San Francisco: In and Out

This is the second image in my series of not-so-common viewpoints of San Francisco. This picture was taken from Sausalito hills. Despite the extreme variation in the dynamic range of this image, the Nikon D600 did a great job in capturing the whole scene in a single exposure. More than two years later, I still feel the D600 is one of the best cameras Nikon ever made. In order not to overexpose the light trails, I bumped up the ISO to 400 and dropped the shutter to 17 seconds.

San Francisco from Sausalito Hills.

San Francisco from Sausalito Hills. Nikon D600, Nikon 24-120mm at 24mm, f/13 for 17 seconds. ISO 400.

To reach the spot from where this photo is taken, you need to exit at Alexander Way from the Golden gate bridge and get on to Conselman drive. Keep driving past  Kirby Cove and you will reach a traffic roundabout. You should be able to park in a small parking lot near the roundabout or pull over to the road side. Take the Coastal Trail from here. It starts with a steep incline and at about 0.2 miles, forks into Golden Gate Bridge Trail and Sausalito Point (if I am not mistaken). Take the GGB Trail and continue. At the next fork, do not take the GGB trail, but continue. In about 0.6 miles, you should reach this point with a small cliff where you can setup your stuff. Some places in this moderately strenuous trail are a bit slippery, so be watchful.

The Romantic Rock

The keyhole light phenomenon that I talked about earlier is quite popular with the local folks. It is so romantic many couples get married at this spot with this shaft of light through the keyhole as a backdrop. Just imagine how magical the wedding photos will look like!

We did see a wedding event on the day, the only problem was the nuisance created by us photographers running around and distracting the ceremony. This image is a HDR. I really wished I brought my wide angle Nikon.

Keyhole Rock, Pfeiffer Beach

Keyhole Rock, Pfeiffer Beach

Light at the beginning of the tunnel

Pfeiffer beach is one of the popular spots for photographers living in the Bay Area, especially during the months of November and December when the sun’s rays emerge through the tunnel as a shaft of light around sunset. It is a spectacular sight. If you want to experience this, I would suggest leaving early and arriving at the beach by at least 3 PM. They have a “one out, one in” policy which might make it difficult to gain an entry if you are late. I was not able to do this shoot last year for exactly the same reason.

After waiting for a year, I was finally able to experience this beautiful phenomenon today.

EXIF: Nikon D600, Nikon 24-120mm f/4 at 50mm, f/7.1, 1/6 sec, ISO 100

Light at the beginning of the tunnel

Light at the beginning of the tunnel

San Francisco from far

San Francisco probably is one of the most photographed cities in the world. That also means the same compositions captured over and over again. This photo is one of my first attempts to capture a not-so-common view of this beautiful city. This was captured from the Berkeley Hills.

EXIF: Nikon D600, Tokina 70-300 at 170mm, f/8.0, 13 secs

San Francisco from Berkeley Hills

San Francisco from Berkeley Hills

The crowded Lighthouse

Drove to the Santa Cruz mountains on a Sunday morning to capture this photo. Over the last couple of years, I have shot this lighthouse few times during sunrise on weekends . I used to be the lone photographer among the tens of fisherman getting ready for a morning catch. These days, you can spot numerous photographers coming in early to catch the beautiful sunrise. While I am happy to see them and enjoy their company, they also make it very difficult to setup a long exposure! I removed some “ghosts” in PP in this image.

Walton Lighthouse

Walton Lighthouse

EXIF: Nikon D600, Nikon 24-120mm f/4 at 24mm, f8.0, 162 seconds

Joshua Thanksgiving

Shot this image during last thanksgiving. Almost forgot about it until I saw this photo used by the US Department of the Interior on their thanksgiving message. Got pretty excited when it appeared on my FB Feed. I remember pulling over the side and telling my family to be safe while I go a little further into the desert to find a photogenic Joshua tree as a backdrop for the sunset. When I returned, I saw about 10 cars pulled over to capture the sunset! Joshua Tree National Park is a beautiful place to camp during the winter times! This is a 3 exposure HDR.

Joshua Tree Sunset