Share this photo on Twitter Share this photo on Facebook

Snowy Dogwoods - Yosemite National Park

Posted by
Barbara Lee (Oakland, United States) on 25 February 2010 in Landscape & Rural and Portfolio.

Here is another photo from my January, 2008 trip into the park. The weekend before I arrived, they had a big rainstorm which knocked out any evidence of snow. Then, the day before I drove up, a big storm dumped nearly a foot of snow all over the valley. At 4,000 feet, Yosemite Valley does not always get much snow, so this was a real treat. What made it extra special was the fact that it all fell on a "clean slate" and every flake of snow was pristine.

I had never been into the valley in the winter before. Other photographers who I met that week told me that they had driven up for 20 years in a row looking for conditions like this. I should say that on my drive up route 40 along the Merced River, my eyes were filled with tears. Tears in recognition of the awesome scene before me. It just took my breath away and filled me with joy. Nature is my church, my cathedral, and it is times like this that I feel closest to "God"....that universal spirit which is all around us all of the time.

These dogwoods were in Camp Curry. I was struck by the intricate patterns of branches and the diagonal line of the main trunk leaning to the left. I composed to put the base of that line in a power point of the lower third of the image. I did some light painting to bring out the texture of the bark, and made sure that the white balance was set to capture the whiteness of the snow, but other than that, no other adjustments were needed. Just mother nature, once again in her full winter splendor.

NIKON D80 1/90 second F/16.0 ISO 100 75 mm (35mm equiv.)

To view more of my images, visit my portfolio at Barbara Lee Photography. Also, visit my Facebook fan page at!/pages/Barbara-Lee-Photography/244133283497[/url

Spotlight photo at

john4jack from Corvallis, Oregon, United States

Excellent POV. I love the light on the trunk.

25 Feb 2010 5:06pm

Self-Indulgence from Chicagoland, United States

Great light and texture to the snow. You look at these trees and wonder sometimes how much could balance on the branches. Usually mid-day it starts falling off.

25 Feb 2010 6:30pm

Julie Brown from Indianapolis, United States

Barbara, I am really taken with your description of encountering the scene as you drove along the Merced. Nature is my "church" as well, and I often describe being in the woods or the mountains with those words. Thank you for including your process, I find that to be as interesting as the image itself. :)

26 Feb 2010 12:13am

DarkElf from Perth, Australia

great story behind this shot and a wonderful photo as well! i like the tangled "web" of branches and lines as well as wonderfully white snow and the tree trunk on the left!

26 Feb 2010 1:57am

B. Thomas from Arlington, Texas, United States

Wonderful shot. Thanks for the story that goes with it. What wonderful luck to be there at that time.

26 Feb 2010 2:19am

1/90 second
ISO 100
75 mm (35mm equiv.)