8x20, 12x30, 16x40, 20x50, 24x60, 29x72, 33.5x84, 38x96



Camera: Canham 8x10 Inch Metal Field Camera, 4x10 adapted

Lens: 150mm

Film: Fuji Provia 100F 4x10 Inch Transparency Film

Lake Tahoe Inversion, Pre-Dawn Glow


This is an image I've wanted to compose for years, but Mother Nature just wouldn't cooperate with my schedule. Fortunately, as we hit the right weather pattern for an inversion effect here in Lake Tahoe this winter, I was able to make the time to be in the right place at the right time. The patience and effort paid off.

Although not a physically demanding adventure, aside from dealing with extreme cold, it was quite an early excursion. I left my home in South Lake Tahoe several hours before sunrise and slowly drove the icy roads to the north end of the lake and up to a vista point along the Mount Rose Highway above Incline Village. Upon arrival, I "quickly" set up my 8x10 film camera by the light of my headlamp and waited for there to be enough ambient light to actually focus the beast. As a hint of light made composing and focussing possible, I decided to use the panoramic 4x10 inch film format, leaving much empty sky out of my composition. Now that I was set up, composed and ready, I chose not to wait for sunrise.

I decided to create a long exposure during the blue hour of light approximately 20 minutes before sunrise. As luck would have it, that was the winner! With the sea of cloud below filling the Basin, Lake Tahoe truly appeared to be "the Lake of the Sky". With the fingers of cloud reaching into the forest, snow covered mountains rising above, the pre-dawn glow of the heavens above made for a truly dreamlike scene. I had envisioned a unique image of Lake Tahoe during an inversion occurrence. The surreal glow of the pre-dawn sky that bathed the whole scene in cool color added the magic I was hoping for.