More photos from old vacations. This time we have moved from Arizona to Utah and to Bryce Canyon. This was a place I was absolutely blown away by. Photos of the canyon and the hoodoos within had got me interested in the place but seeing it was quite stunning. We were staying on the rim so hiking down in to the canyon or taking the trail around the rim was really easy for us. It might be true that I spent so much time trying to take some photos on the way around the rim trail that we got to the lot farther around too late for the shuttle and had to walk back again. I think that proved to be good fortune as the views get better as the sun gets lower.
When you are within the canyon, the hoodoos rise up around you and you get a sense of the scale which you don’t from outside. The peace and calm when you are down in there is very special. I may not be a spiritual person but I certainly felt really at ease as we walked through the trails. Here are a few of the shots I took during that trip. There are other parts of Utah that we haven’t explored yet and I hope any trip back includes the opportunity to visit Bryce again.
I was watching a YouTube video recently where they discussed photographing Mesa Arch in Canyonlands. This is one of my shots from my visit there and, while I had some similar experiences to the guys on YouTube, I also had a great overall experience.Mesa Arch is famous for the sun rising through the arch. I wanted to be there for that so an early start was required. Getting there requires a reasonable drive from Moab but we were staying a bit outside Moab anyway so we had a longer drive. I wanted to get there in plenty of time so we started out very early.
As we drove into Canyonlands, I could see some large taillights ahead of me. It looked like a coach and where else would it be going at this time of the morning. Sure enough, we followed it in to the parking lot near the arch. The coach disgorged a group of tourists from Japan and we followed them up the trail.
At the arch itself, a ton of people were lined up directly in front of the arch. We decided to hold back a short distance and see how things played out. Everyone was waiting for the sun to appear over the horizon. The good thing about shooting landscapes instead of aircraft is you know what time things will happen. Sunrise is never late and, while it might be overcast, the sun doesn’t go tech. Up it popped. What followed was quite funny. There was the sound of lots of shutters clicking as soon as the sun popped up. I’m sure it wasn’t immediate but it then felt like everyone turned and walked away. About fifteen minutes later there were probably half a dozen of us with cameras and tripods left alone. The group worked well together moving around and giving each other space and time.
Here is the best bit. The sunrise was okay but nothing special. However, after about fifteen to twenty minutes, the light started to really illuminate the rock surfaces around us. The walls and the underside of the arch were glowing. It was infinitely better than when the sun came up and hardly anybody that had trekked out early that morning saw it. They had all gone. Those of us that remained had a great time. If you ever go to Canyonlands, be patient!
I had a long layover at Salt Lake City when connecting on a Delta flight. The sun was out and the mountains in the background were covered in snow so it made for a rather pretty backdrop for the airport operations. It was a bit Delta-centric given that they hub at the airport and we were in one of their terminals but it did make for some nice light and scenery for aviation shots.
Continuing the theme of looking back through photos of trips I have taken in the past and that have never made their way on to the blog, we find ourselves in Utah. Our trip to the Grand Canyon was the first leg of a journey that also included some time at Bryce Canyon. This was a location that I was really struck by. The beauty of it combined with the relative peace at the time of year we were there meant it was something very special. Walking down into the canyon was a very inspiring experience.
We spent some time there and walked along the rim of the canyon (and back again courtesy of missing the shuttle as a result of someone spending too much time taking pictures) as well as into the canyon itself. The weather was great while we were there which certainly helped to appreciate what it had to offer. These shots are a few of the many I took while there. Now I want to go back!