Saturday, April 2, 2011

Reminiscences - Mirror Creek

I am back home in Oregon but may not be doing much photography for a while.  It is heavily overcast and raining a lot. 

Meanwhile, here is another of the reminiscences photos.  This is from an early visit to Yosemite. 

Mirror Lake is a small lake that was formed by a geologically recent rockslide that dammed Mirror Creek.  Ansel Adams had taken several photos there.  The high canyon walls to either side, and its location up a side branch from the main valley made this a location somewhat sheltered from the wind.  That sheltering often left the small lake with a mirror-smooth surface that reflected the granite walls surrounding it.

Once Yosemite opened to motor vehicle access, sand and grits were needed for the roads.  These were dredged from Mirror Lake.  Each year, the dredgings were replaced with a fresh load eroded from the surrounding peaks and washed into the lake, where they settled out, awaiting dredging anew for the winter.  This process preserved the lake, but was far from natural.  A newly-aware Park Service halted the dredging.

Since then, Mirror Lake has all but disappeared.  There is now a small pond in its place.

On my visit, I hiked as far upstream as was permitted, and spent the afternoon along Mirror Creek.  As the sun was starting to drop, I hiked down toward the shuttle bus stop, pausing often to look back.  At one point I noticed the yellow cliff face reflected in the water and the blue sky reflecting off the wet rocks.  I love the interplay of light and color, and that gave me this, one of my favorite shots.

No comments: