It’s been snowing on and off since early November and when I wrote the first draft of this post, on March 20th, it was snowing! And, it snowed again last night, and the night before, etc., etc.! While the 20th might have felt like the first day of spring in many places, it didn’t here. We’ve had more than an average snowfall this year and there is a lot out there that will melt. I’ll expect a healthy mud season! Precipitation is always appreciated and needed to fill up our rivers and reservoirs. I can already see that the water level of our local, Ridgway Reservoir is looking higher for this time of year. The last time we had a very snowy winter the summer wildflowers were late, but extraordinary … so there’s that too. Following is an assortment of images shot in the latter half of our (seemingly) ‘endless winter’!
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Sunset and the golden hour are undoubtedly the most popular time to be out shooting … but not just because it’s a beautiful time of day! It’s just a wonderful experience to be there, and in the moment. It can feel absolutely magical when the elements come together, creating pure visual splendor. I like to go out in the late afternoon to scout for a good spot, and often one that is looking in a direction other than west. After all, there’s more to sunset than watching that big fiery ball sink below the horizon. I look for the last light hitting the tallest peaks while day’s end shadows creep upward from below. Changing seasons create new opportunities as the sun’s position alters its path over peaks and ridges, striking the landscape differently. Alpenglow is another wonderful sight, often offering beautiful gradient skies that cool as twilight approaches. And when I’m lucky a scene can display both, last light and alpenglow. Two of the scenes below are similar compositions shot just minutes apart. I included them both to show how the color of the light changes in a short time. I hope you enjoy seeing these late day captures, shot in different directions.
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Driving a back road I noticed a lone cluster of gamble oaks catching some low light. The contrast between the snow-covered mountains, and grassy foreground contributed to the scene, along with the beautiful cloud formations overhead. Soon the trees were in shadow and the mountains lit up with beautiful pink alpenglow. What a privilege it was to witness these ooh and aah moments.