging plant life mixed in with the falling water, adding to the sense of movement. I laughed at the vine (or whatever) in the lower half of the photo on the far right. I can hear it and its friends singing, “We shall not, we shall not be smoothed…”

    shoreacres

    February 8, 2018 at 8:43 AM

    • I clicked before adding that the fern is as interesting for its imperfections as for its symmetry. There are a lot of stories in those missing, bent, or browned leaflets.

      shoreacres

      February 8, 2018 at 8:45 AM

      • The statistician will point out that with such a large number of leaflets, inevitably at least a few will be deformed in shape or color.

        Steve Schwartzman

        February 8, 2018 at 9:22 AM

    • It hadn’t been raining as much as usual when we arrived in New Zealand. Online photos of Rainbow Falls show more water coming over the cliff than we saw. I expect greater flows produce the rainbows that gave the place its the name. None of the pictures I took, including the ones that include the pool at the bottom of the waterfall, show even a faint rainbow.

      I like that wiggly vine, too. Come to think of it, it’s similar to some of the rattan vines I’ve seen hanging from trees in the woods of Austin.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 8, 2018 at 9:21 AM

  2. Beautiful falls!

    montucky

    February 8, 2018 at 9:27 AM

    • I’ll bet you have many like that in Montana. We got spoiled last year from all the ones in New Zealand and the Rockies.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 8, 2018 at 9:52 AM

  3. I can not remember the ferns that originated there. I can remember someone sending us some rare ferns for the arboretum, but some of the popular ferns are from there too, and of course, from Australia and Tasmania.

    tonytomeo

    February 8, 2018 at 11:02 PM

    • New Zealand has so many kinds of ferns, and fortunately they keep reasserting themselves even after two centuries of ranching and farming. Most impressive to foreigners are the tree ferns. I’ll have a picture of one coming up in about a week.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 8, 2018 at 11:14 PM

      • Yes, they are distinct from the Tasmanian or Australian tree ferns. We got something known as a king fern, but I do not know what it is.

        tonytomeo

        February 8, 2018 at 11:19 PM

  4. The giant ferns are not in the new area where I live, and I miss seeing them… perhaps tucked away in deep pockets of green and immersed in moist settings, they’re hiding and waiting to be discovered here! I too would have been distracted by the ferns!

    Playamart - Zeebra Designs

    February 9, 2018 at 8:33 PM

    • It was from you that I learned about tree ferns in Ecuador. I’m sorry they’re not apparent in your new area; I do hope you’ll flush some out. They were in so many places in New Zealand, it seemed we were hardly ever out of sight of at least a few.

      Steve Schwartzman

      February 9, 2018 at 11:36 PM

  5. The fern looks just plain beautiful!

    Pina Marek

    August 4, 2018 at 11:57 AM


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