Siwash Rock Silhouette

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Another day of steady rain in Vancouver again came to an end with some signs of clearer skies to the west. I was unusually organised, and had decided to head to Siwash Rock on the Stanley Park Seawall in surprisingly good time.

According to legend, Siwash Rock is the transformed spirit of an unselfish man, who was preserved in this way to honour him. Geologically, it is a basalt stack that was formed many millions of years ago by volcanic activity, and is the only such sea stack in the Vancouver area.

I stopped off at Third Beach to take some beach shots about an hour before sunset, and then walked the short distance on to the rock, just as the sun came out from behind the clouds. However, at this time the light was so strong and harsh that I wasn’t able to get anything usable photographically. Additionally, my lens kept gathering water vapour, there was so much dampness in the air.

Patience was a virtue in this case, and I hung around waiting out the remaining half hour until sunset. About 15 minutes before sunset, the sun had passed behind the bank of cloud on the horizon, and instead of searing the camera’s sensor, was lighting up some of the higher clouds. Unfortunately there was still a big, heavy, low bank of cloud covering most of the sky with a solid grey, but a couple of minutes later, a gap appeared in the low cloud, allowing me to see through to the sunlit clouds above. I grabbed this shot of the rock in silhouette with the wonderful sunset colours and beautiful cloud patterns.

Set up as usual with my tripod, I seemed to act as somewhat of a photographic mile-marker at this point on the seawall — thirty or forty joggers and cyclists must have gone past me, come to a halt a few metres on, and taken out their smartphones to take a shot! (Of the rock, that is, not of me… I think!)

golden hour seascape stanley park sunset vancouver
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