A solstice sunrise: Yoga fans celebrate first day of summer on Sundial Bridge – Record Searchlight

The first rays of Tuesday’s sunrise illuminated a colorfully clad group of yoga enthusiasts who welcomed the first day of summer atop the Sundial Bridge.
About 75 people — mostly women — signed up for the annual Summer Solstice Yoga gathering hosted by Redding Recreation.
Tuesday’s solstice is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and for Redding, marked the start of an expected heat wave.
The solstice is the one day of the year when the Sundial Bridge functions as a working sundial.
Read more: The Sundial Bridge’s sole day of accuracy
Yoga fans brought their mats as they struck their poses while suspended over the Sacramento River and listened to the calming voice of instructor Stuart Ryals.
Ryals, who teaches yoga at the Shasta Family YMCA, said he’s been a practitioner for a little over 50 years.
“I first learned while I was a senior in high school a long time ago. I’m 70 now. I’ve enjoyed it my whole life,” Ryals said.
He said practicing yoga in nature is enjoyable for many.
“We did it at sunrise. It’s just to celebrate summer and yoga, and those people who like that outdoors,” Ryals said. “We don’t have that many outdoor yoga events around.”
Mike Chapman is an award-winning reporter and photographer for the Record Searchlight in Redding, Calif. His newspaper career spans Yreka and Eureka in Northern California and Bellingham, Wash. Support local journalism by subscribing today.

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