Marin County Sunset

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One of my San Francisco photo excursions was to the Golden Gate National Recreation Area in the Marin Headlands, just north of San Francisco across the Golden Gate Bridge.

I was planning on shooting the city at dusk, and wanted to try a viewpoint that I hadn’t used before, so I decided to hike up the Coastal Trail to Slacker Hill, a viewpoint overlooking the bridge and the city, in time for the blue hour.

However, as I hiked up the steep trail, the haze in the valley below started to catch and reflect the light of the setting sun, and I had to stop and photograph the sunset. Pushing a short way off the trail into the bushes, and keeping a careful eye out for rattlesnakes, I set up to take this shot as the sun inched towards the horizon.

It was amazing to be standing on the side of a completely deserted hill, looking out over such a beautiful landscape, while just 3 miles behind me was the busy city of San Francisco. I did continue my hike up to the top of Slacker Hill to photograph the city at the blue hour, but was very pleased that I was in the right place to photograph this much more peaceful scene at sunset.

This photo consists of two exposures taken at 27mm, ISO 100, f/16, with shutter speeds of 1/13th of a second and 1/50th of a second, manually blended together using luminosity masking.

california golden hour sunset
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