April Dawn

Early morning is a wonderful time of day. The air is fresh and brisk. Dew is on the grass. The colors in the sky can be dazzling. I seldom experience any of this beauty. I sleep through that magical time of day. Most of the time. If I happen to be up at that hour, it’s usually involuntary, having to get up for some reason, no noisy neighbors this time. Maybe it was a dream which I’ve forgotten that woke me. Usually, I sleep through dawn. If I happen to be up, and circumstances permit, I go back to bed.

This morning I happened to be up just as the sun was rising. I may have been half asleep, but I was awake enough to grab my camera when I saw the sun peeking over the top of the Cascade Mountains. I always keep the blinds to my slider open for that very reason. Sometimes the moon peeks in; sometimes the sun peeks in. I keep my camera handy for just such moments.

The last time I photographed a magnificent sunrise, the day turned drab. Today lived up to the promise of dawn.

This is the scene that caught my eye as I shuffled into the living area.
A few seconds later.
These photos were taken within the space of a minute or so.

I hadn’t put a robe on when I crawled out of bed. I hardly noticed the chill morning air as I concentrated on taking photos, but I had to open the slider to get some decent exposures. It was around 40F (4.4 C) so I didn’t linger very long.

Sometimes you get so busy taking pictures that you don’t even notice what your camera is seeing. I didn’t see the halo effect around the tree until I uploaded my photos.

After I photographed the rising sun, I turned southeast and made a couple of exposures of Rainier.

Our magnificent, eternally snow-covered monarch.

Some people feel closed in by mountains. I feel protected, even though I know this is a volcano that could erupt. Life if full of perils wherever you happen to live. There’s no point in worrying about what may happen in the hundred years. Just enjoy the splendor.

Crack of Dawn

Early morning is not my time of day. I’m a night owl. The crack of dawn makes me cranky. It used to be that I’d see dawn only in winter when I had to go to work and dawn arrived around eight, or on weekends when I stayed up very late or even all night. I come from a people of party animals. 

I’d have slept through this sunrise if it hadn’t been for neighbors waking me at half-past six by playing their music so loudly I could hear it in my bedroom, even while wearing earplugs. I called in a noise complaint and then went to sleep on the sofa, which is just a tad too short and a tad too narrow. Attempting to sleep on one shoulder was a literal pain. Tension was no doubt a large factor. I’ve slept comfortably on the couch before. When I gave up and got up to go to bed, the sun was rising later than yesterday, because it was the first morning of daylight savings time. Dawn light seeped through the blinds, tinting the opposite wall pale orange. I grabbed my camera and took this photo. Got a blurry one of Rainier, too. Sleepy eyes aren’t good for focusing.

This glorious dawn turned into an overcast day, with a sky as bland and white as paper. I should probably be glad that the neighbors woke me.

The Sun Will Rise

Full many a glorious morning have I seen
Flatter the mountaintops with sovereign eye,
Kissing with golden face the meadows green,
Gilding pale streams with heavenly alchemy.

~ William Shakespeare, Sonnet 33
Not a comet, the sun.

When you see mornings like this, it’s hard to believe that the sun will ever come out again. Sometimes it doesn’t. The clouds close in again and the day stays gray.

There’s a mountain back there, to the tree’s right. It points toward Mount Rainier, as if to assure us that it’s still there, even though we can’t see it.

See? There it is. The Mountain.

Even the heaviest clouds will eventually lift and look beautiful while doing so.

The Mountain wearing a shawl of clouds.

In winter the sun rises from behind Rainier’s right (south) shoulder. Rainier is so massive that it creates its own weather system. It snags clouds coming in from the Pacific Ocean, which results in great amounts of rain and snow. It often hides behind clouds or fog. Visitors frequently leave disappointed. The season makes no difference. The Mountain appears when it appears. Being on its flank makes no difference. It still conceals itself in the clouds.

January sunrise.

As the Northern Hemisphere starts to tilt toward the sun, it comes around from behind Rainier and rises behind the Cascade Range.

Even if you cover the whole world with darkness, you can never stop the sun from rising.     

~ Debasish Mridha