The Mist Trail is one of the most popular short hikes in Yosemite National Park, California, USA. The hike follows the Merced River, starting at Happy Isles in Yosemite Valley, past Vernal Fall and Emerald Pool, to Nevada Fall. Along the trail, the Merced River is a tumultuous mountain stream, lying in a U-shaped valley. Enormous boulders, some the size of a house, are dwarfed by the sheer faces of exfoliating granite, which rise 3000 feet (914 m) from the river. Through it all, the Merced River rushes down from its source in the High Sierra, and broadens on the floor of Yosemite Valley. This is Yosemite’s signature hike. While many of Yosemite’s trails are popular due to having a single spectacular destination, the Mist Trail has fabulous views scattered all along it, beginning at the bridge overlook, progressing to two unforgettable waterfalls that fall a combined total of more than 900 feet (270 meters), and ending with perhaps the most striking of all: the view of Nevada Fall, Liberty Cap, and the back of Half Dome from the Muir Trail return segment. We started early in the morning, with the Trail in early daylight.
In photography, the golden hour (sometimes known as magic hour, is a period shortly after sunrise or before sunset during which daylight is redder and softer than when the sun is higher in the sky. Light can be further divided into the following light phases depending on the elevation of the sun: golden hour, blue hour, twilights, daytime and nighttime. Each of these periods are characterized by a particular color of the ambient light and the peril of losing the magic by overexposing or changing the color temperature. Yosemite is particularly special because this special light gradually climbs the steep cliffs and is reflected off the water and even the plants.