The summer has been surprisingly nice. Generally smoke free and temperatures haven’t been too high on a consistent basis. It hasn’t been perfect but it has been nice. However, the latter half of August saw some higher temps and cloudless skies, which always makes photographing the mountain a bit more of a challenge.
However, as the month came to an end, some nicer weather rolled through. We had some pretty clouds, some reasonable temps and a general ease seemed to come over the area. At times the clouds weren’t active over the mountain but they still yielded beautiful sunsets in the Shasta Valley. Parks Peak, in the southwest corner of the valley is often the site of some gorgeous sunsets and this proved to be the case this time.
Finally, conditions pushed the clouds over towards Mount Shasta and we had two consecutive sunsets over the mountain that were notably scenic. The first I captured from the Old Ski Bowl, where I was spending time with family I had not seen in a long time. They were awed by the beauty of the setting and the conditions at sunset.
The last bit of sunlight hits Sargents Ridge. The lupine and rabbit brush are explosive at that elevation now.
A little smoke filled the Sacramento River canyon while smoke from larger fires to the south helped distinguish the layers of ridges in the warm glow of the setting sun.
The next night my wife and I had dinner and, noting the conditions, headed up toward Castle Lake to the vista and the old nordic center. We enjoyed a spectacular sunset with glorious clouds in the sky.
Even though Mount Shasta had little snow on its western flanks, the mountain was still exceedingly beautiful in the low angle light. It was a fantastic way to close out a great evening.
Finally the sun set and the mountain glowed purple for a bit before going dark. The clouds lingered until around 4am the next morning and there hasn’t been a single one in the sky since. A little smoke has crept in, mostly from the Rum Creek Fire in Oregon (I think). Temperatures are hot now and will be for another few days before they start to moderate, hopefully beginning the glorious slide into Fall weather. I can’t wait!