Guest post by Linda I’Anson. Linda’s avid photography interests include street photography, landscapes and travel photography.
My Yosemite Visit
Every time I’m in the Fresno area I make Yosemite a mandatory stop before going home. I used to hate this place. I thought it was overrated and was so sick of hearing about Ansel Adams this Ansel Adams that.
Coming to Yosemite in the winter changed my mind. Freshly fallen snow on the trees and mountains is breathtakingly beautiful. The crowds are gone and the wildlife are plentiful, even near the roads.
Yosemite is a two hour drive east from Fresno. You take Route 41 for the first hour to the park entrance. Then another hour to get to the meat and potatoes of the park. When you come out from the park’s tunnel you are struck in the face with the most grand awesome landscape in the world.
I have been coming to Yosemite 4-5 times a year now. Typically, the two parking lots for Tunnel View are full. This last weekend there were about 3 cars in the parking lot. And when I left the Park, zero! Unfortunately, this winter has been particularly warm and dry. I was hoping to get a shot of tufts of grass in the snow and the the stream iced over.
The easiest thing to do is park the car along the north or south roads, walk off into the woods, and you will find heaps of photographic opportunities. Every time I go, I find something new. I won’t go hiking in the mountains unless my husband joins me (to carry all my gear).
I barely made it for sunset at Valley View. When I arrived, a Japanese photography workshop was there. Thankfully, they didn’t go to my favorite tripod spot, to the right, at the base of a fallen tree trunk. But quite a few in the group were smoking and I had to yell at them in my best Japanese. SMOKING IN YOSEMITE???? Anyway, the sunset was brilliant. The sun hit the face of El Capitan in a gorgeous orange glow. Another photographer showed up afterwards and I told him he missed out on the most glorious sunset. I then showed him what I shot. Lesson learned the hard way, show up on time! My husband is laughing at me right now, as he reads this because I’m not a morning person and hate waking up for sunrise shots. He is always chastising me for not being a “true” photographer and calls me the “lazy faux-tographer”.
One the the things I forgot to throw in my bag before I left was my grad ND filter, so essential when you are taking sunrise or sunset shots. I made due with bracketing and using NIK HDR Efex Pro to combine the photos. I’m happy with the results.
On my way out of the park I stopped by Tunnel View (again). There was the pinkest alpine-glow I’ve ever seen. After shooting that, I took some photos of the fiery red skyline on the west side of the park.
It took me 7 hours to get home because of the construction on the 405, but it was well worth the effort.
You can find out more about Linda and check out her portfolio at her website at http://www.iansonphotography.com.