Best of 2013

December 30, 2013  •  4 Comments

This year I was lucky enough to do a lot of traveling, both near and far. I went to Kauai for the first time and marveled at the beauty of the Na Pali Coast. I spent my first spring enjoying the green explosion in the Columbia River Gorge. Over the summer I spent 2 weeks exploring the wildflower meadows of Mt. Rainier and the rugged beauty of Glacier National Park. This fall I traveled through the red rock wonders of Nevada, Arizona and Utah on another 2 week trip. These travels were filled with fantastic experiences, beautiful light and in many instances tired eyes and frozen fingers. The reason that I enjoy traveling is for the experiences, but coming home with a great photograph is even more rewarding. I have gathered a collection of my favorite 12 images from this year which you will find below. Thanks for looking and please enjoy.    

Wild Solitude: 

After a number of attempts, I made it to this amazing location in the Columbia River Gorge. I thought that the incoming fog provided an amazing beauty to the scene. 

Nature's SymphonyNature's Symphony

Nature's Symphony:

This may well be my favorite waterfall in the gorge. Once you are at river level the waterfall surrounds you and the noise is deafening. I was lucky enough to spend a couple of hours down here in solitude during peak spring greens. 

Frozen MomentsFrozen Moments

Frozen Moments:

I went to Mt. Rainier NP with the intention of photographing fields of wildflowers, but my favorite image of the trip ended up being this amazing snow cave. This was my first time seeing and being inside a snow cave and it was truly spectacular! 


Twilight Cascade:

After a number of less than epic days in Glacier NP my final evening turned out to be the best of the entire trip. I was treated to an amazing light show that included a vibrant sunset as well as a rainbow. However, my favorite image of the evening came on my way back to the car when I stumbled upon this great cascade. A few minutes later the cloud that had been sitting on Mt. Reynolds began to swirl upward creating this magical scene. 

Puddle JumpingPuddle Jumping

Puddle Jumping:

Over Thanksgiving I took a quick 2 day trip to San Diego and with only 1 chance to photograph this location I was treated to one of the best sunsets that I saw this year. This image was actually taken after the height of the sunset color, but I like the softer glow that it provided. 

Spirit TreeSpirit Tree

Spirit Tree:

Last year I managed to miss the peak of the fall color in the Japanese Garden in Portland and by the time I arrived most of the leaves had fallen. This year I timed it just about right.

Turbulent SerenityTurbulent Serenity

Morning Wonder:

After spending the night in the Valley of Fire battling the wind and trying to keep my tent from flying off, I headed out for sunrise. I was pelted by sand and had to wait to shoot between gusts of wind to get a clean shot. I was ecstatic to be rewarded for my effort.  

Enter The SubwayEnter The Subway

Enter The Subway:

There is nothing too original about this image, but how can you photograph the subway and not have it in your top images of the year? It is simply a magical location whether it has been photographed to death or not!

Cottonwood AlcoveCottonwood Alcove

Cottonwood Alcove:

With so many photographers flocking to Zion every year it is difficult to find something that has not already been done. As far as I know this is an original composition which makes it all the more satisfying. 

Lady In RedLady In Red

Beauty In Red:

I waited until the light creeping into the canyon was just out of the frame which allowed me to get the strongest glow possible.

Zen's CreationZen's Creation

Zen's Creation:

When I traveled to Page in 2011 I was amazed by this section of canyon but did not have the photography know-how to render it the way I wanted. On the first day in the canyon this year I wasn't pleased with my composition, but the second day I found what I was looking for and was able to capture the full spectrum of color that Antelope Canyon has to offer. 

Light's SymphonyLight's Symphony  

Light's Symphony:

On my second trip into the Zion Narrows I was lucky enough to run into an excellent photographer named Ben Horne ( who was nice enough to take me to a number of spots during peak glow. This was one such location and probably my favorite from the narrows. 


Thanks for looking at my favorite photographs of this year. Please have a look at my other galleries (, as I have plenty of new work not included here. 

Thanks again,

Jordan Ek


Beautiful set buddy. Keep inspiring.
Really beautiful images, made me to forget about my breakfast and the mumbling stomach. :D
Really cool to see how you've developed your style and how patient you are to get a nice frame (thinking about the Japanese tree or the dozens of times in the Gorge).
Always a pleasure to dig though your photography and I really hope we can enjoy shooting together again someday!
Great pictures!!!!! Thanks for sharing
1.Steve Zamek(non-registered)
They're all spectacular images. What an amazing year you've had!
Gonna be tough to top this next year :)
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