Tonight’s epiphany bonfire in the falling snow couldn’t have been more magical and I almost gave up on shooting it…

I made it home from work a little after 5 and had enough time to change and drop off my son at basketball practice before heading to Riverhead beach and the annual (though belated) epiphany bonfire.  I arrived as the first flames rose from the pile of Christmas trees and turned into the Devereux parking lot only to find far more parked cars and far less room than I expected.  I turned into what appeared to be the last open slot only to feel my car dip a bit and realize I had tried to park in part of a snow bank.  I quickly hit reverse and felt my tires spin…and spin…and spin.  Eventually I rocked my way out of there and decided to give up on the shoot.

As I turned left on Atlantic Avenue, I thought better of it and turned down Beach Street where I found a perfect parking spot on a well plowed street.  From there is was a short walk to the balcony of Lime Rickeys where I found protection from the falling snow and a perfect spot to capture the bonfire.  I shot several close ups of the fire before pulling back on the zoom upon realizing the temporary lights were perfectly illuminating the falling snow.

From there it was a matter of deciding on vertical vs horizontal compositions and timing the shot to capture a burst of flames while also getting the snow perfectly illuminated by the spotlight.  This was easily my favorite shot of the night and made the stress of nearly getting stuck in the snow very much worth it.