Blue Thaw

Hi All,
Just returned from a brief trip into the High Sierra. This past winter was a high snowpack year and while it is melting fast, there is still a very substantial amount snow remaining. Most of the high lakes are just beginning to thaw. I was attracted to the shapes and colors of this melt water and ventured as far out on the ice as I felt was safe trying to line up the peak in the background. Appreciate any/all comments, suggestions. Thanks


Dave, I love the sky and the golden light striking the peaks. It’s also really nice that you included a fair portion of your tenuous footing in the FG, adds to the scale and the sense of space. Also that light overcast is a fine component. This all comes together as a truly wonderful image that you can be proud of.

Lovely scene. I like the color gradation from the cool foreground up to the warmer peaks and sky.

Great photo! I love that delicate warm light brushing to tops of the peaks. Great contrast and tone control there. I also love the hint of magenta light reflected from the sky in the snow.

Nice work, Dave. At first glance I thought the scene looked a little cut off on the left, but upon further contemplation, I think it fits together nicely.

Dave, This is really nice! The light on the mountain top looks great, the winding river works great in this comp and the magenta color from the sky reflected on the snow is especially nice.

Really beautiful work Dave, I love this as presented. The light in the sky and on the mountain is obviously gorgeous, but I love the aqua color in the melt water too. I also like the magenta and aqua color on the snow, the reflected light from above mixes nicely with the snow. You had spectacular conditions, and took full advantage of them.

Beautiful, Dave!! I might play with pulling some of the red out of the foreground snow, but not sure if it would be an improvement without seeing it. Not a biggie, though. Great image from your trip.

Dave, this looks great. I love the leading line of the open water with it’s reflections, the color in the sky makes a great complement to the starkness of the snow and the mountain.

Nice grand landscape. Really well composed. I like the upper part particularly. I thought that the snowy base at the bottom was the weakest part but if you crop it the composition is significantly worse. Looks as though it belongs in a Sierra Club calendar.

Very nice light, Dave! I am with @Igor_Doncov here. I really like the upper part and I am not too crazy about the foreground but you need it as a support to the image. I am getting a little antsy for my trip in two weeks: Trying to go up to Granite Bear Pass and Italy Pass. How was the snow condition at 12,000 ft?

This is a really beautiful scene. Nicely seen and composed. So much here to like. The use of the water in the foreground as a leading line is great and your efforts to get to this location paid off.

I studied this image and pulled it into PS. I played with a couple of things that kept pulling on me. One was a really minor one that the sky on the right just above the mountains seemed a bit more cyan rather than blue. The other was I wondered what a bit more light on the snow, water and a touch on the rock in the middle would look like. Played a bit and came up with this. Minor change, but for me even stronger.

Very nice image.

This is outstanding, Dave. I am particularly enjoying the combination of warm and cool tones throughout this High Sierra scene. The light in the lower 2/3rd’s; while subtle and soft; compliments the more dramatic light on the upper 1/3rd beautifully. I think the FG snow and melt water draws me into the scene nicely. Great work!

Just gorgeous Dave. I like this just as presented - although of course there’s room to tweak the colors if you chose to do so - but nothing wrong or out of place. I like the mix of warm and cool colors throughout. I especially like the aquas in the water and just the waterway, melting snow in general. Very cool.

And for no other reason than my personal bias against the long, digital verticals… I could see cropping a little off the sky and shaving a little off the bottom. The color in the sky/clouds is beautiful, but I think just an accent to your High Sierra scene and so a little crop could be tolerated. But that’s just me.

I’m sure you were just chomping at the bit to get to the high country this year! Looking forward to many more images as the summer progresses.


@Keith_Bauer, Thanks for taking the time to rework. This is very helpful. I already edited to lighten the fore/mid ground and do prefer.

@Bill_Leggett, @Bonnie_Lampley, @Sean_Bagshaw, @Michael_Lowe, @Nick_Bristol, @Ed_McGuirk, @Harley_Goldman, @Mark_Seaver, @Igor_Doncov, @Ed_Lowe, @Lon_Overacker Thanks for your comments and thoughts. Most appreciated.

@Adhika_Lie, As of right now you’re looking at close to 100% snow cover above ~10,500-11k. Granite Park should be beautiful (and snowy) as you wind up to Italy Pass. I would plan on bringing an ice ax, crampons/microspikes.

Really love this shot Dave. Especially the redo that brightens every thing up. I can see why this caught your attention, especially the the blue S curved stream.

Oh my! Love this in so many ways :raised_hands: the way the stream meanders and leads to the mountains​:raised_hands: the colores :raised_hands: the alpine glow :raised_hands: the Eastern Sierra :raised_hands:… OK… I love your work and this is another beauty!!!