On the 4th of July I went with Steve Thornburg over to place just past Bray, CA by Orr Lake to cut some firewood. So of course I took my camera along for the chance to get some great pictures.
I was shooting these pictures during the middle of the afternoon so the lighting was a little harsh. To help get better colors and contrast I fortunately had a circular polarizing filter with me. Circular polarizing filters are essential to getting great colors and contrast in your landscape photography. They help darken the sky for a deeper blue, they help bring out the greens in the plants around you also. Think about how the world around you looks with out sunglasses on a bright day. There is a lot of glare and it is difficult to appreciate the contrast of objects. Then you put on your sunglasses and the world opens up as you are then able to appreciate the different levels of illumination more clearly. This is another function of a polarizing filter, it reduces the light entering the camera increasing it effective dynamic range per say.
So when you are taking a landscape photograph with a circular polarizing filter you can rotate the filter to increase of decrease its effect. Making the sky as dark or as light as you need it. One thing to be careful about when you are using a circular polarizing filter is with a short focal length lens 35mm or shorter you can get some vignetting, darkening of the edges or parts of the sky.
So here are the pictures I took of Mt Shasta. I also included a picture my son took as I was up in a tree cutting limbs off while Steve was cutting rounds off the base. It was a great picture.