Looking south from Arch Rock the twilight turned to night. Individual stars turned to the star-filled night sky and banks of fog shifted in the night wind. Down below, big rollers crashed on end of their journey across the Pacific. The remaining ambient light from the sunset over Point Reyes slowly faded.
Besides the stars, the predominant light source was now the city glow from distant San Francisco, coming around the massive cliffs of Point Reyes and the distant Marin Headlands. This eerie city light played at dancing with the swiftly moving banks of clouds.
I made this exposure for 300 seconds (five minutes) with the camera wide open (ISO 100, f/4, 12mm). Then I packed up my tripod and camera kit, taking care in the dark not to forget anything.
I picked my way carefully off my high platform, and headed back through the darkness of a forest passage to my car waiting on the other side of the coastal hills. Most of the time, I can see pretty well at night once I let my eyes adjust. But the Bear Valley trail runs deep in a valley under dense cover. Although it is a wide path, I didn’t fancy stepping into blackness, so I walked back by headlamp.
Once more it was drive drive drive back to a sleeping house and bed at half way to morning.