I’ve been holding this image for a long time. Since March of 2013 when I got to experience the magic that is snowfall in Yosemite Valley. In the frenzy that was that morning (which can be read about more in my other image “Pencil To Paper“) I recalled this spot which I had noticed on previous trips. Though back then the falls werent flowing nearly as much (if at all….something about a on-going drought). This time around a different story. As the snow was pounding down I set up the shot and luckily had my small umbrella hidden in my camera bag to protect the camera (not me) from the big, heavy flakes. Spending the better part of an hour at this location experimenting with different ways of capturing the scene as it changed. In the end this particular exposure really managed to translate the experience of that morning in the Valley 🙂
“Pencil To Paper” (unreleased)
Back in March ’13 I had the incredible opportunity of being near Yosemite National Park when the forecast called for an incoming storm. Knowing that 1) I dont live anywhere near Yosemite and 2) storms/snow arent too common, I knew I only had one choice. Drive my rental Mustang (yea free upgrade) in to the valley floor and sleep in it overnight. As far as sleeping goes in cars…I’ve had better…
Waking up the next morning I was stoked. BIG fluffy flakes DUMPING down. The great white awesomeness that is snow. Now, two more things ran through my head 1) where the hell am I supposed to shoot?! and 2) why the f@#$ did I get a Mustang. Slapping myself awake I donned my winter clothes that I had packed and started driving around the valley scoping where I might want to go. Having been there before I had a cursory knowledge but still not much of a clue. I do know that I love trees. And I love solo trees. So when I remembered this big Oak which I spotted the summer before that popped back in to my mind.
Walking in to the field I was gitty. I’m a ski bum. Snow is my favorite ever. (Yes I see the irony of living in Hawai’i). But since becoming a ‘photographer’ I have yet to have such conditions. Luckily I had my small fold up umbrella with me and was able to hold that over the camera to protect it. Snow is such a unique precipitation. Because it’s the only one that could be coming down SO hard…and yet be completely silent. That blissful silence…
Another trip to California in the books…and this one did not dissapoint 🙂 While I photographed a few places, the Shasta area was my target again. And after the recent storms, had completely transformed to it’s winter coat. Amazing to see. Of course, it was MUCH colder than the last time I visited in August which kept me thinking if I had brought the right clothes for the job. Admittedly I am a winter person. My body runs warm. I love playing in the snow and skiing. The cold air in the nose. Fresh. Tingling. The quite. It’s just a special time of year. How and why I ended up in a tropical paradise…I can only say that the universe knows better than I do 🙂
While there were LOTS of incredible photos taken I offer you up the story of a special sunrise I was able to capture…please enjoy 🙂
445am alarm at hotel.
Get out to car…thick frost already over everything…it’s cold alright. Drive about 30min up to the trailhead on a frost covered road. Arriving in the parking lot there’s snow…in fact there’s a nice ground cover over the entire landscape. And it’s cold. Standing there in the dark I wonder what the hell am I doing up here? It’s completely dark, approx 25F and this hike will be completely in the snow. And there is wildlife out there…where…I have no idea, but that always enters the back of my mind. Well, this is what I’m here for. I just hope I stay warm as I hike up to 6k feet.
There’s something quite remarkable about hiking in the dark. Our surroundings merely include what our headlight illuminates, leaving the reset of the world a mystery. Then of course there are the forest noises. Which, thanks to the snow, are fairly minimal. I do love winter, a lot. No silence quite like it.
Having attempted this trail in August (and getting redirected lets call it) I was happy to follow the footprints of others that had already made the snowy trek. And to my surprise I was both warm and making great time. So much in fact that I arrived at the lake, (which was of course frozen over, so no reflections), before sunrise.
An even better surprise, the high cirrus glowing absolutely radiantly directly behind Mt. Shasta. Standing up on the ridge alone taking in the light and experience it makes that parking-lot-decision all worth while 🙂
To see more images from this incredible sunrise and some truly remarkable sunset (with reflection!) photographs please contact any aFeinberg Gallery or email us for more info 🙂