Sunset Rays Over Bodie

Equipment Info
24mm / f/16 / 1/125 sec. / ISO 200
Nearest Area
Bodie State Historic Park
Brief Directions

Bodie is about 13 miles up Bodie Road from Highway 395 in the Eastern Sierra, southeast of the town of Bridgeport.


Afternoon thunderstorms create the best conditions in Bodie! This one was a real gully-washer, leaving deep puddles all over town. Fortunately afternoon convection shuts down when the sun sets, and any remaining clouds tend to drift away while they also disperse, so we get perfectly clear skies at night, in spite of a little smoke (that is actually helping the visibility of the sun rays).

We couldn't notice the smoke in daylight after the big rain, but the light of the setting sun filtering through the remaining clouds and peaks of the Bodie Hills cast beams of golden light over the town.

I stuck around to shoot in the area on the night after the workshop, but without rain, there was a lot more smoke in the air. I pulled the plug on the night shoot, and headed home to get some much-needed sleep. With reports of new fires across the West (and record drought in progress and record year-to-date acres already burned), it seems that the 2022 fire season is well underway and set to be a bad one.

A few fires are normal, but the air quality was so bad and unhealthy last year, we didn't plan any workshops from mid-July through September. We'll spend more time in Death Valley December through April instead.

Date Added
August 7, 2021
Date Taken
July 12, 2021