Landscapes are not always lit in glorious light. Professional photographers know how to go out early or late during the magic hour when the light is mystical and serene and come all with knock-your-socks-off photos. We’ve all seen them. More challenging is to take the light as you find it, dull or drab, stark, or fog-bound or rainy etc. and then show the scene.

This view of Mount Diablo from a high hill above Casto Valley shows mostly a full frame of clouds with the mountain and a few range cattle offset low at the bottom of the image. We do have “big sky” in the Bay Area but often we can only see it from a vantage point high on a hilltop.

Hiking recommendation: none

See Alameda County peaks