Nature + Nurture
View the winners, honorable mentions, and finalists from Friends' fifth annual photo contest
Detail from December sunrise at Catherine Creek by Cate Hotchkiss, Grand Prize winner of Friends' Nature + Nurture photo contest.

Friends of the Columbia Gorge presents the winners, honorable mentions, and finalists of our fifth annual photo contest.

The Columbia Gorge is a wondrous sight for the eye to behold. It's one of the best nature photography spots in the continental United States, but with this spectacular nature in our region comes the need to responsibly steward and nurture it.

For Friends' fifth annual photo contest, Nature + Nurture, we were looking for photos that not only capture the Columbia Gorge's beauty and natural wonder, but the connection between nature and the cultures and communities that make the Gorge such a vibrant place to visit and live. And you, shutterbugs of the Gorge, delivered a bounty of imagery that will help comfort and sustain us all while the current pandemic forces us off the trails and the scenic viewpoints for the good of our collective health, and the health of the Gorge itself.

Special thanks to photo contest sponsor Pro Photo Supply, and to our judges: Debbie Asakawa, Paloma Ayala, and Vince Ready.

568 entries were received, the most ever for the contest, and our judges had a difficult job picking just a few winners and honorable mentions. Congratulations to the following photographers:
  • Grand Prize winner: Cate Hotchkiss of Hood River, OR, for her photo December Sunrise at Catherine Creek
  • Category winners: Hailey Betts (co-winner), Ryan Betts (co-winner), Tara Lemezis, John Eric Lutz, Kristen McAlpine, Matthew Smith, Tula Top (two categories)
  • Honorable mentions: Tim Archer, Lois Bancroft, Elizabeth Betts, Bill Kirkland, Trevor Leahy, Daniel Rappaport (three mentions), Matthew Smith (two mentions)

Grand Prize Winner, Category Winners and Honorable Mentions Gallery


Finalists Gallery

Preliminary judging of the Nature + Nurture photo contest was performed by Friends of the Columbia Gorge staff. Of the 568 photos entered in the contest, approximately 75 reached the final round of judging, performed by an outside panel of three seasoned photographers (two professional, one amateur) with experience in conservation advocacy. While the photos below were not selected as winners or honorable mentions, they are distinguished by their finalist status and are eminently worthy of showcase.