Big Sur 2022

Big Sur 2022

This winter I payed my second visit to the Big Sur section of the California Coast, although to be truthful, it was the first time actually getting up to Big Sur. My previous trip, in 2017 (wow, can’t believe it was 5 years ago) was affected by rain and mudslides. As a result I spent my time exploring from Moro Bay to Ragged Point. You can read about that trip in my earlier post, “Best laid plans“.

On this trip I stayed in the heart of the Big Sur area, at the Big Sur Lodge in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. It is an older property but very nicely kept up. The rooms, located in cabins, are uphill from the main lodge. Accommodation is very basic with no TV, phone or internet. Cell reception is spotty. Their website makes all this clear so you know before you go. With that said, the rooms are very comfortable and clean.

My first morning started before dawn with a drive up to photograph Point Sur Lighthouse. It was pretty cloudy and misty so there was no real sunrise. Still, I think I got a pretty nice shot.

Point Sur Lighthouse

As I was packing up to leave, the mist turned to light rain. A few minutes later it stopped and a beautiful rainbow appeared. I had to scramble to get down the road a bit to capture this image. The rainbow was already starting to fade when I got to a spot where it lined up with the lighthouse.

Most of the rest of that day and the next morning were spent in search of seascapes. A problem with much of this coastline is that you are looking down at the water from some height, which does affect the perspective in your photo. There are a few areas, though, where you can get down close to or at water level.

In these images I wanted to capture the power and motion of the waves. In the first one, I like the addition of the two gulls in the foreground.

The following series is a bit more abstract presentation. I tried to give a sense of motion in these images.

There are a few waterfalls along this section of coast. Pfeiffer Falls is located at the end of a nice little hike in Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park. It didn’t have a lot of water flowing but was still pretty. McWay Falls, located in Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park is one of only two waterfalls on the California Coast that flows directly into the ocean. I caught some gorgeous late afternoon light on the falls.

Pfeiffer Falls
McWay Falls

The final image above was just a little waterfall I found on a hike down to a beach.

On one of the beaches I visited, I found an incredible display of little sand trees or sand feathers, depending on how you look at them. These are patterns in the sand left behind as a wave recedes. I have seen them on other beaches but this particular beach probably had one of the best displays I’ve found. I easily spent about an hour and a half photographing them, and could have stayed longer.

Of course not visit to the Big Sur area would be complete without a shot of Bixby Bridge. As there are probably tens of thousands of photos of it in existence, I didn’t spend a lot of time there. It is an impressive structure, but I was more interested in the other “stuff” I found.

Bixby Bridge

This part of the California Coast definitely warrants a return visit!

If you are new to my blog, or haven’t yet visited my photo gallery, please drop in by clicking on the “Photo Gallery” tab at the top of the page or just go to I will shortly be updating it with my favourite images from the winter months, so check back regularly. Or even better, while you are there sign up for my newsletter. I won’t bombard you with emails, only a quarterly newsletter outlining recent updates.

And I always welcome your comments on either my blog or my photo gallery.

This entry was posted in California, Landscape Photography, Photography, Seascapes, Travel, waterfalls and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Big Sur 2022

  1. Pingback: Big Sur 2023 | Wind At Your Back

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