This is the aptly named Mirror Lake in Yosemite Valley. The last time I saw it, around 10 years ago, it looked a lot different – it was bigger and less “mucky”. Through natural processes, the lake is filling in and will someday disappear altogether and become a meadow.
In this photo, I applied an HDR affect which gives it a surrealistic quality, although Yosemite is surrealistically beautiful all on its own without the aid of Photoshop.
Here’s one of Sean climbing El Capitan. Hoo boy did he take to mountain climbing. I could hardly keep up. Of course I had to carry the camera, so it was a bit more challenging for me what with my bad knee and all.
Here is one of the approximately 30,537 pictures I took of flowers while I was in California, most of which are in Cousin Judi’s fabulous garden. I learned how to make the frame in Photoshop in a video tutorial at Yanik’s Photo School, which you can see here if you are so inclined. He has great easy to follow video tutorials and I love the soothing quality of his voice.
Yosemite is one of my favorite places on the entire Earth. It’s a place where my love for God and geology intersect. In these exact coordinates in the universe, God and Earth are exposed and revealed in such a way that they are both breathtakingly clear and yet all the more mysterious. In his book, A Brief History of Time, Stephen Hawking says that when we understand eternity, then we will see the face of God. In Yosemite, I come as close to that as anywhere I’ve ever been.
A month or so before AD and I married, we hiked Half Dome, which is that huge “half dome” shaped granite rock you see in the distant background. When we set off on the hike, I didn’t really know if I could make it because it’s a mostly vertical, 20-mile round trip, give or take. But I decided that day that I would go as far as I could go and when I could go no more, I would go back. So I would go as far as I could go and then I would rest. And then I would get up and go some more. And eventually we made it. I recall that it took about 12 hours, maybe more. Such is life, one step at a time.
As we walked along that day back in 1998, not fully aware of what was ahead for us, not knowing if we would make it to the top or have to turn back, we imagined that some day we would have a little boy or girl and that we would take them to Yosemite. There has been a lot of stopping and resting along the way in those past 12 years, but on this trip, that dream came true.