Sunset on the Sunrise Highway II

I drove back out to the Sunrise Highway yesterday afternoon in plenty of time for me to search for possible locations for more photos, and it didn’t look all that promising because of the summer haze hanging over the mountains and desert.

I stumbled across this view from a little pull-off beside the highway, and I thought, “What the heck. I’m here. Let’s take an shot or two and see what happens.” I wasn’t holding out much hope, so I was pleasantly surprised with how this turned out.

This is likely a much better winter location with the setting sun illuminating more of the face of the mountains in the middle of the photo and hopefully less haze. There may even be some snow on the distant mountains (I’m at about 5,000 feet / 1524 meters elevation here).

I’ve added a new page to this website where you can check out a map of the locations of where I’ve taken my photos: Locations. Check it out. I’ll add photo locations to the map going forward and I’ll slowly retroactively add the locations of some of the other photos as well. (We don’t have rainy days in San Diego for rainy day projects, so I guess I’ll just have to add them on laundry day.)

Technical Info

This photo is actually seven photos stitched together into a panorama. (Putting it together just about killed my 7+ year-old computer! The finished raw file is 241 MB!) You can pixel peep at the full resolution image here.

Lens: 70-200 mm, f/2.8 L IS II USM
Focal Length: 105 mm
Shutter: 1/125
Aperture: f/16
ISO: 100

2 responses to “Sunset on the Sunrise Highway II”

  1. Great shot! If you have a current version of Lightroom or photoshop, you might want to try the dehaze filter.

    1. Hi Jim. Thanks! Yep. I applied a +15 dehaze filter to the image and that’s what you see. I went back into the file and bumped the dehaze up to about +35-40, and beyond that, the image begins to look a little too processed.

      I was actually surprised at how clear the image came out because, in person, the haze was quite strong. In fact, just out of frame to the left, the sun was setting over a valley where the haze almost looked like a light fog.

      I’ve been using Lightroom for about 10 months now, and I’m still trying to figure out the balance that I want to achieve in processing my images. One thing I can do, however, is slow down and not publish it immediately. Let it sit over night (or for a day or two), and then come back to it to say, “Yep. This is good to go.”

      In my mind, I want people to stand in the same place that I did and NOT say, “This doesn’t look anything like the photo we saw,” because I’ve taken the processing too far.

      I do appreciate the feedback and tips. We’re never too old to learn and improve.


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