Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust
Autumn Moon, the High Sierra from Glacier Point, taken Sept. 15, 1948.
Ansel Adams' photo
Ansel Adams' photo Autumn Moon, the High Sierra from Glacier Point, taken Sept. 15, 1948. Ansel Adams Publishing Rights Trust
Astronomers have pinpointed the exact moment when legendary landscape photographer Ansel Adams snapped his famous photo Autumn Moon, capturing a moonlit night in the Yosemite Valley: Sept. 15, 1948, at about 7:03 p.m. Pacific Daylight Time.
Alex Chadwick talks with National Geographic Society photographer Chris Rainier about plans to re-create that photograph Thursday night in Yosemite National Park.
Adams was famous for recording the smallest details of his photos — the apertures, exposure times, types of film, shutter speeds and how the negatives and prints were developed — but was notoriously vague about when and exactly where he captured many of his most notable images.
Astronomers at Texas State University studied the stars, lighting and position and phase of the moon, then wrote a special program to determine the exact date, time and spot where the photo was taken.