Yellowstone Lake

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Yellowstone Lake sits at the southern end of the Hayden Valley and the Yellowstone River drains into it.  It is a fairly large lake, about 12 x 15 miles, with about 180 miles of shoreline.  On a clear day its waters are a startling pure blue.

I found it to be an ideal subject to photograph, particularly in early morning.  I don’t consider myself to be a particularly good landscape photographer but I found the play of the early morning light on the water of the lake to be irresistible.  Each morning that we were there the lake would be covered with a thick layer of fog at dawn that rapidly burned off as the sun cleared the horizon. It made for fantastic patterns of light and shade and some very attractive colors.  I shot this first image, looking east across the lake, just at the moment that the sun cleared the horizon.

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As the sun got higher in the sky the colors changed dramatically.

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The fog became suffused with a purple tint.  The water was almost perfectly reflective because at daybreak there was no wind.

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I particularly enjoyed photographing this little islet a hundred yards or so off shore.

The first image made with a Canon 5DS-R, 18-35mm f4 L zoom IS lens @ 26mm, M setting, ISO 400, f11 @ 1/100.  The second and third images made with a Canon 5Diii, 100-400mm f4-5.6 ISII zoom lens+1.4x extender, @ 140 mm, aperture priority setting.  The second image shot at ISO 400, f7.1 @ 1/1250.  The third image shot at ISO 250, f7.1 @ 1/1600.

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