Convict Lake, California, USA by Wanda Parsons

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Picture Story

Traveling to California in mid-October, I thought it would be a beautiful place to photograph the golden aspens. I was a little disappointed that the fall color was just not as dramatic in the Mammoth Lakes region, but did a google search which led me to a local photography club that had just that morning visited Convict Lake, and there were some beautiful photos of golden aspens. So we headed to the lake around 4pm and walked the trail that looped around the lake, stopping to photograph along the way. I was not disappointed and could have gone home happy. But we decided to wait for sunset.

The sunset, was not dramatic, very little color to the sky. There was one other hopeful photographer next to me. She left disappointed in the sunset and I stayed. This photo was a long exposure taken after the sun disappeared behind the mountain. The light trails on the left were from a road construction crew and there was a flash of light occasionally on the opposite side of the lake, where some hikers were making their way around the trail. On a side note, there were many critters out after dark. I watched as a family of raccoons practically walked right up to me. I heard cries in the not so far distance, and later learned a mountain lion was spotted by the road construction crew drinking from the lake, just 200 ft or so from where I stood. Also, the other photographer that I met, was telling me she was there for sunrise, but spotted a momma bear and her cub and decided not to venture out. It was a memorable experience for sure.

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