According to the Epoch Times, the Yosemite ‘firefall’ phenomenon happens when the setting sun hits the Horsetail Fall waterfall in such a way that it appears to be fire. This beautiful sight only occurs in the last few weeks of February when it has been warm enough for snow to melt and flow down 1,500ft. The sun must be at a specific angle, that only occurs during this time, in order to light the falls up with a orange-red glow.
“When the fall started glowing, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. For 10 minutes, all of us sat there mesmerized by this spectacle. When it ended, a few of us had tears in our eyes. Some of us were clapping. And others were just ecstatic to finally get a chance to see it after trying for years,” stated Sangeeta Dey, one of the photographers.
The 2016 Yosemite ‘firefall’ hasn’t been the best one ever, but it has been the best one in the past few years. El Niño has aided the ‘firefall’ this year by bringing in enough snow and rain into the Sierra Mountains to fuel the waterfall that creates the illusion of lava when the sun strikes it at the right angle. The ‘firefall’ only lasts for about 10 minutes at sunset, but it is sure a sight to see. People are flocking into Yosemite every night to view the incredible site with their camera in hand. If you haven’t seen it yet, go and check it out because the ‘firefall’ is expected to occur the next few days.
“In the over 20 years I have been photographing the firefall and leading workshops there in Yosemite, I have never seen a more spectacular one,” said Michael Mariant, a photographer from Morro Bay, Calif., who leads teaching trips to Yosemite.