Sunrise at Lake Toho

I show "Lake Toho Lighthouse at Dawn" after waking up early and shooting this scene long before first light. Prints Available

Florida lighthouse makes perfect photo

I travel for upwards of 20 weeks a year with Bassmaster, photographing their bass tournaments. So I have to roll out of bed pretty early — but I have developed an internal alarm clock that usually goes off 15 minutes to an hour before my cell phone begins chirping.

That's what had me up early today a couple of hours before my work in Kissimmee, Florida, was set to begin. My eyes popped open at 4 a.m., and 20 minutes later I was pouring a cup of coffee and heading out the door for the short drive to the banks of Lake Tohokeliga (better known as Lake Toho).

You see, I had noticed a small lighthouse at Kissimmee Lakefront Park. I hoped it would be lighted.

When I arrived, I was thrilled to see lights bouncing off the brick and a light rotating in the illumination chamber.

I took one last sip of coffee and hustled to the shoreline. I set up my Benro Mach 3 carbon fiber tripod to capture the scene before any daylight lightened the night skies.

And I really like the resulting photo (seen below).

This was the first image captured at the little lighthouse on the banks of Lake Toho. I was set up an hour before the horizon was touched by the first light of day.

It's just a nice, clean image with a wonderful reflection on the calm waters of Lake Toho.

However, I wasn't sure it was what I wanted to load to my online fine-art print gallery. So I kept an eye on the skies as I worked to document the activities of the second day of the Bassmaster Southern Open that was beginning several hundred yards away.

There weren't any visible clouds, so I didn't expect a lot of color. So I was thrilled when I saw the skies above the lake explode in golden color.

So I slipped back into position and captured the exact photo I knew would make a wonderful addition to my Florida Collection.

That photo, "Lake Toho Lighthouse at Dawn," is shown at the top of this blog.

Some people ask me why I love the early mornings so much — well, this print is a perfect example. Even though I decided not to upload the first photo from the morning I was prepared to make it happen when conditions fell into place.