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Misty Hike at Yosemite's Vernal Fall

Vernal Falls; Matt Carey photo
Matt Carey
Monday, November 12, 2007

I don't know what the weather is like in your neck of the woods, but around here, in the Great Northwest, we've got clouds and rain. This photo, actually taken in April, reminds me of what the landscape looks like around here right now - low light, misty, rainy, wet, and gray. Many of the photos I post in this column show the hyper-color beautiful shots of sunsets or wildflowers, which is perhaps why I like that this photo is on the opposite side of that spectrum. Here's what Matt says about the photo:

This is one of my all time favorite photos. The picture was taken during a hike along the Mist Trail to the top of Nevada Falls in Yosemite National Park back in April of this year. This picture is of my girlfriend hiking the trail with Vernal Falls captured in the background. Because it was April, the volume of water in the falls was high. I love the perspective, the minimal color (the backpack’s red and the green grass are great, minor accents to picture, I think), and the overall feeling of the photo. It was a rainy day with low cloud cover/fog and that weather, along with the mist being created from the falls, gives the picture a cool feeling for me.

Thanks for submitting this shot Matt. I agree with you on your points, especially that the little bit of red on the pack really pops out considering all the gray muted tones in the rest of the shot.

This photo was suggested to me through email. If you've got an exceptional photo you'd like to see here, drop us a line.

A great shot. I'm not an English teacher, but the correct name is Vernal Fall - not Falls. If water cascades on its journey down it's called FALLS - as in Yosemite Falls. If the water essentially goes straight down its FALL....singular. April, May and early June are typically gushers at the falls in Yosemite. This year the snowack was only 25% of normal, so the flow was way down. Most of the falls were trickles by mid-July.

Also, I recommend hiking poles for this hike. There are 700 granite steps on the lower Mist Trail - the wet one!

Rick D

What strikes me about this photo is its lack of color. Most photographers are taught to look for that splash of red when composing their shots, but the lack of color, the almost monochromatic composition, of this shot really sells it for me.

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