out & about | Golden Gate Bridge & the Marin Headlands

Golden Gate Bridge | Neely Wang

The other day, my photo buddies and I thought it would be fun to go up to the Headlands in Marin County, California to take some pictures of the Golden Gate Bridge at sunset. We had a feeling that it would be fogged in, but thought that the fog would make some cool pictures nonetheless. 

Marin Headlands | Neely Wang

Little did we know that it would be freezing cold and extremely windy. I’ve been up to the Marin Headlands many times, but this was definitely the windiest and coldest I’d ever experienced. I literally felt like I could have been lifted up and blown away. 

Marin Headlands | Neely Wang

If you’ve ever visited or lived in San Francisco, you probably have experienced the Bay Area’s many microclimates. Within a 10 minute drive, you could be transported from sunny warm weather to blustery freezing winds and then finally be swallowed up in fog.

Golden Gate Bridge | Neely Wang

This trip was no different. I always feel sorry for the poor unknowing souls (a.k.a. tourists) who come so excited to leisurely walk across the Golden Gate Bridge in shorts and a T-shirt, but end up freezing cold from the biting wind. My friend, a San Francisco native, was well prepared with her ski jacket (in July). I had luckily grabbed a fleece jacket before I left that still had winter gloves inside the pockets. On that note, if you’re thinking about ever visiting San Francisco, come in the fall instead of the summer. It’s much warmer and sunnier and less foggy and cold. And dress in layers.

Marin Headlands | Neely Wang

Unfortunately, it was a bit too foggy and grey to catch any sort of sunset or golden light, but the picture above turned out to be one of my favourites from the set. I’ve photographed the Golden Gate Bridge many times before and sometimes tire of it if the light is not right. But I always make sure I turn around and see what’s behind me instead of just photographing the “main attraction.” You never know what unassuming beauty may be right behind you. I love how the yellow flowers are “dancing” in the wind.

Angel Island | Neely Wang

We ended up driving literally less than 10 minutes inland to some quiet peaceful water to see if we could catch the last of the light as the sun was setting. We didn’t have an agenda (as usual), and just pulled off the side of the road to where these two little seaplanes were docked.

Sea Planes | Neely Wang

Such a peaceful and calm difference compared to where we were just a few minutes before.

Marsh | Neely Wang

Sea Plane | Neely Wang

Sunset Pier | Neely Wang

Across the way were all these little boathouses lining the waterfront. I’d love to see inside one of them and imagine what it would be like to live there!

Boat Houses | Neely Wang

It’s always fun exploring new places and discovering something that might inspire you. There’s something about the stillness of the water paired with the potential speed of the plane that I just love. What story does it tell?

Seaplane | Neely Wang


4 comments

    • Thank you, Laurie! Yes, a year can make quite a difference, let alone a day or even an hour in the Bay Area! Glad that you had beautiful sunny skies when you were there!

    • Thank you so much, Ni! I really enjoy going out to places and exploring. It’s not always easy, but I often force myself myself to try my best in keeping fresh eyes when I look at or photograph something — trying to see everything from a new and different perspective each time.


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