Along the park's Southside Drive, at the section of road where El Capitan is clearly visible, walk down to the Merced River to the spot where both the river and El Capitan can be framed to your liking.
It was late January and I was fortunate to have timed my arrival in Yosemite Valley with a heavy snowfall which blanketed the ground and clung to tree branches. It was late aftenoon when I trudged thru deep snow along the Merced River in search of the ideal spot to frame El Capitan with the flowing river in the foreground. Within a few minutes, the storm clouds opened a window thru which the late day sun cast a brief but dramatic band of warm light upon the face of El Capitan. I was fortunaate to be in just the right position with my tripod mounted camera to capture a few exposures before the clouds again obscured the setting sun.