Landscape Photography
of James L. Snyder

First Light, El Capitan
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First Light, El Capitan
Linhof Master Technika 2000 camera, 65mm Schneider Super-Angulon f/8 lens, center filter, Fujicolor Pro 160S film, 57 megapixels
All Images ©Copyright 2010 James L. Snyder. All Rights Reserved

First Light, El Capitan

Southside Drive, Yosemite Valley, Yosemite National Park, CA, 6/13/2008

At sunrise on a clear springtime day I arrived at the south shore of the Merced River in Yosemite Valley opposite El Capitan Meadow to watch the sunlight work its way down El Capitan - the largest exposed granite face in the world. On this morning the air was still and the river flowed slowly enough to produce good reflections. This is a wide angle view looking north just as the day's first sunlight fell upon El Capitan Meadow. Mainly in shade at this hour, El Capitan appeared ivory, the meadow and trees pastel. Here we see the most delicate early morning light on the meadow; moments later the river itself was bathed in sunlight, muting the reflections and completely transforming the scene. El Capitan rises 3,600 feet above the valley floor. The formation was named by the Mariposa Battalion when it explored the Yosemite valley in 1851. El Capitan ("the captain" or "the chief") was a loose Spanish translation of the local Native American name for the cliff. Along with the majority of the other rock formations in Yosemite Valley, El Capitan was carved by glaciers.

First Light, El Capitan

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