Sunset over a backcountry lake | Sierra Nevada mountains


UPDATE 05.30.2012: I gave this photo a rare bump to the front of my stream because I've done enough reworking on it to render the scene more realistically (thanks to Peter Luxem's always great suggestions) that I think it's worth a second look. What do you think? Here is the original file I uploaded yesterday, which looks almost silly to me now.


I woke up on this beautiful July morning to blue skies and cozy temperatures.


A few hours later, it was pouring and hailing as thunder bellowed across the sky, lightning pierced the jagged peaks, and winds assaulted trees and whipped right through my two jackets. I had nine miles left to hike for the day – with 45 pounds on my back, I should add -- and this was not going to stop me! The feeling of vulnerability only made the scenery more humbling. When I finally arrived at these lakes and selected my campsite, there was nobody else at the lake and I hadn’t seen another person all afternoon.


Just before sunset, as often happens in the mountains when the warm layer of air near the ground rapidly weakens, the skies began to clear. But would they clear enough?! The clouds soon vanished to the west and it became evident that an incredible light show was on its way to the east…just where the light would be headed!


A few minutes later, every cloud you see in this sky turned pink; the most dramatic sky I’ve ever seen. I could feel the fire igniting the depths of my heart, clearing my mind and making me ready as ever to see another day. I'll post that one soon... (but if you don't want to wait, *cough* it's always on my website ;)


I don’t think I realized quite how special this light was until I looked back through my photos from the two-week trip and realized that this was one of the only days I had much in the way of clouds in the right place at the right time. I’ve been able to look through those photos and almost completely re-live my trip. I hope you’re able to live a little of it through this one.


I’m titling this one “Ignition” both for the fiery feel and because I constantly need to remind myself to keep my own fire burning as I find myself perpetually overwhelmed in these last few weeks of the school year…we can make it through!!


Thanks very much for your visit; I always appreciate hearing (er…reading) your thoughts. Will stop by lots of your streams after I get a little sleep :)


~ Jeff






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Taken on July 24, 2010