Autumn Aspen Trees, Boulder Field. Eastern Sierra Nevada, California. October 3, 2012. © Copyright 2012 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.
Colorful golden autumn aspen trees among eastern Sierra boulders.
This is yet another of the small set of eastern Sierra fall color photographs I made this year, almost entirely on this single day in very early October, when we paused here on our long drive to location far east of here. In a typical year, I would regard this very early date in October as being a bit too early for prime aspen color, but we did find some stands of trees that were showing very intense coloration. In some ways this wasn’t a total surprise, as I had seen some very early aspen color a couple of weeks earlier in sections of the eastern Sierra. One wonders what the cause of the unusual schedule of change might have been this year: the very dry preceding winter, global climate change, or simply an outlier in the normal range of variation.
In any case, we made the best use of this single day of eastern Sierra aspen chasing, starting early in the morning close to an eastern Sierra lake where I know I can usually find good color and then working outwards from there. After a midday break we resumed our search in the afternoon, heading up a slightly different route where we found a lot of very bright golden trees. This group was in a location that I return to frequently – an area of very broken granite and large boulders, with trees of various sizes. It is also an area that loses the sun quite early at this time of year, since it lies east of very tall mountains leading upward to the Sierra crest. To my way of thinking, this is a good thing, since I like to shoot in the soft and diffused shaded light.
G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer whose subjects include the Pacific coast, redwood forests, central California oak/grasslands, the Sierra Nevada, California deserts, urban landscapes, night photography, and more.
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Text, photographs, and other media are © Copyright G Dan Mitchell (or others when indicated) and are not in the public domain and may not be used on websites, blogs, or in other media without advance permission from G Dan Mitchell.