Alpenglow, Crystal Range, Sierra Nevada, Dead Oak

Highway 104, Sacramento County, CA
Highway 104, Sacramento County, CA

A great ending to an otherwise unspectacular shooting day.  I do love the occasional tree skeletons that dot the local pastures and was happy to see one available for this photograph.

(click through on the image to view in 700px)

Sometimes friends are surprised I do not mind the hour drive out to Sacramento city center for lunch or dinner.  Why?  All that means to me is that I am an hour further than where I normally take photos and I can usually find something interesting by just driving around.

This plan of of wondering around almost did not bare fruit yesterday…

Search for industrial buildings.  Check.  Found the soon-to-be shuttered Campbell’s Soup Factory.  Boring in the day time.  No visible plume of smoke or steam to shoot long exposures on and the entire property is surrounded by chain-linked fence.

The half-built outdoor shopping center with no activity for the last 3 years.   Check.  Security patrols are still posted.  No chance on shooting there.

Head towards the Sacramento River Delta.  Check.  I even stopped at the abandoned cinder block cattle outhouse I had seen previously.  It did not look as interesting now that I was up close and the skies were boring and flat.

Stop at the decomissioned nuclear power plant and take long exposures of the steam coming from the cooling stacks from the still-functioning non-nuclear power plant next door.  Check.  I actually did stop and shoot here for about 30 minutes.  There may be some shots of interest, but nothing that made me say wow when I stepped out of the car on arrival.

I was actually resigned to going home with only the power plant photos and nothing else.  The skies were relatively clear to the northeast and the clouds to the east, south, and west were going to obscure an chance of the overall spectacular sunset.

Less than 10 miles from home, I notice the tops of the distant mountain range awash in this pinkish light.  The only problem?  The small ridge I was driving towards is dotted with oak trees that would have made for a very cluttered foreground.  Maybe, just maybe, once the road crests the ridge and the begins the small decline, there will be a spot I can shoot from.  Check.    Wide open cattle grazing pastures with only a few trees.  I could move here or there to either include or exclude them.

The mountain range is the very one that borders Lake Tahoe.

Other recent posts with oak trees:

EXIF data: Nikon D7000, center weighted metering mode, 160mm, ISO 100, 1/6 sec, f/16

Alpenglow, Crystal Range, Sierra Nevada, Dead Oak.  Sacramento County, California.  December 08, 2012. © Copyright Steven Tze – all rights reserved.


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