Through the Letterbox

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Here we are again!

I first tried to take this photograph back in 2008, but discovered (as is so often the case) that the shot that had looked so good on the back of the camera did not live up to expectations on the computer. The main culprit was the wind, which had caused sufficient shake in the tripod to cause the shot to suffer from blur.

Not living locally, I wasn’t able to go back and have another go. Jump to January this year, and when I found myself driving by the Marin Headlands shortly before dusk, it seemed silly not to try the photo again! I’m much happier with the image quality this time round, and the Christmas lights at the Embarcadero Center are just an added bonus!

Annoyingly, taking this shot has got a little harder since 2008. Concerns about landslides caused Conzelman Road to be re-engineered in 2010, with the result that it’s no longer possible to pull over at this spot, as the road is relatively narrow and with metal barriers at the sides. This means that it’s necessary to park up and walk here. There is still room to set up a tripod between the barriers and the cliff edge. If you’re trying this, take care, especially around the cliff edge and when walking back in the dark!

It’s also worth mentioning that due to parallax, the spot to get this alignment is very small — a movement 10cm to the left or right is enough to ruin the effect, so get there early!

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