Carrizo Sunset!

Location: Four Mile Beach, Santa Cruz 
Time: Midnight
EXIF: Canon EOS 7D | EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM | 25mm | f/16 | 2s | ISO 3200

As I have mentioned numerous times before, I am so glad I got into Landscape Photography. More importantly, I am so glad I am part of a Photography community. Oh! The places I have visited in the last year and half. I didn’t even know a majority of them even existed. One such place is the Carrizo Plains National Monument.

My trip to Carrizo with my friends was quite fruitful. I have never seen anything like Carrizo before. I was lucky to visit during a year that had what’s called the super-bloom. To be honest, had I got a week or two earlier, it would have been even more spectacular as I would have seen lot more colors – yellows, purples, and oranges. By the time I went, it was a bit late and it was primarily yellows. Still, one of the most spectacular things I have seen. Sea of flowers everywhere you turn; what’s not to like.

As it so happened, there was Meetup at Carrizo the same day we were planning to be there. We love the organizer so we decided to join the Meetup. The good news is that we didn’t have to plan our day; the organizer knew what spots to take us to. The bad news, it’s exactly that. We were stuck to places that the organizer took us to. Believe me, every single spot the organizer took us to were breathtaking. However, it did restrict us from exploring certain spots or spend more time on certain spots.

After a long hike at one of the locations, it was time to decide what to do for Sunset. The organizer had plans to take to group to a specific location for Sunset. However, it didn’t quite workout. There were more than 2 dozen people in the group and with such a large group, it was impossible to gather everyone to get to the next spot. The group cooperated very well throughout the day until the last spot. Everyone became tired and took their sweet time.

Sun was setting fast and a good number didn’t get back from the hike. The organizer waited and waited but lost his patience. So, he asked whoever was there to head out and see if you we can capture the Sunset. The moment we heard that, we took off. We were scrambling to find a good spot to shoot the Sunset. We didn’t find a single spot to shoot the Sunset and the colors were fading fast. We decided to go to a known location rather than try to find a new spot.

So we went back to a spot that we went in the afternoon. By the time we got to the location, it was a bit late. The Sun was already behind the horizon but there was a little bit of color left. I didn’t really spend a lot time thinking about the comp. I just setup my tripod and started shooting.

I went with a slightly longer exposure to capture as much light as I could. I am happy that I got some shot with some color. Come to think of it, we should have either stayed where we were to capture the Sunset or take off right after we got down from our hike. Oh well! Too late to think about what we could have or should have done. It was a great trip, nevertheless.

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