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On a Clear Day in L.A., You Can See Forev… errr, Pretty Far

Downtown Los Angeles as seen from Palos Verdes

Downtown Los Angeles as seen from Palos Verdes, a distance of nearly 25 miles.

Some of the best days in Los Angeles are right after it rains. Yesterday was just such a day.

I was struck while driving in the morning by how close the snow-capped mountains appeared to be. In truth, they’re not far—maybe 30 miles or so from the coastal edges of the Basin—but the day after a rain, they look like they’re walking distance.

There just wasn’t the time in the morning to position myself for some good shots, but I certainly made the time in the afternoon. My pal Stu Chalfin and I went over to Peninsula High School in Palos Verdes, walked onto the athletic field behind the school, climbed to the top row of the visitor’s stands to get above the foliage, and snapped pictures for a few minutes. These two were taken with a 200mm lens at about 4 in the afternoon. There was a bit more haze than there had been in the morning, believe it or not, but conditions were still remarkable for photographing and just looking.

Newport Beach as seen from Palos Verdes

Newport Beach as seen from Palos Verdes, a distance of about 25 miles.

The view toward Orange County was nearly as spectacular as the northeasterly one. On the far right of the shot are the big buildings in the Santa Ana-Costa Mesa area, just inland from Newport Beach.

You can see the green top of the west end of the Vincent Thomas Bridge on the right side of the picture, about halfway between the top and bottom.

There aren’t many days this clear in southern California, which made it that much more important to click the shutter on this one.

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