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photographer Paul Jaruszewski.

Powell Street Cable Car Line

I took scads of pictures of the cable cars in San Francisco. I got the people waiting in line, the cable cars coming down the streets, going up the streets. We were offered the option to stand at the end of the car and I shot lots of great pictures from that perspective. This picture, however is the one I keep coming back to look at so I thought I would share it with you. The cable cars are a big tourist attraction in the city, and the line that runs from the financial district to the wharf is the main attraction. People buy tickets, wait in line for a half an hour or more and finally get on. Worse than Disneyland's attractions. After turning the cars around on a turntable device at the very end of the line, the cars are pushed back on to the cables, then before loading are moved a few feet where they are stopped and borders are allowed on. During one such cycle, I noticed the driver pulling back hard on the mechanism in the cab. I thought that would make a great picture, and when the next one came by, I snapped this one. This was taken just as he started to pull back. A fraction of a second later, he would have been about 45 degrees backwards pulling on the handle, but I shot too soon. By the time the next one came around, we were further in line and not at the most opportune angle for the shot. Maybe next trip...


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hide photo detail info shooting date: 2002-08-18 | location: San Francisco
shutter speed: 1/180s | aperture: f/6.7 | ISO: 200 | lens: Canon 28-105 f3.5-4.5 @ 43mm (68mm in 35mm film SLR)
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