Ancient Bristlecone Pines

Picture of the Month – July 2004

On the way back from a photography convention in Las Vegas, Lori and I stopped at the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest in the White Mountains. I first learned of these knarly trees during a seminar with Galen Rowell. Unfortunately, due to a late snow we weren’t able to go photograph them. Two other trips to the eastern Sierras also resulted in weather problems for getting access. So I figured the end of July should be ok to finally see them.

We planned to photograph the sunset in the Patriarch Grove area, but heavy clouds destroyed the light. On the way back down the mountain, the sun broke through the clouds so we parked in one of the viewpoints. First I photographed some of the pines being lit with the warm late afternoon sunlight, but soon the show became the sky itself. This photograph was my favorite from the spectacular sunset that we didn’t expect.

Ancient Bristlecone Pines

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