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Final Light, Sentinel Dome, Yosemite

Posted by
Gary Hart (California, United States) on 22 May 2009 in Landscape & Rural and Portfolio.

This afternoon I'm off to Yosemite with a small group--tonight it'll be sunset atop Sentinel Dome, then we'll hang out and shoot star trails before hiking back in the dark. Tomorrow morning it's up at four (!) to photograph a crescent moon rising above Half Dome in the pre-dawn sky.

Today's image I took a couple of years ago from Sentinel Dome. Sentinel Dome may just be my favorite place to photograph in Yosemite. It's a short (one mile), fairly easy hike that I can do in my sleep (and probably have). From the top of Sentinel Dome you get a 360 degree view that includes El Capitan, Yosemite Falls, and Half Dome (among many others).

At 8,000 feet, Sentinel Dome's elevation above the surrounding terrain and relatively easy access make it one of Yosemite's best sunrise locations. Unlike Yosemite Valley, which doesn't get direct morning light until well after sunrise, Sentinel Dome gets rich, warm extremely low angle light. Of course it's also a great place for sunset, for all the same reasons.

Another feature I love about Sentinel Dome is the small pools that form after a rain. In today's image an afternoon thunderstorm had filled the pools and departed shortly before my arrival. I positioned myself behind the pools and found this tree to line up with the setting sun. Must to my good fortune, a thick haze in the San Joaquin valley to the west gave the sun and surrounding sky an orange hue.

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Thanks for visiting. Even if I don't respond, your comments are always read and appreciated.

Didier DE ZAN from somewhere, France

Very beautiful sunset

22 May 2009 5:09am

Onlymehdi from Wayne, United States

Very Beautiful sunset, composition

22 May 2009 1:15pm

Tracy from La Selva Beach, United States

I've never been to Sentinel Dome- Now I will have to go! This has such a calming serene feeling to it. Beautiful.

22 May 2009 1:58pm

chrissy from uk, United Kingdom

Wow absolutely beautiful sunset

22 May 2009 2:44pm

Stefan from Thiersee, Austria

Wow, really beautiful image!

23 May 2009 3:11am

abhilash from new york, United States

great shot, gary! the composition and the mood you've captured is great. only critique i have is the red color around the sun seems to be a bit blown out.

24 May 2009 2:38am

Jordi Roy from Barcelona / Tremp, Spain

No words for this photos!!!

28 May 2009 9:50am

enoxisureka from London, United Kingdom

Beautiful shot. Great moment and frame that you've captured.

28 May 2009 8:51pm

Food from Las Cruces, NM, United States

This is an amazing shot! The sillouette of the tre is beautiful.

10 Jun 2009 1:54pm