KingMidget's Ramblings

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Fun With A Camera

It’s been a few weeks since I’ve been to the American River to work on that other project of mine.  With a weekend relatively free of scheduled activities, I decided to head there this weekend, and with my younger son due to get up at 4:30 to head to school for an academic competition, I decided to get up at the same time and catch the sunrise somewhere along the American River.

I was going to head here.  It’s a spot just east of Sac State, right under the Howe Avenue Bridge.  I thought it would be a good place to get the sunrise reflecting off the river with little impact from the IMG_4896modern world.  No bridges, buildings, or much of anything other than the the sky, the water and the opposite riverbank.

I mentioned my plans to a colleague, who lives much closer to the river than I do.  He suggested instead a bluff on the northwestern edge of Lake Nimbus, suggesting that it provided quite a view.


I decided to follow his advice and being the whacko I am, I got there an hour before sunrise was due to arrive.  I didn’t want to miss it, you know.  Besides, any good sunrise lasts for quite awhile.  It’s beauty doesn’t hit at the designated moment, but instead, develops over time.

When I got there it was dark.  Lights from Folsom twinkled on the other side of the lake.  I tried to take some pictures of them.  Not very successfully.  Here’s the first one.  IMG_4787

It’s one of those things I have yet to figure out — the best way to take pictures when it is dark.  Of course, it would help if I had a tripod.  But I don’t.  I kept trying, resting the camera on my car, but when the shutter remains open for a second or two, it’s pretty hard to get the picture right.

I had a brainstorm while I struggled away with what to do until the sun began to cast its light on the world.








And ta-da, the moon.  This is what happens when it’s 6:30 in morning and I’m sleep deprived.


The first picture in this post?  The one where I originally planned on going was also taken this morning, about an hour after sunrise.  And for those too lazy to click over to my other blog, this is what I was looking for…


17 responses to “Fun With A Camera

  1. John Callaghan March 14, 2015 at 5:59 pm

    Nice pictures. What is Sac State?

  2. Carrie Rubin March 14, 2015 at 6:15 pm

    I’m so impressed you were up that early. As gorgeous as sunrises are, I’ve never been inclined to watch one all the way through. When I’m up before sunrise, I’m exercising. Hmm, maybe I should go jogging outside around that time. Two accomplishments at the same time.

    • kingmidget March 14, 2015 at 6:41 pm

      You should definitely take one of those runs outside every now and then. One of my best “sunrise” experiences was on a run a couple of years ago. I think I posted pictures of it here. For whatever reason I was up, the sun was coming up and I went for a run and all of a sudden there it was. The colors of the rainbow unfolding and evolving over the entire course of the run. I highly recommend taking one of those runs.

  3. Amy Reese March 14, 2015 at 6:28 pm

    The last one is a gorgeous shot. Wow! Totally worth it. Those others with the crazy lights are actually pretty cool. I have to say I was asleep, so thanks for sharing these. 🙂

  4. sknicholls March 14, 2015 at 6:32 pm

    Beautiful picture, Mark. Love the fun you had with the camera and the shutter open. City streets are fascinating when shot like that. I love the sunrise and like to get up early enough to put the boat in the water before sunrise. We live an hour away from the ocean and Greg likes to sleep in so that’s a rare moment for me.

    • kingmidget March 14, 2015 at 6:44 pm

      It’s those city street shots that gave me the idea. I’m with you on the sunrise … I’ve developed the unfortunate habit of waking up early while my wife sleeps for two or three more hours. So, when I do things like this … it offers a moment of solitude and navel gazing.

  5. Trent Lewin March 14, 2015 at 8:02 pm

    Looks like you nailed it at the end… and it was well worth it.

  6. Nurse Kelly March 15, 2015 at 9:42 am

    Your photos are beautiful. I have to be up really early to get my son to rowing practice on the river, and have been intending to get some shots while I’m down there. I’m usually in a fog at 5am, but you’ve inspired me to finally do it.

  7. Sally March 15, 2015 at 9:31 pm

    The image you were waiting for is beautiful! (But I’m liking the whimsical, sleep-deprived images too!)

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