During the first weekend of May, I headed to St. Augustine. There’s a beautiful patch of beach there where it is so fun to photograph the sunrise. I headed out extra early, planning to be there to capture the best colors, which often happen half an hour before sunrise. I was driving along nicely at 4:30 am when suddenly all the cars on I-4 came to a screeching halt. For twenty minutes I sat without moving, wondering if by the time the traffic was moving, if it would even be worth it to continue to St. Augustine. Then as quickly as the traffic stopped, it began moving again. By the time I got to the beach, the sky was lightening, but it was covered in clouds. Not exactly the ideal sunrise conditions!
I played with my neutral density filters to capture some long exposures. I love what extra-long exposure times do to the waves as they ebb and flow around rocks. The clouds didn’t show any signs of clearing as the sunrise time approached. But that’s when the magic happened…
The sun burst through a small hole in the clouds. For a few short minutes, the beach was bathed in beautiful golden light. It was amazing! The tall breaking waves were backlit by the rising sun, and every droplet of water sparkled. The warm sun glowed on the rocks and the sand. It was so pretty.
The moment didn’t last long. Within just a few short minutes, the sun passed behind the clouds again. The dark clouds were an ominous blue, which didn’t bode well for my next stop. More about that in my next post…
Want to learn more about nature photography at Marineland Beach?
Check out my Marineland Beach page with more information about the location, map, website, photography tips, etc. It is archived by date so you can see my images from previous visits. Maybe you'll be inspired for your own trip!
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