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The Sierra Nevada, by Gene Mezereny
NOTE: this exhibit appeared in October 1998. Click here to visit the current showcase.
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Creek Spire Clark
Falls II Keeler
Creek Canyon Stormy
Sunrise Bubbs Creek
Valley About the
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Little Lakes Valley is one of the most pleasant diversions in the entire Sierra Nevada Range. The canyon culminates abruptly as you reach the base of 13700 foot plus Bear Creek Spire. This "winter" scene was taken on a late spring ski trip in May. After a night of sub-zero temperatures and nearly a foot of new snow we were treated to a clear and crisp dawn with the promise of excellent skiing in the amphitheaters below the peak.
Winter is one of my favorite times to travel to Yosemite. Greatly diminished crowds most certainly guarantee solitude and a restful retreat. This is an easterly view from Glacier Point.
One of most mature (recognized) photo subjects in the park Half Dome can still provide fresh and unique portraits of the High Sierra. Timing (and luck) is everything.
A direct view of the falls. The light can be quite exquisite and film does not do this natural marvel justice.
Described by some as Yosemite's natural fire fall a short time window each winter provides one of the best photo opportunities in the Valley.
Along the mountaineer's route to Mount Whitney. The hike is somewhat more difficult and far more spectacular than hiking the Whitney Trail. Mount Whitney may be the highest peak in the lower 48 states but this satellite to the south is a much more impressive rampart.
North of Bishop, Long Valley provides gently rolling terrain which is excellent for XC-skiing. This can only be improved upon by the back drop of the White Mountains a few air miles to the east forming the western edge of the Great Basin.
A unique view of the Lost Arrow Spire and Yosemite Point Buttress as a winter storm clears from the Valley.
This rugged escarpment presents itself as you begin the 100 switchbacks leading to Trail Crest on the Mount Whitney Trail. The pyramid shaped high point along this ridge is Mount Muir. The skyline ridge in the far background is the East Ridge route on Mount Russell.
Mid spring in the high country of Rock Creek. As winter slowly recedes XC-skiers are quickly replaced by fisherman, hikers, and climbers. There is no off-season here.
The headwaters of Bubbs Creek lead the John Muir Trail over Forester Pass. The monsoon season arrived abruptly during the middle of this trip. You can expect rain most afternoons. After waking from a flapping tent I was greeted by this awesome display of color as the sun cracked the horizon. Yes it did rain that day.
The highest body of water in the United States. In many the years the surface may never thaw. This unusual view is looking north from the east ridge of Mount Russell.
Another one the Valley's most photographed attractions.
Between the base of Vernal Falls and the mouth of Yosemite Valley the Merced River flows quietly and peacefully with varying backdrops of forest and meadow.
About the Exhibit:
The Sierra Nevada provides a wide range of opportunities for the photographer. The possibilities for new adventures are boundless. I made a conscious choice to work with 35mm equipment because of compact size and generally lighter weight. Adding to already heavy packs while traveling in the backcountry or climbing was not part of the equation. On trips where climbing is involved I carry only two lenses a w i d e angle and short telephoto, or a high end point and shoot camera. Any more than that and you will likely miss the opportunity or deposit an expensive piece of gear into oblivion. Fiddling with too much camera gear while standing on small ledges does not add to my mountain experience. When weight or logistics are less of a concern a fast 50mm lens finds its way into the pack too.
These images are a few selections from the past fifteen years of some of my travels in and around the Sierra Nevada. These images portray the most rugged and wild nature of the Sierra yet access to these areas is surprisingly easy, even in mid winter.
My first experience in the mountains was when I about three years old. Surprisingly I remember the trip to Sequoia because it was so cold (Of course there are also 8mm movies so that may have a bit to do with it). It's probably my earliest childhood memory. During my formative years the annual family road trip to somewhere in the west was typically the highlight of year. We traveled extensively throughout the western United States and Canada but my favorite trips were always to Sequoia or Yosemite. My parents were not hikers and my natural curiosity kept me wondering what's around the bend? As I became old enough to set out on my own I cut my hiking and backpacking teeth in the San Gabriel Mountains. Somewhere along the way climbing and skiing crept into the picture. Soon I was traipsing all over the Sierra Nevada with various friends and coworkers. More recently I "discovered" the Colorado Plateau.
The photography developed with the desire to seek out adventure. Not long after that first trip I received my first camera, a hand me, hand me down Brownie. When I reached junior high one of my teachers further cultivated my interests in photography by asking if I was interested in shooting for the yearbook. I thought what a great way to get out of class on a regular basis. That was my introduction to 35mm photography. Looking back I cringe every time I look at those photos. Regardless, I soon owned my own Konica A1000 and went to town.
Initially the photography was more of the look at me see what I've done genre. Over time producing images that evoked the feelings of the environs became the priority. My main goal these days is capturing moments that have meaning to me and hopefully ignite curiosity in others, though I still get immense satisfaction when I hear someone say wow under their breath. I also look for images that supplement the written word for my articles and soon to be completed second book. My first book is a guide dealing with places to cross country ski in Southern California.
My personal photo stock is wide ranging. Mountain sports including hiking, backpacking, climbing, mountain biking, skiing, canoeing, white water rafting, and kayaking are all subjects covered as activities within landscapes as well as the natural world alone.
I also enjoy the discipline of photographing motor sports because of the unique challenges it presents.
If you are curious about other images I have to offer please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Find photos of the Colorado Plateau in Land of the Canyons, the Photo Trip USA landscape photography guide book.
Sunrise Bubbs Creek
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