Camping at Shadow Lake
I just came back from a backpacking trip in the Ansel Adams Wilderness. It was beautiful and refreshing. I nearly forgot that I have no job and no money. Four friends and I started from Devil's Postpile National Monument and hiked up to Shadow Lake where we camped. The area around Shadow lake is really crowded. I felt something less than isolated and alone at our campsite.
Despite the many hikers and backpackers, the area is beautiful. I slept under the stars and woke up with the morning sun. The first morning I inched out of my sleeping bag and climbed a nearby dome of rock with my new tripod and 35mm camera to catch the first rays of light as they painted the eastern-facing spires.
The panorama is my favorite format for landscape photography, and this post is dedicated to the best panoramas I made on this trip. I consider a few of them to be some of the finest panoramas I've yet taken. Many of them are were composed on film and are of a greater detail and quality then previous images. I consider these a small step forward in my development as an aspiring photographer.
The High Country
At 9500 ft. trees are rare and gnarled, giving way to inviting meadows with world-class views. In the panorama below, my friend, Jordan crouches to snap the perfect picture.
Four More Alpine Lakes
From our base camp at Shadow Lake, we climbed to successively higher lakes starting with Ediza then on to Iceburg and Cecile Lakes. Ediza Lake was lovely, nestled in among the bare peaks in a sheltered valley.
Continuing on, past Ediza and up several thousand feet, through beautiful meadows, brings you to Iceburg. While the trail to Iceburg is not on any maps, it is reasonably well traveled with only a few challenging sections. The extra distance is certainly worth it. Iceburg lake was the clearest lake I have ever seen. You could see (by my estimates) through 15 to 20 feet of water to the lake's bottom. If you make it up to this lake, make sure to stop for a cool drink before continuing on.Cecile Lake is the highest of the lot at 10300 ft. Cecile lake seems precariously perched on the side of a mountain, ready, with the slightest shift, to tumble down into Iceburge or Minaret lakes. The landscape is barren--even Martian. Scene is one giant rockfall, void of almost all life. The forceful wind seems bent on ripping you off the ground and blowing you back down where you belong. I climbed up the rocks at this lake and took the following 360-degree, 20-image panorama. It is by far the most ambitious panorama I've undertaken. Shot on 35mm film, Jordan had to hold down the legs of my tripod to keep if from blowing over while I carefully lined up shot after shot to reveal both Iceburg and Cecil Lakes clinging to the rocky spires of the Sierra Nevadas.Finally, as I hiked to the far side of Cecile Lake, I peered down at the largest of the four: Minaret Lake.