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Archive 2013 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports
  
 
dswiger
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


OK, this isn't a help-me thread.
I already know where I'm going and just made reservations in Bishop, straddling Sep/Oct (9/29 to 10/4)
Its been three years and had to pick the dates.
Any body else heading up around then?

Here are a few reminders, in case you need them






























Dan

Edited by JimFox on Sep 28, 2013 at 01:25 AM · View previous versions



Sep 06, 2013 at 05:23 AM
pramitmanna
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


Dan,
I probably need some help. I am planning to go to Bridgeport/June lake area in early october. However, I will only have a weekend to shoot. Can you suggest me some locations around that area? Help is appreciated.
btw great shots.
-Pramit



Sep 06, 2013 at 06:37 AM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


I'm almost certain to be up there at various times, though my plans remain loose still.

Dan



Sep 06, 2013 at 07:16 AM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


pramitmanna wrote:
Dan,
I probably need some help. I am planning to go to Bridgeport/June lake area in early october. However, I will only have a weekend to shoot. Can you suggest me some locations around that area? Help is appreciated.
btw great shots.
-Pramit


Pramit, and others:

A few years back I wrote an article about photographing fall color in the eastern Sierra, and I have updated it annually since then: http://www.gdanmitchell.com/2009/09/02/sierra-nevada-fall-color-season-coming-sooner-than-you-think

I prefer to not list a grove-by-grove guide to where to shoot, for reasons I've written about here before. However, if you are new to shooting the Sierra aspen color, you might find some useful information in there. Where to look between Bridgeport and June Lake depends somewhat on exactly how the color evolves, when you are there relative to that process, and how much exploring you want to do. A few general hints for this broad area:

- Conway Summit, along 395 at the top of the rise north of Lee Vining provides expansive views that often include lots of aspen color and which may give you some ideas for exploration.

- The "June Lake Loop" passes a lot of beautiful aspen trees, and is a popular area for aspen photography.

- A number of side canyons on the east side of the Sierra hold many aspen trees, and good color can often be found in them.

Happy hunting!

Dan



Sep 06, 2013 at 05:44 PM
bschmalz
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


I just posted up this little guide for the Bishop area.

http://calitrails.com/2013/09/05/bishop-fall-color-guide-a-morning-in-paradise/

I am hoping to get up for a backpacking trip around the end of September in the Eastern Sierra, hopefully the colors work out!




Sep 06, 2013 at 06:24 PM
Jo Dilbeck
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


Sometimes I really hate my job that keeps me desk bound the first two weeks of any month. So, the "peak" color time of the first part of October just never works for me, I have to go early (can't this year due to other committments) or late, which is what I'm contemplating for Oct 23rd arrival (maybe Oct 16). Having never been there, but lusting after that fall color, I'm hoping there will be some smidgen of color left somewhere at that time!

Jo



Sep 06, 2013 at 06:41 PM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


October 23 is quite late for eastern Sierra aspen color. Personally, I would tend to not go that late for this purpose, though a friend of mine who is a well-known Sierra photographer took issue with me a year or two ago when I suggested that the prime time is the first two weeks of October - he pointed out that he loves to search out larger, low elevation aspens in the third week of the month. (So the 16th might work... but I'm less optimistic about the 23rd.)

There are other lowland trees east of the Sierra that can possibly have later color, including cottonwoods, but this won't be the same thing. A week later, around Halloween, there can be some wonderful (non-aspen) color in Yosemite Valley.

Can you sneak away for a weekend a bit earlier? ;-)

Dan



Sep 06, 2013 at 07:00 PM
JimFox
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


Jo Dilbeck wrote:
Sometimes I really hate my job that keeps me desk bound the first two weeks of any month. So, the "peak" color time of the first part of October just never works for me, I have to go early (can't this year due to other committments) or late, which is what I'm contemplating for Oct 23rd arrival (maybe Oct 16). Having never been there, but lusting after that fall color, I'm hoping there will be some smidgen of color left somewhere at that time!

Jo


Hey Jo,

Of course every year is different, but I have gotten great shots at the end of Sept in the Eastern Sierra. How about going up there the last week in Sept then? Ideally if you can straddle even 1 or 2 days into Oct that would be ideal. But you are better off going the end of Sept than the 3rd week in Oct...

Jim



Sep 06, 2013 at 08:38 PM
JimFox
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


bschmalz wrote:
I just posted up this little guide for the Bishop area.

http://calitrails.com/2013/09/05/bishop-fall-color-guide-a-morning-in-paradise/

I am hoping to get up for a backpacking trip around the end of September in the Eastern Sierra, hopefully the colors work out!



That is a very nice piece you did there. Especially for someone who hasn't been there before it would be a great guide. The location information in it is great, as evidenced by the tour bus of people at the one location, there is nothing in these locations to keep secret or be elusive as it's all out there anyway. Might as well provide an enjoyable time to those who read your guide without the frustration of having to guess or worse getting lost.

