The Sun Breaks Through

Monument Valley

Monument Valley Sunrise 1

The storm clouds interfered with a normal sunrise but when they briefly separated we had a short window.  This particular shot doesn’t capture the majestic monuments that make Monument Valley famous but I liked it.

Spider Rock

Canyon de Chelly Arizona
Canyon de Chelly Arizona

The last stop of the day was at the Spider Rock overlook.  This sandstone monolith is 800 feet tall and was the highlight of day one at Canyon de Chelly.  Tomorrow I’ll be going down into the canyon,

On Top of Canyon de Chelly

Canyon de Chelly, AZ
Canyon de Chelly Arizona

From the Painted Desert we drove to Chinle to see Canyon de Chelly.  There is a paved road that follows the north side of the canyon with several turn outs allowing opportunities to shoot from above.  This was late in the afternoon and the sun and clouds created wonderful shadows.  The photos do a very good job of representing how majestic it is but one still needs to see it first hand to fully appreciate the beauty.

Towers in the Desert

Painted Desert, Arizona
Painted Desert, Arizona

I spent one and half days shooting in the Painted Desert east of Tuba City, AZ.  Other than the natural beauty of the area one of the most remarkable things is that I never saw another person;  I don’t mean just photographers but anyone.  These locations were reachable on dirt roads off the main highways, and I did hike a little once I parked, but not a sole was there.  Pretty rare these days.

 

 

The Grandstand Playa

Death Valley National Park
Death Valley National Park

The Grandstand is located in the northwest corner of Racetrack Playa and is approximately 66 feet (20 meters) above the surface.  The playa is reached by driving on a single lane dirt and rocky road for 30 miles.  It is one of the roughest roads I’ve ever experienced.

Ubehebe Crater

Death Valley National Part.
Death Valley National Park

Ubehebe Crater is located at the north tip of the Cottonwood Mountains. The crater is half a mile (one kilometer) wide and 500 to 777 feet (150 to 237 m) deep. The age of the crater is estimated from 2,000 to 7,000 years old.”Ubehebe” (pronounced YOU-bee-HEE-bee) is a Timbisha Native American word meaning “Big basket in the rock.”

Zabriskie Point

Death Valley National Park
Death Valley National Park

Zabriskie Point is four miles East of Furnace Creek Lodge on Highway 190. There is a parking lot and the hike is up hill but only 1/4 of a mile. These badlands are developed on a mud-stone foundation.  Fine-grained sediments of silt and clay were deposited in one of Death Valley’s prehistoric lakes, then were buried by still more sediment, and finally compressed and weakly cemented to form the soft rock called mud stone.

Potomic River

Not what you expected?  This is the upper part of the river at Great Falls Park in Maryland.  A beautiful spot for hiking, observing,

Patomic River Great Falls Park