Those of us who chase the light for that magic photograph are familiar with the conceptual “GOLDEN HOUR”. Its that time 30 min before to 30 min after sunrise or sunset when the sun is near the horizon.

When the sun is near the horizon, sunlight travels through a greater depth of atmosphere, reducing the intensity of the direct light, so that more of the illumination comes from indirect light from the sky (Thomas 1973, 9–13), reducing the lighting ratio. More blue light is scattered, so if the sun is present, its light appears more reddish. In addition, the sun’s small angle with the horizon produces longer shadows. Because the contrast is less during the golden hour, shadows are less dark, and highlights are less likely to be overexposed. In landscape photography, the warm color of the low sun is often considered desirable to enhance the colours of the scene. ( ).

Recently I planned an evening on the Central California Coast Near Morro Bay, to watch the sunset at Morro Strand State Beach. In less than an hour I was treated with a broad array of sky, colors and textures from the same vantage point. Below is a collection of photos all taken within that hour. ENJOY!