Jim



Sep 06, 2013 at 08:46 PM
JimFox
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


Hey Dan,

The Eastern Sierra is one cool place for fall color. I might be there myself. I have been planning on shooting fall colors in Colorado again, but I have been spending a lot of time there, so it might be a nice change to shoot back in the old stomping grounds in the Eastern Sierra... I will let you know if I end up there, it would be fun to meet up and shoot.

Jim



Sep 06, 2013 at 08:48 PM
 

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D. von Briesen
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


October 21 . . .







October 25 . . .






October 20 . . .






Not to hijack an Eastern Sierra thread, but third week October is traditionally peak for West Fork, Oak Creek in Sedona, Arizona. Just sayin' . . . !!



Sep 06, 2013 at 09:07 PM
dswiger
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


D. von Briesen wrote:
Not to hijack an Eastern Sierra thread, but third week October is traditionally peak for West Fork, Oak Creek in Sedona, Arizona. Just sayin' . . . !!

No problem, definitely on topic!
"Eastern Sierra" is only the conversation starter.

Definitely want to explore the SW in a few years when the in-laws move to Sedona.

Dan



Sep 06, 2013 at 09:29 PM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


JimFox wrote:
Hey Jo,

Of course every year is different, but I have gotten great shots at the end of Sept in the Eastern Sierra. How about going up there the last week in Sept then? Ideally if you can straddle even 1 or 2 days into Oct that would be ideal. But you are better off going the end of Sept than the 3rd week in Oct...

Jim


There some preliminary indications that this strategy might work better this year than most other years. We know that the plant life is suffering from two years of serious drought. We also know that last years aspen color arrived a bit earlier than usual. There are some reports already of early color, and I saw some earlier-than-normal signs several weeks ago. (Though be cautious - such optimistic reports surface every year!).

If you go early, be prepared to go a bit higher and perhaps even hike up to some of the color.

JimFox wrote:
Hey Dan,

The Eastern Sierra is one cool place for fall color. I might be there myself. I have been planning on shooting fall colors in Colorado again, but I have been spending a lot of time there, so it might be a nice change to shoot back in the old stomping grounds in the Eastern Sierra... I will let you know if I end up there, it would be fun to meet up and shoot.

Jim


Let's stay in touch. I'm shooting elsewhere in the Sierra backcountry during a chunk of the middle of the month, but around the last week of September my plans for east side fall color will likely coalesce.

D. von Briesen wrote:
October 21 . . .

... Not to hijack an Eastern Sierra thread, but third week October is traditionally peak for West Fork, Oak Creek in Sedona, Arizona. Just sayin' . . . !!


You scared me there for a second. I've spent decades in the Sierra and I was wondering how I might have missed the sandstone canyons filled with cottonwoods, oaks, maples... ;-)

I had one of my best fall color experiences last year, when I spent virtually all of October in Utah - aspens near the beginning of the month and then the sandstone country, canyons, cottonwoods later on. I'm soooo tempted to go back, but I think I'll probably stay in California this season.

Dan



Sep 06, 2013 at 09:33 PM
WAYCOOL
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


I was thinking of going back to GYNP but just spent most of my ready cash on a new to me Yamaha Vmax so The Sierras may be the place to go again.


Sep 07, 2013 at 06:49 AM
Tim Brooks
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


I know it's too early for aspens, but are there other tree species in the eastern Sierra that might be turning in the next few weeks? I'll be in the area from the 15th to the 27th. Hopefully I can find some color. Also wouldn't mind meeting up to shoot some, drink beer, tell lies...

Tim



Sep 09, 2013 at 11:38 PM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


Tim, if you look around carefully, especially up high, you will likely be able to find some scattered aspen color by the end of your visit - maybe earlier.

You can also look for other sources of fall-like color - the corn lily plants that keel over and turn yellow-gold, certain bushes that start to change to red or gold, etc.

Dan



Sep 09, 2013 at 11:50 PM
Tim Brooks
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


Thanks Dan. I plan on doing a bunch of day hikes along the crest. Folks say the area around Saddlebag Lake is a good area to start. There have been a few threads during the last few months where folks have made some great location suggestions, your website included.
Tim



Sep 10, 2013 at 12:08 AM
Timmeh
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


My wife gets to go shoot fall color, but I will be tied to work. Maybe I'll have a chance sometime in the next decade. Jealous...

Tim



Sep 10, 2013 at 01:22 AM
gdanmitchell
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


Tim Brooks wrote:
Thanks Dan. I plan on doing a bunch of day hikes along the crest. Folks say the area around Saddlebag Lake is a good area to start. There have been a few threads during the last few months where folks have made some great location suggestions, your website included.
Tim


Saddlebag can be good - I haven't shot fall color there, but beyond Saddlebag is the 20 Lakes Basin area, full of wonderful little bits of intimate terrain.

I often see some rather early color along the upper reaches of Lee Vining Canyon where the road turns back across the upper canyon wall to head toward Ellery Lake.

Last year I saw some very early color way up in McGee Canyon - far enough up that I had to hike to get to it.

Dan



Sep 10, 2013 at 03:12 AM
scraptag
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Eastern Sierra Fall Color Reports


I say we get make it a field trip, and we all go!


Sep 10, 2013 at 05:51 AM
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