You sure feel the majesty of the red rock formations, as you sit and ponder this vast desert vista. A small hiking path beckons you to not sit, but wonder down it’s sandy trails, to wherever it might lead. I heard the call and like millions before me, picked myself up and made my way ever so slowly down into the vistas, I had previous photographed. A picture-perfect moment, a place to forget the troubled world we live in, de-stress and embrace the wind, and the power of nature you feel all around you. A sense of freedom overtakes and you, and you are indeed somewhere special, a place in time you will never forget.
Posts Tagged With: Arches
It’s a funny feeling hanging around tracks as an adult. You’re looking all around trying not to get caught. Don’t know if it’s legal or not to have your camera hugging a railroad tie, but it sure felt that way. To think as a child of 9 years old, chasing down a train and jumping on was something we did as kids for kicks. Let’s just say I grew up in a roudy neighborhood near Pittsburgh where getting in trouble was par for the course.
Left of these tracks (east) was Arches National Park and right (west) was Canyonlands National Park. Straight ahead was Moab. Spent 3 days there on a photography trip and enjoyed the heck out of it. Spring or fall is best times to go, unless you’re into hitting the place after a snow storm. Summers are just too crowded with families on vacations.
Wide angle lens can be fun especially when you got time on your hands. I was having a rough time in Arches this day trying to get some “near and far” wide angle HDR landscape shots, but the wind was not cooperating. It was gusting up to 50 mph and it was all I could do to hold my tripod down. Any trees or plants upclose was pretty well distorted and messy. So I went for long shots where the trees weren’t so noticeably blurred. The clouds were moving quick and blurred at 3 HDR shots. Arches is a beautiful place for dramatic shots and you really can’t go to wrong here. My rent-a-car special added some fun to the moment.
I like to take a photo of the rental cars I use when traveling to photo destinations. It’s kinda cool to use an extreme wide angle lens and have some fun warping the shot. This was taken with a 16-35mm Canon lens, my favorite lens for landscapes. Then a little HDR magic to bring out some zip, not that it needed any.
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Traveling in Pittsburgh at the time for July 4th week. Got back from Pismo Beach a couple of days ago and will have some nice photos to share from that trip.
Arches National Park in Utah on a very windy, but sunny day. Double Arch is a short hike up to this massive arch. It’s hard to get a true picture of the shear size of this thing. I’m using a wide angle 16-35 mm Canon lens to capture it and I’m literally right up underneath of it shooting almost straight up. Great experience.
Recently I went up to Utah to hike around the National Parks of Arches and Canyonlands. I kept coming back to this area for morning and evening shots and hoping for some interesting cloud cover. To catch this perspective I laid on the ground in the sand with this little yucca plant within 2 feet of the lens, hoping I could get it and “The Organ” rock formation in focus. I think I succeeded. The yucca is 1 foot high, the rock formation felt 500 feet high.
Recently I was traveling through the canyons along the Colorado River and stopped up in the Arches National Park. I kept stopping by “Park Avenue” as it is called, because it was so dramatic and for HDR photos I wanted to get some different cloud formations. I hiked down along the beaten path and was able to catch a variety of shots in this incredible landscape. It’s hard to describe the feeling you get inside this canyon with enormous sandstone walls surrounding you. It’s pretty unbelievable.
I sometimes try to scope out an area that I want to photograph a sunrise, the day before, to know where the “sweet spot” will be. In this case I took the hike down to Mesa Arch right before sunset to guess where the sun would rise the next day. The orange glow of the sun was coming in nicely, so I grabbed a few shots through the arch with the snow-capped La Sal mountains in the distance. With my tripod just a few feet from the edge of a 1000 foot vertical drop, keeps you on your toes and ready for any unsuspecting wind gust. After photographing here, I hiked quickly back out to catch the sunset at Green River Overlook a few miles away. Those I’ll show another time. Check out my gallery above for all my daily photos.
Fifty of us took the mile and half trek up the hill over slick rock and sand, narrow passageways with touchy drop-offs, to sit on the natural amphitheater-like sandstone, all waiting for the big event. Was there going to be the infamous red sunset or not? Most of us had resigned to the “not” side since thick clouds pretty much dominated the western sky. As the sun appeared to set undramatically, people started getting up to take the long trek back down. The “wait ’til the bitter end photographers” stayed put and sure enough for a quick thirty seconds the clouds opened up to allow the sun to blast out it’s magically light display. The “hold-outs” packed their gear and like a grand exodus, we all headed down the hill satisfied that we had gotten what we came for.
It’s 5 A.M., a time I rarely wish to see, but this morning was special. I arrived the day before to scope out this famous photographer’s spot in Canyonlands National Park in Utah called, “Mesa Arch”. I’d heard you had to get there before dawn to lock down a spot to have the prize shot of the day. It’s a 45 minute drive from Moab, Utah. The day before I hiked down to get my bearings, knowing I had to find it in the dark. Other photographers had mentioned you can get off the trail and get lost. Well I arrived around 6 A.M. and it was indeed pitch black. And indeed I got off the trail and got lost. I come up on a ridge of the canyon that suddenly went dark into the abyss. I knew I had to figure this out quickly or I’d lose out getting a good spot. So I stopped panicking, stopped breathing and started listening for voices in the distance. I heard someone and started heading for the sound of their voice and found my way. Within 20 minutes another 20 photographers showed up. I had the coveted spot and held my ground and this was the result of 5 photos taken at different exposures and merged together using Photomatix, processed in Photoshop and Topaz. Please see my gallery for all my photos.