I was winter camping in Yosemite Valley. After a lovely snooze on a bed of snow, thermarests, and cozy blankets, I got up early on the morning of December 29th, 2012 to catch the sunrise. I drove to El Capitan meadow to assess the light and it looked like the most interesting display would be happening to the east. Knowing the layout of the park, I decided that Gates of the Valley would be a perfect place to watch the sunrise. Arriving at the Gates, I noticed a few other photographers already set up. Not wanting to stand right next to anyone and noticing these fantastic tufts of snow-covered grass in the Merced, I waded out into the river to shoot. The sunrise started off blandly and I thought it was going to be a bust, but after 30 minutes of patient waiting the clouds broke up enough to let these lovely salmon and lavender splashes of light in. What a way to start the day!