About the Site

Introduction

Of mountain ranges in the world, perhaps none has received as much attention in art as well as writing as the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. And not without reason. Though only half as high as the Himalayas and only a fraction of the length of the Andes, the Sierra Nevada packs more diversity and more superlatives into its 400 miles length than any other mountain range on earth.

On their eastern base, the Sierra rises 10,000 ft. (3,050m) in less than six miles. Precipitation in the Sierra varies from less than ten inches (4cm) per year to over 80 inches (32cm). Snow depths in the higher parts of the range commonly exceed 20 ft. (6m) during the winter. While sweltering in 100°F (38°C) temperatures in the Owens Valley, you can gaze on the eternal snows of glaciers only a few miles away. Vegetation in the range varies from pastoral oak woodlands to dense montane forests to cathedral-like groves of giant sequoias to barren alpine expanses to dry desert scrub - all of which can be viewed in an afternoon's drive.

Yosemite Valley alone is full of superlatives. Seven notable waterfalls, the 4,800 ft. (1,460m) high monolith of Half Dome, towering El Capitan, Sentinel Rock, Glacier Point...the list goes on.

But it isn't the superlatives and numbers that draw so much attention to the range. Rather, it's the sublime and awesome beauty of the mountains, the forests, the canyons and the rivers than draw people.

In this site, I attempt to demonstrate both the diversity and beauty of the Sierran landscape through photographs and maps. The photos are my personal expression of the landscape. The maps present a more objective look at the lay of the land.

Photographer

I first began seriously taking photographs when I was 17, at the time doing mostly sports photography. I've been engaged in serious landscape photography since I lived in Tuolumne City (near Yosemite National Park) and wanted to capture some of the beauty of the country.

I currently live in Paradise, in the Sierra foothills north of Sacramento.

More photographs from all over California can be found at my main photography site: www.adunnphotography.com

Equipment

Many photographers are obsessed by equipment, but I place more emphasis on the vision of the photographer, not the equipment used to capture the image. I recently moved from 35mm to medium format. Though most of the work on this site was shot in 35mm, everything posted since February 2003 was taken with a Mamiya 645 Pro.

Bodies Mamiya 645 Pro
Pro AE Prism Viewfinder
Pro Power Grip 2
Lenses

Mamiya 35mm f/3.5
Mamiya 45mm f/2.8
Mamiya 80mm f2.8
Mamiya 55-105mm f/4.5 Zoom
Mamiya 105-210mm f/4.5 Zoom
Mamiya 500mm f/8 Reflex Telephoto
Mamiya 500mm f5.6 Telephoto

Tripods Manfrotto 3021BPro w/ Bogen 488 ball head and quick release

The Photographs

I'm often asked if I digitally boost the color in my images or otherwise manipulate my photos. While I may do a range of standard darkroom adjustments (mostly adjusting brightness levels), I rarely manipulate the color to any degree. The high saturation of my images results from several factors:

All older images were scanned from negatives or slides using a Nikon Coolscan IV ED and edited in Adobe Photoshop 7 for publication on the web. Newer images (since February 2003) were scanned using a Nikon Super Coolscan 8000 ED.