Cherry Blossoms at Peak


The cherry trees were entering the peak phase today and the tidal basin was lined with photographers at sunrise.  Last night, however, there was a full moon and only three of us (photo colleagues Joan and Cynthia) were shooting in this new location.


Full Moon, View from Virginia Shoreline

(Technical: Nikon D810 with 70-200mm f/2.8 lens extended to 165mm; exposure: 2.5 sec. at f/5.6, ISO 400; taken about 35 minutes after sunset)

While the moon was rising the cherry trees were hard at work, getting ready for this morning.  Both of the images below were taken before sunrise this morning.


Dawn, Tidal Basin

(Technical: Nikon D810 with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens extended to 24mm; exposure: 5 sec. at f/16, ISO 800; On-camera flash at reduced power to provide slight fill on blossoms, taken about 35 minutes before sunrise)


Dawn, Jefferson Memorial

(Technical: Nikon D810 with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens extended to 48mm; exposure: 0.5 sec. at f/16, ISO 800; On-camera flash at normal power to provide fill on blossoms, taken about 25 minutes before sunrise)

I suspect none of the photographers there were thrilled to see all those cranes to the left of the Jefferson Memorial.  They are in the early phases of a major development along the waterfront on Maine Avenue.  I suspect most of us will be using Photoshop to “disappear” them.

The blossoms will be with us for a few more days, weather permitting.

Keep Shooting….

43 thoughts on “Cherry Blossoms at Peak

    • Great, hope you have good luck. Be aware that there usually is a sunrise Easter service on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial so that will add to the traffic congestion early on Sunday morning.


    • Thanks, Sarah. I take your point. Actually, we are heading over to London in about 3 weeks, but will only be there a day before we head up to Oxford to see friends. So, being forwarned by you, I won’t be surprised if we see a lot of cranes the day and night we spend in London.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Wicked 🙂 Hopefully we’ll have some decent weather for you!! I love it around Oxford 🙂 Such a beautiful place! Which part of London are you staying in? There always seems to be development going on everywhere around the city! If you get time, go to the Shard. My favourite building in London 🙂 It’s quite something to look out over the entire cityscape from the top too!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks, Sarah. We’ll be staying across the river from Westminster and Big Ben. I hope we have time to get over to see the Shard; it looks very cool. But when we go with more than a single day, we will definitely find a place in the area near the Shard, London Bridge, and Tower Bridge.


  1. The cherry tree foregrounds are really beautiful and add another element to describe the season in DC. I once went to the cherry blossom festival about 25 years ago. I was a bit early but it was still beautiful. Gorgeous images as usual Robin!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Laura. I really appreciate your kind words. If it has been 25 years, you might not like it so much these days. I’ve been going down there for about 10 years now and each year it gets more crowded. But the trees are still fabulous.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s a very different experience from the mid-1970’s, which is when I first began to visit them during blooming. Back in those days there was no social media and hardly any coverage by the various news outlets, so getting there during peak was a bit touch-and-go. Also hardly anything in the way of crowds compared to now…

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks very much, I hope to get some more. It was pretty windy in the early hours this morning and the movement of the trees made the longer exposures inadvisable. But I hope to have better luck this afternoon or tomorrow.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Greg. I was lucky that I chose that side of the tidal basin for a change. It was completely dark when I got there, so I had no idea I would be shooting directly toward a great sunrise.


      • From what I know, it’s a so-called “revitalization” project along Maine Avenue that will have housing, commercial, a public spaces. In theory, that’s not a bad idea. It wasn’t the most attractive area. However, the height of a crane is usually a tip-off to the ultimate height of the building it is erecting. So it would appear there are some pretty tall buildings that will be above the tree line next to the Jefferson Memorial.


      • Ouch; I didn’t realize they were along Maine Avenue. You’re right — those ARE some tall cranes for that section of town. I bet some people north of them are going to be seriously upset when their view of the Potomac gets cut off…

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks very much. It will be interesting to see if the high winds today had a big impact on the blossoms. I suspect the end is close. But that means the bluebells along the Virginia shorleine upriver from the city will be taking their turn. My hiking colleagues tell me they are about to pop out.


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