Sun Rays on Yosemite Valley Morning Fog

Equipment Info
Canon EOS 6D
70mm / f/8 / 1/160 sec. / ISO 200
Nearest Area
Yosemite National Park
Yosemite Village
Brief Directions

The Tunnel View viewpoint is at the west end of Yosemite Valley, a short distance south on Highway 41 from the Bridalveil Fall parking lot.


The dynamic range of the scene was too great for one exposure, so the sun ray image above was created from five bracketed exposures, adjusted in Adobe Lightroom and combined in PhotomatixPro HDR software.


On this sunrise at Yosemite's iconic Tunnel View overlook, it had rained the day before, but the skies were forecast to clear up overnight, so I figured that it would cool down enough to have the water vapor condense as a ground fog. When we arrive the next morning, it was just thick enough to reach the tree tops, creating some nice photographic opportunities.

There had been several dozen people at this viewpoint minutes before the sun rays appeared, but once the sun cleared the mountains, nearly everyone decided to go get breakfast. Someone in my workshop asked about that, but I said “Let’s give it another five minutes.” Sure enough, when the sun closed the gap in the clouds and started shining down between them, light rays started moving around the Valley.

Date Added
November 22, 2017
Date Taken
January 1, 1970
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