Central California - May/June 2009

Yosemite National Park - Waterfalls

Pre-trip research showed that late spring was the best time to visit Yosemite NP. The snow melt from the high Sierras feeds the numerous waterfalls in the area. This was certainly true for my trip and the falls were flowing. But by late summer the falls are reduced to a trickle, or not flowing at all. 

While I saw at least a dozen different waterfalls during my travels, only a few were photogenic (at least at the times I visited them).

Bridal Vail Falls

Bridalveil Falls

A shot of the 620ft high Bridalveil Falls. The dark coloration of the rock is due to lichens growing on the surface.

This shot was taken along the main road running thru the valley. The turnout here is about 1/4mi long and was nearly full every time I stopped. I'm glad I walked the entire length. This was the only spot that had nice trees framing the shot. The placement was such that I have to wonder if the NPS maintains these trees for just this purpose.

Bridalveil Falls

Another shot of Bridalveil Falls.

This time I used an "ND3.0" filter, which reduces the amount of light entering the camera to 0.1% of normal (1/1000th or ~10 f-stops). This allows the shutter to stay open much longer. In this case the above image was taken at ~1/100th of a second, while this shot was exposed for 10sec. The main effect  is to allow the water to "paint" a veil-like streak as opposed to seeing the details in the falling water.  You will also notice a slight reddening in this image. Most of this is due to the time of day (later afternoon), but a small amount is due to the increased exposure time.

Bridalveil Falls and Merced River

Bridalveil Falls and the Merced River

Yosemite Falls

Yosemite Falls are the highest measured waterfall in North America, with a total drop of ~2400ft. Here we see the water of the upper falls drop ~1400ft!

Yosemite Falls

A 5sec exposure of Yosemite Falls with the ND3.0 filter. The little patch of white just below center is the lower falls.

Falls from Glacier Point

Looking down into Little Yosemite Valley, a small branch off the south side of the main valley. The falls you see here are part of the Merced River

Unknown Falls along CA140

A nice falls along CA120.



San Francisco

Yosemite Valley

Yosemite Waterfalls

Hetch Hetchy Reservoir

Tioga Pass Road 1

Tioga Pass Road 2

Mammoth Lakes – Fire…

Mammoth Lakes –  ... and Ice

South on US395

Moonrise at the Golden Gate


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All images copyright ©2009 by Al Hann

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