Description of Attraction: This small lighthouse on a rocky shoreline is one of the better lighthouses to photograph due to its unobstructed location, position on a prominent point out on the rocks so it can be shot from both sides, and accessibility. It offers excellent composition opportunities with rocks and ocean in front and an open sky in the back for sunrise, sunset or various cloud formations.
Location Address: The lighthouse is located in Winter Island Park and does not have an address so use 50 Winter Island Road, Salem, MA.
Parking: There is ample parking in the park if the gate is open. If the gate is closed, park on the side of the street and walk five minutes straight through the park to the water and the lighthouse is on the left. This parking location serves all photo locations
Trail/Hiking Time: There is little or no walking time to the locations shown. Care must be taken climbing on any rocks at low tide, as they are very slippery with seaweed.
GPS: 42.526700 -70.866600
TPE Info: http://app.photoephemeris.com/?ll=42.527032,-70.867058¢er=42.5291,-70.8916&dt=20160620111800-0400&z=15&spn=0.02,0.07
Location #1: (above) This picture was shot looking straight east toward the rising sun. Depending on the tide, there are numerous vantage points either down on the water or on the grass above the rocks. There is quite a bit of latitude for movement depending on the framing and position of sun desired.
Photo Data: (above) Taken on April 18, 2016 at 5:50 a.m. using a Canon 5D Mark iii with a Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L lens at 124mm. Shot at F22 for 1/13 sec with a 3-stop ND filter. Processed in Lightroom
Location #2: This was one of my first shots of the day and was done on the shoreline. The tide was low enabling you to pass the breakwater rocks. I included this shot to show some of the excellent foreground elements that can be included.
Photo Data: Taken on April 18, 2016 at 5:25 a.m. using a Canon 5D Mark iii with a Canon EF 24‑105mm ‑ F/4.0 lens at 24mm. Shot at F18 for 10 sec. Processed in Lightroom
Best time of day to visit: Certainly the hour before and after sunrise is excellent. Depending on the time of the year, you can always get a good angle. While I have not visited at sunset, this could also be a good location to have the light on the front of the lighthouse and rocks and any colors on the eastern horizon. As mentioned, there is an excellent view from the other side for sunset.
Best time of year to visit: Any time of year works, but I prefer spring-fall in order to get the sun somewhere behind the lighthouse. In the winter it may be too far in the southern sky to include it along with the shoreline, but it may provide some other angles from above the lighthouse.
Best type of light/weather: Infinite number of choices here as the elements of the location are very strong and adding the components of weather and light is your choice
Additional Equipment Needed: I strongly endorse TPE (The Photographer’s Ephemeris) App for planning your shot. A tripod, polarizing/neutral density filters and shutter release are needed. I also like a good pair of waterproof boots for navigation in the water if you choose to go down to the shore. I would also bring a flashlight or headlamp and a walking pole to help navigate the rocks
Additional Information: This site has many more photo opportunities as there are trails above the lighthouse that allow you to shoot down at it as well as access points from the other side of the lighthouse for sunset shots. I will include these after I visit again.