Last evening was a special event: the annual lighting of the classic fresnel lamp at Pigeon Point Lighthouse in Pescadero, California.

I arrived shortly before sunset began and was lucky to find a place to park quite close to where I had wanted to do my picture taking. It’s a little to the north of the lighthouse with a broad view of the cliffs and seacoast. 


There was quite a crowd gathered, I have no idea how many in toto but the row upon row of photographers assembled was impressive. The spot I’d envisioned was wonderfully free of obstructions and gave me the view I wanted. I imagined a fearsome din of shutters chattering at the moment of lighting, but you would need better ears than mine to hear it. 

I made about 200 exposures from sunset through the lighting … then stopped and just enjoyed the glorious view of this beacon alight once more for a half hour. Such a beautiful light! Its beams reach out across the vastness and warn sailors of their peril at the same time they beckon onwards: “Soon you will land in a magical place!” they seem to say. 

That was enough. It was cold, my fingers were frozen. I was done for the night and happy. 

Lots of rendering to do now …