This view has been on “my list” for more than 10 years. Its just never worked out, for one reason or another. This year I was determined to make it happen. And after hunkering down under a large spruce to wait out a 30 minute snow/sleet squall, I hiked up the final ridge 15 minutes before sunset. The panorama was even better than I’d envisioned, but the light was cloud-bound, dull and gray. Then as the sun began to set, it broke under the cloud layer spreading unimaginable light across the landscape.
I had 2 minutes to make images before the sun slipped below the horizon and low clouds. And everything faded back to gray. I was still awestruck as I packed up my gear, not wanting to leave the moment behind. But I eventually turned my back and dropped off the ridge into the wet, darkening forest.
I felt so lucky to have experienced such a magnificent scene, and happy to have an image to share and remember it by.
Addendum: A year later I discovered that my friend Matt Payne was here on this very same night, for the very first time. He was on a similar outcrop about 1/4 mile west of me. Neither of us knew until talking about it later, and sharing images. Quite the coincidence.