Nature’s Door

Montana de Oro
Montana de Oro

Montana de Oro State Park is a place I go to often.  Always with a camera but also for walking and enjoying.  There are miles of trails and paths with several inaccessible beaches with interesting rock formations.  This is the one I’d really like to get down to.

Antelope Canyon Sun Beam

Antelope Canyon Arizona
Antelope Canyon Arizona
Antelope Canyon Arizona
Antelope Canyon Arizona

Here are two more from Antelope Canyon.  The first is a sun beam that appeared just at noon when the sun is directly over the canyon opening.  This is one shot many try to get and I positioned myself at this spot well in advance.  The second gives you an idea of how narrow the canyon is.  The entry if relatively large but the rest of it looks much like the second photo.  Next stop Monument Valley.

Tsé Bighánílíní

Antelope Canyon
Antelope Canyon

There are two places I’ve really wanted to see and photograph and I have finally been able to do it.  One of these is Antelope Canyon; the other is Monument Valley which I will post about in a couple of days.

The title of this blog is a Navajo term which means “the place where water runs through rocks” and is the subject of this photo.  It’s in the upper canyon which is also referred to as the “crack”.  These sandstone slot canyons are heavily visited and photographed.    If you’ve read reviews you’ll hear that it’s crowded with lots of people walking through making it hard for photographers.  That’s true but I didn’t care. Walking into the canyon for the first time left me speechless and in awe.

It’s dark so a tripod is a must. I changed up the settings a little depending on the amount of light filtering in through the top of the canyon but this was taken at .8 sec, f/11, and ISO at 500.

The Canyon Floor

Canyon de Chelly, Arizona
Canyon de Chelly, Arizona

After driving along the rim of Canyon de Chelly I went into the bottom the next morning.  You must have a Navajo guide take you because of the many ruins and sacred areas.  Looking up gives you a much different perspective that looking over the edge.  This shot is typical of the walls in color and shape.  In the next couple of days I’ll post a few more.

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.

 

 

Painted Desert Storm

Painted Desert, AZ
Painted Desert, AZ

The morning started with a few clouds and as the day went on they increased until the sky turned dark and rain fell.  Occasionally the sun would peek out and provide some interesting light.

Painted Desert

Arizona
Arizona

After resting and catching up at home we’re off to Northern Arizona’s Painted Desert.  There are so many colors and textures it will be very difficult choosing which ones to post.  This is far from one of the dramatic ones but it will give you a sense of what’s to come.

Kings Highway

Maui
Maui

It’s not really a highway but a trail that starts at La Pérouse Bay, on Maui southern coast, and winds through the lava fields created by Haleakal¯a’s last eruption in 1790.  The trail is well defined but getting off it to photograph tidal pools and various coves is a challenge due to the unforgiving lava rocks. This is the start of the trail.

You all know that on one of these hikes or outings we take many photos but only can publish a few.  These are couple to give you an idea of what it looks like.

Maui
Maui
Maui
Maui
Maui

Rock Race

Death Valley National Park
Death Valley National Park

I had to post one more Racetrack Playa shot.  When I saw this I had to chuckle.  These rocks may have been racing each other for thousands of years and it’s still very close.  We mortals will never know who wins but it does look as if one participant dropped out.  There was no sign of it anywhere.