Bonsai Rock, Lake Tahoe [CA]

Bonsai Rock, Lake Tahoe [CA]

One of my favorite spots to shoot is Bonsai Rock on the east shoe of Lake Tahoe. Over the last year I have shot there a few times and each is different- rising water levels over last winter have changed the landscape of the area dramatically, making navigating a bit more tricky. On this night, my friend Dylan and I decided to make our way down to the rock at 2am on a moonless night. While the lack of light was perfect for my camera, our lack of headlamps that night made for an interesting adventure by the water. Needless to say, we escaped with dry clothes and a few nice photos. 

Donnor Bridge [Truckee, CA]

Donnor Bridge [Truckee, CA]

This shot from November of 2016 is one of my favorites. After skiing at night with a buddy we decided to take the long route home from Donner pass and drive over the Old 40 Bridge. With my buddy passed out in the passenger seat I decided to take the opportunity of clear skys to get a shot. Framing the shot took a few hours in the frigid cold, and without the ski gloves I happened to have on, I would have gotten frostbite long before the shot. 

Tioga Lake [Tioga Pass, CA]

Tioga Lake [Tioga Pass, CA]

Near the East entrance to Yosemite National Park lies Tioga Lake. Tioga is often overlooked by travelers because they are in such a hurry to see the valley. What most don't know is it is access to some of the only free camping in the area, and some of the best views as well. Setting up a tent it dusk after a day of traveling was tricky, but it inspired the shot you see. After some deliberation I placed my tent in a spot that would accent the star photo I was envisioning. Stayed up all night, watching the stars and and finally got the shot I was looking for around 3am. 

I shoot primarily with a Sony a7ii and various Rokinon glass and Hoya ND filters.

Ben Merrill

www.MerrillVisuals.com

@brmerrill

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