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Capturing Yosemite: The Notes of a Lomo Traveler

“The splendor of Yosemite burst upon us and it was glorious.” These were the immortal words that Ansel Adams wrote when he first visited Yosemite in 1916.

Photo by Ansel Adams

Decades later, as I gazed upon the Yosemite Valley and its majestic granite peaks from just outside the Wawona Tunnel, I heard these words in my head as if he’d spoken them to me and knew that they were true. It was indeed GLORIOUS. And it was humbling.

I closed my eyes and I could almost see him with his trusty Kodak Brownie capturing everything with great enthusiasm like I was going to as soon as I finished breathing it all in.

It took me several minutes and a moment of panic I have to admit. The truth was everything there was so arrestingly beautiful that I didn’t know whether to just sit there and consume all of it with my own eyes or start capturing everything on film. It didn’t help that I was standing there along with a hundred or so tourists, oohing and ahhh-ing and clicking away with their digital cameras and camera phones like maniacs.

The valley looked just as pristine and as untouched as it was a hundred years ago. But looks are at times deceiving and I knew that a closer look would prove that Yosemite had become somewhat of a circus in the last few decades. So it was comforting to know that the golden meadows, crystal-clear lakes, and granite mountain tops that had inspired Ansel Adams are still there, existing and inspiring people… inspiring me.

My mind was already racing as I tore my attention away from the scene before me and reached for my cameras, which until then were slung over my shoulders forgotten. I was armed with many rolls of film and I wanted to use them all to capture every inch of that place. I wanted to photograph everything and anything! Unfortunately, I was only there for the weekend and that wasn’t enough time to photograph Yosemite’s prominent features, let alone every inch of its 700,000-something acres.

As I took several shots of the famous Tunnel View, I tried to decide on five things I wanted to do most but it was no use. How could anyone possibly chose when there were hundreds of things to experience and photograph?!

I managed to calm myself down enough to realize that Yosemite had been around for hundreds of years and it will be for a few hundred more. I had time. I could always come back. After all, even the great Ansel Adams had to go back several times before he could capture the perfect shots.

So I stepped back, took a deep breath, and let myself go.

And then I let Yosemite capture me, instead.

written by blueskyandhardrock

25 comments

  1. -walsh-

    -walsh-

    wow, stunning photos!!

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  2. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @-walsh- thank you! Hope you enjoyed the article too! xo

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  3. vicuna

    vicuna

    great article and stunning photos! Congrats for the great work @blueskyandhardrock! :)

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  4. stouf

    stouf

    Bravo!

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  5. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @vicuna @stouf thank you, guys! It means a lot coming from two of my personal lomogurus! xo

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  6. undiscovered

    undiscovered

    What a joy to read! Really nice!

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  7. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @undiscovered thank you, you're sweet xo

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  8. clickiemcpete

    clickiemcpete

    Nice article Michelle, stunning shots and of course, amazing place.

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  9. dida

    dida

    loved your article! :)

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  10. gepo1303

    gepo1303

    Amazoing place indeed. I'm happy I've seen it this year.

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  11. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @clickiemcpete @dida thank you my dears! i appreciate your kind words and i'm glad that you enjoyed my article... more to come soon!

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  12. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @gepo1303 i'm glad you did! xo

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  13. feelux

    feelux

    Stunning captures! I myself would love to go there sometime.

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  14. elkilla

    elkilla

    I love this photos! Great article :D

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  15. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @feelux thank you! fly to LA and i will take you! we can camp out there and explore the entire park! ;)
    @elkilla thank you so much! xo

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  16. peropero

    peropero

    ok so you're taking me there, right?

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  17. feelux

    feelux

    @blueskyandhardrock sounds great! I'll keep in touch. Hahaha!

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  18. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @peropero of course! @feelux make sure that you do!

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  19. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    grazie, peropero, elkilla, feelux, sobetion, vici, neanderthalis, dida, clickiemcpete, emkei, alana1194, uncle_jay, undiscovered, davidobryan, vicker313, stouf, gorics, vicuna, julea, and -walsh- thank you for your lomo love and support, my dears!

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  20. ihave2pillows

    ihave2pillows

    What a treat !!

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  21. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @ihave2pillows thank you!

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  22. stuckintraffic

    stuckintraffic

    I just looove this whole article so much! Can't wait to see Yosemite! Next year perhaps!

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam
  23. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @stuckintraffic really? wow, that means a lot! thank you! yes, please go see it for yourself and when you do, try to avoid the touristy spots... those kinda take the magic away! :D

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  24. clownshoes

    clownshoes

    Nice!

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  25. blueskyandhardrock

    blueskyandhardrock

    @clownshoes thank you! xo

    almost 2 years ago · report as spam

Read this article in another language

This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: Nederlands.