Yosemite is one of my three favorite spots in all of California. If you have been there, you no doubt have the memories I do of the first time you drive through that tunnel and see Yosemite Valley. It will be forever imprinted on my mind, and over the years, I have had the opportunity to visit many times. The beauty is awe-inspiring everywhere you look. Whether it’s the summer or the winter, and whether you are camping or staying at the Ahwahnee, there is no wrong way to experience Yosemite. I could write hundreds of posts on Yosemite, but this post is on the view you can get from Glacier Point. This post is from 2012, I have a lot more recent posts on Yosemite here.
What makes Glacier Point stand out from other parts of Yosemite is that it is effortless to drive your car to this area and get out and take in the views. Unlike many of the other beautiful spots in Yosemite, you merely have to drive there and point your camera. This means that your images are not entirely original, and you often have to fight a lot of crowds, but it is ultimately worth it as the view is a direct one of Half Dome and at least three different waterfalls.
You can spend hours here taking in the sites, and seeing the way different times of day affect the landscape. As stated on their website, this point offers you views of “Yosemite National Park’s Yosemite Valley, including Yosemite Falls, Half Dome, Vernal Fall, Nevada Fall, and Clouds Rest.” You can see Clouds Rest in the picture below; it is directly behind Half Dome.
The best time to visit Glacier Point is during the morning and evening, or at least when the sun is starting to set. This will give you the best lighting for photos and seeing a sunset or sunrise while here is a huge plus. I would tend to avoid it in the summertime as there are often entire buses of people being dropped off at this point, but if you are going to Yosemite in the summer, then you know how busy it is to go anywhere in the park.
When photographing a place like Glacier Point, you can bring whatever you would like. I shot these pictures on a Canon 7d with a 28 to 135 lens I believe, but since no hiking is required, you can bring as many or as little amounts of lenses as you would like.
All in all, this is a beautiful place in an even more beautiful national park. If you have never been to Yosemite get it on your bucket list, you won’t regret it.