Willows in the Mist

On the way to my second day at snowy Vulcan Mountain Wilderness Preserve, I stopped at Lake Henshaw for sunrise in the mist. These photos turned out to be some of my favorites from this year. I love the simplicity of form and color. The fog makes it possible to obscure the distracting elements from a photo.

Simplicity
Reflection

The fog thickened and thinned, but I didn’t expect to see the sun. I was surprised when the it rose above the distant hills in the mist, showing a dimly lit ball. I had only a few moments to capture this photo before the sun was blown out by its own brightness.

Sun in Willows

Later the shifting fog nearly totally cleared from the lake, only to return a few minutes later.

Tranquility
Willows in the Mist

Finally snowy mountains revealed themselves on the northern horizon, the prominent one being Hot Springs Mountain.

Hot Springs Mountain

Click here to see my “best of” collection from this morning.

Snow on Vulcan Mountain

Last week we had a cold front come through San Diego with snow levels dropping to around 4,000 feet. I had been hoping for “bad weather” and headed to Vulcan Mountain Wilderness Preserve, near Julian. It was the day after Thanksgiving and the tail end of the storm was just passing. Here are some of my images from this and the following day.

But first, please help me choose some photos that you think would look good in print. Go to http://www.pallant.smugmug.com. I would appreciate it if you would look through my galleries and send me a note or email with a few titles you like. Thank you!

This tree’s branches were reaching out in every direction.
This was captured at the high point of my hike. What an amazing tree. I love the way it was all by itself. To add to that, the fog and blowing snow hid the background completely. I loved taking pictures of this one and walked around it to get several angles. I call this one “Bad Hair Day.”
White Out
These were also at the top of the hill.

I returned to Vulcan Mountain the following day. The storm had passed, but the snow higher up was still fresh. If you look carefully, you can see two hikers near the center of the photo below.

Barren Cold
This is a scene in some dense trees at the top of the mountain. Stepping under these trees was like stepping into a refrigerator. It was colder under the trees than out in the open. And the trees were dropping snow and ice bombs. It was like standing in a melting ice box. I took several pictures, but decided not to press my luck by overstaying my welcome.
Snowy Limbs

Click here to see the complete collection.