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Thread: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monterey

  1. #1

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    LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monterey

    I will go on a trip to following places, San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monterey California and need suggestions for photogenic sites and equipment (5x7 or 4x5). Thanks! David

  2. #2
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monter

    When? Seasonal weather, traffic, and crowds have a lot to do with intelligent site selection. You'll probably receive a hundred different answers, and every one of the will be correct, depending. It also depends on your definition of "photogenic". Avoid Muir Woods like the plague unless it's a cold rainy winter day. There seem to be more tour buses than trees. But there a dozens of trails all around there just as photogenic, where solitude is easy to find. Likewise in the GGNRA : Golden Gate Bridge gawkers double and triple parked, elbowing one another, while five minutes away there are miles of coastline trails where you will encounter a few people, but not herds of them. Likewise, Pt Lobos south of Monterey. Go off-season weekdays, not in summer. Coastal highways are subject to landslides in Winter, so keep updated. The Napa/Sonoma area has been massively burned in portions, so expect a lot of truck activity cleanup and remodeling wise. Just take along whatever view camera equipment you're comfortable with, and can use intuitively. Lighting contrast in redwood groves can be extreme at times, so a black and white film with a long scale like TMY is recommended. SF itself isn't very camera-friendly downtown, but along the public areas, beaches, etc, no problem provided your tripod isn't blocking a path. Beware of slippery cliff edges. "Rock" along much of our coastline isn't solid; it's poorly consolidated mudstone in many places, and yet another person fatally slipped over a SF shore cliff edge this past weekend. There is an utter plague of car smash n' grab break-ins at popular tourist destinations in SF itself - thousands and thousands of such incidents each year now. They move fast, so don't leave anything of value in a car for even minutes unattended. Better yet, just buy a postcard of sights that have already been photographed eight trillion times, and look for something special elsewhere. There is no shortage of possibilities.

  3. #3

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    Re: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monter

    Will go there around this coming New Year time. Thanks for your descriptions and warnings.

  4. #4
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monter

    Sometimes Dec and Jan can be especially nice beach days at places like Pt Reyes, or for forest walks like the Bear Creek Trail. Less wind, crisp lighting, lots of wildlife, and less people. Just always have along a good raincoat, because conditions can change fast. It's quite windy today; so I might delay going out again until tomorrow, when rain is forecast. A waterproof darkcloth is also a good idea, plus good hiking shoes. But depending, some winter days actually seem like the warm season around here. It's warmer and calmer right now, even with all the wind, than a typical summer afternoon at my house. You could spend your whole photographic life just at Pt Reyes itself, and the vicinity; it's magical most of the year.

  5. #5

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    Re: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monter

    Point Reyes is on my list. Thanks!

  6. #6
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monter

    David, are you driving in or flying?
    sin eater

  7. #7

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    Re: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monter

    There is a Hostel inside the Point Reyes and it is really clean and quiet. Chimney Rock trail at Point Reyes has beautiful views. You could 1-2 days there.

  8. #8

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    Re: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monter

    Flying this time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tin Can View Post
    David, are you driving in or flying?

  9. #9
    Les
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    Re: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monter

    Plenty of beaches around (notable or not), Carmel Mission....and I'd check Carmel Valley Road. The mission may require entry fee (?), which was not the case when I was there. If you have enough time, slide down to Pfeiffer State PK for a sunset - not far from Monterey. Hmmm, forgot about 17mile Drive that offers more sea scenes and secluded beaches - there is a fee attached to that one.

  10. #10
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Re: LF photogenic sites in San Francisco, Napa Valley, Muir Woods, Santa Cruz, Monter

    I was going to suggest Highway 1 as it has magnificent driving and views.

    I drove it twice 45 years ago, with places to stop often enough. It just reopened.

    This story does not do it justice.

    https://www.visitcalifornia.com/road...ay-one-classic

    Quote Originally Posted by diversey View Post
    Flying this time.
    sin eater

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