Grapevine Lake water levels

Fireworks Exposure Value

Map to Rockledge Park

We shall have fun photographing fireworks at Lake Grapevine this year. As of today, May 30th, the lake is only 98% full. The good news is the level is down about 40' from last April.

Fireworks exposure considerations were covered last year. It was definitely worthwhile re reading it. I used a 3 stop hard grad filter in 2017 to better expose the reflections and the fireworks. It worked! The exposure was ISO 100, f / 5.6 for the reflections. The added 3 stops for the fireworks got the exposure down to f / 16. The times ranged from 1 to 6 seconds.

The prevailing wisdom is ISO 100 @ F / 11. I think that blows out the color too much. The F / 16 does a better job keeping the glorious color.

Equipment Requirements:

  1. Head lamp (best) or a flash light to find the stuff you drop
  2. Camera
  3. Tripod
  4. Remote Shutter Release
  5. Lens
    1. Full Frame: 50mm - 200mm
    2. APS-c: 30mm - 125mm
    (From Rockledge Park in previous years the images ranged from 70mm to 105mm using a 70-200mm lens to include both the fireworks and the reflection. If just the fireworks are of interest then the 100-200mm range is more useful.)



Grapevine Fireworks displays start at 9:30 p.m. and last less than fifteen minutes. The time to get your camera setup and aligned is before 9:30 p.m. We have several experienced photographers on this shoot to to help with any questions.




Arrive Rockledge Park about 8:00 PM.

Sunset pictures at 8:30 PM.

Blue Hour at 9:00 PM - Great for the background of collages!

Fireworks start at 9:30 Sharp!

Park closes about 10:00 PM.

Park fee: $5 per vehicle


It is about 1.2 miles from the fireworks launch location, a good distance for photography. The arrow points to about where we will be.