• This saucer shaped cloud stayed here for hours! It is formed on the downwind side of the mountain from a pressure wave.
  • The Richmond-San Rafael Bridge.
  • A Monkeyflower in bloom.
  • I waited for the fog to flow behind this rock to make the rock stand out from the background.
  • Mill Valley
  • Larkspur
  • Corte Madera
  • Click below to see the view up here from Larkspur Landing.

  • The shadow of Mt. Tamalpais as the sun sets behind the camera.
  • San Francisco is behind this fog bank.
  • Amazingly, about 50 miles east of here, it is basically desert!
  • These pressure wave clouds are, I believe, called lenticular clouds. - *Flickr_Dawg
  • Yep, that's it!

Tamalpais Glory - Marin County, California

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Last weekend, I went up on Mt. Tamalpais (10Mi. NW of San Francisco) for the sunset. The fog was too thick towards the ocean so I went to the other side and saw this rather intense scene! No HDR.

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Settings etc.:

Canon 5D Mark II
Canon 17-40 @ 20
3.2-second exposure @ F16 (to show the moving fog, but not too much!)
2 0.9 (3-stop) Lee neutral density soft grad filters
(Lee is having production problems (can't keep up with demand) so Singh Ray makes good ones too.)
No polarizer
ISO 50
Small Slik Sprint mini II tripod with Manfrotto 322RC2 pistol grip ball head
RAW file processed with Capture One by Phase One
TIFF file processed with Photoshop


At sunset, the coastal fog began to move inland towards the distant horizon. As it did, it wrapped around Mt. Tamalpais creating fantastic swirling shapes. It was moving fast! I used a 3-second exposure to capture the motion of the fog as the last rays of the sun turned the high clouds a brilliant red. The fog looked a bit 'mushy' using a 10-second exposure, but 3-seconds seemed to be just about right.

Usually by June, the flowers have faded for the dry season, but because of a cool spring, they were still there fortunately, so I backed up the hill under a prickly Manzanita bush to get the flowers into the foreground. Sausalito and Mill Valley are in the foreground with the Richmond San Rafael bridge crossing the bay under the fog to the left. San Francisco is behind the fog bank to the right.

The map shows exactly where this is.


Google Earth

Simply the best way to scout out locations that there is. You can see sun angles and pre-visualize light under lots of different conditions. Sometimes you can actually pre-compose your shots! This has saved me many thousands of vertical feet of climbing by avoiding spots with blocked views etc.

Satellite imagery (choose 'National' for a local US region or use your fave website)

Tide charting and preditions: (chose your area in US, other countries have similar websites)

Jim Patterson Photography, and 644 other people added this photo to their favorites.

View 20 more comments

  1. Patrick Leitz 34 months ago | reply

    I saw this in the 200+ Faves group and Faved it.

  2. PHOTOGENESIS >>> 34 months ago | reply

    what a Nice Shot:)
    you have been invited to join
    *Shining Hearts Award*


  3. TARIQ-M 34 months ago | reply

    Congratulations! 7
    The Amazing World of Landscape Photography

  4. anniekins91607 33 months ago | reply

    a picture from a dream

  5. jagudo 33 months ago | reply

    Amazing view.

  6. F Fazal 33 months ago | reply

    Wow, love the view!

  7. JRVANDELLEN 33 months ago | reply

    Wow! What a sight!!

  8. P3nfighter 33 months ago | reply

    definatly WOW

  9. Gussie_j 33 months ago | reply

    Gorgeous, gorgeous colours!

  10. QL-ART 32 months ago | reply

    You are invited to post your great photo to Just Fav !

    Just Fav (p1/fave+com5)

  11. Nathalielowes 31 months ago | reply

    Wow, very beautiful. I love the colours!

  12. bartholowaty | Photography 30 months ago | reply

    Awesome Pic!
    Your work is amazing...!
    Thank you for sharing your beautiful

    ...keep up your really good work ;-)


    Please take time to check my photos.
    If you like them please add me as contact.

  13. Roger_T 28 months ago | reply

    what a mysthy shot. Great view!!

  14. isynoho 26 months ago | reply

    Love your reds, please post them all here:



  15. joelerskates 23 months ago | reply

    What an amazing shot! Well done, Patrick!

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