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Stormy Fall Afternoon from Valley View in Yosemite National Park

Stormy Fall Afternoon from Valley View in Yosemite National Park


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It was a cool Autumn Day at Yosemite National Park.  Storms overnight added a dusting of snow to the top of El Capitan and Half Dome. The storm clouds kept rolling in and out all day causing us to have to duck in out of rain showers.  

As we were getting ready to leave the park for the day, I wanted to stop by Valley View which I heard was a great place to get sunset photos.    

I wasn't sure if it would work out with the storm clouds that were filling the sky and wasn't sure if I would be able to capture anything with the cold rain that was starting to come down again. 

When we arrived at Valley View, I walked out to survey the spot.  The Merced River was not smooth and reflective, but rather choppy in the wind and rain.  I was disappointed, as I was really hoping to get a good shot here with the beautiful Fall Colors. 

The storm clouds were swirling and beautiful, but it was not what I was hoping to capture. Suddenly, the rain died down and the winds calmed. All of a sudden, it became very quiet and still. The clouds parted revealing Bridalveil Falls which was flowing with water from the storms overnight.  

Because the storms were coming and going all day, I knew I didn't have much time.  I ran to the car to grab my tripod and camera. As I was hurrying back, I slipped and my foot fully submerged in the ice-cold river water. I caught myself before all of me and my camera equipment landed in the water.  I pushed on a little farther to try to capture the beauty of the fall colors framing the scene.  Another storm cloud was rolling in as fast as the other had left.  I knew I didn't have much time.  

I found a spot and quickly set up and took the shot, just as the winds started to once again pick up and ruin the beauty of the reflection on the water. Then, the cold rain started to sprinkle out of the sky. I snatched my camera and covered it with a protective rain covering and made my way back across the rocks and logs carefully so as to not slip again.   

Once back in the car, I changed out of my wet hiking boots and reviewed the images on the back of my camera.  I was happy to have gotten this wonderful shot in the brief 5-minute pause of rain that cold November afternoon. 

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