While working on my book on San Francisco Bay I wanted to get an early morning vista of the bay from the summit of Mount Tamalpais in Marin County. After a long pre-dawn drive and clambering in the dark up the final pathway to the summit cabin I managed a number of fair shots in the haze as the sun rose over the Bay. Somewhat dissatisfied I turned back and drove down the mountain, all the while keeping my eye out for additional images.
At a familiar turnoff above Pantoll I pulled over and walked to the crest of the hill overlooking San Francisco. The orange sunrise light had given way to a blue haze above a receding series of hills, with fog in the valleys and the city skyline in the distance. After a series of pleasing shots, I paused and then, from nowhere, a large raptor soared into the frame, hung silently above the silhouetted trees, just long enough for another shot, and then just as silently flew on.