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Mono Lake used to be much deeper. Drawing off the water to send to LA resulted in dropping the level significantly. The attraction of the lake is the many calcium deposits that used to be below the surface, but now are exposed. They are called Tufa. There is currently an effort to restore the lake to nearer its original level. Most of the tufa will be drowned once again if that happens.
Click on images for enlarged view.
Tufa in morning light
The first day we went to Mono Lake was completely clear. This is the sun's morning rays lighting up the tufa with the Sierra in the background.
Tufa Castle Sunrise
The next morning we noted clouds on the eastern horizon and thought they might light up with the rising sun. When they did we were rewarded with some very nice colors.
Red Sunrise over Tufa
This was taken just a few moments after the one above. Both used a high ISO so a fast shutter speed could be used to preserve the small waves in the water.
Morning Glow and Tufa
The water has a very high mineral content, especially calcium. You can see the deposits on the dead brush in the foreground.
The clouds reflecting in the calm water provide some contrast to the darker reflections of the tufa.
Sunrise on Tufa
The early morning golden light gives a bit of color to the otherwise drab tufa formations.
Content and Images Copyright 1998-2011 Jeffrey W. Johnson. No use without permission.
Content and Images Copyright 1998-2012 Jeffrey W. Johnson. No use without permission.