Monday, July 17, 2017

06/11/17 Canyonlands National Park

On June 10th, I traveled from Oljato-Monument Valley, UT to Moab, UT to return to Canyonlands National Park. I spent the afternoon photographing some of the park before finding a hotel for the night. The next morning June 11th, I packed up all my gear and drove to Canyonlands National Park again to photograph Mesa Arch at sunrise knowing I was going to be traveling later to Cheyenne, WY during the afternoon. Just before sunrise, I arrived at Mesa Arch to setup my camera and tripod. The crowd soon followed as we all awaited for the much anticipated sunrise. We were all rewarded with our patience with a stellar sunrise which made for a good hour worth of photography.  After that, I began making my way back out of the park. I ended up stopping a few times along the drive outside the park to snap a few more photos before heading into Colorado. I shot all these photos with my Canon 5D Mark III and Canon 16-35mm f/2.8 II L lens. I've added photos from the two days I was hiking and photographing in the park below:

The much anticipated "orange glow" on this morning at Mesa Arch!
Waiting patiently...
Even without the sun making an appearance thus far the lighting was great!
"When darkness begins to turn to light"
Wide-angle shot at sunrise of Mesa Arch!
This is what we all were patiently waiting for...
 After exiting the park I found some dramatic landscapes...
 A bridge over the Colorado River in Moab, UT
 The morning sun-angle bringing the desert landscapes to life!
 Canyons as far as the eye can see!
 The cirrus clouds that moved overhead really added more to the photo!
"Desert life"
"Canyons and more rocks"
A walk across the Colorado River was pretty cool!
I was glad I stopped to shoot some more landscapes!
The southwest is such a great region of the U.S.  for photography!
More scenic views...
Wilson Arch on the way to Moab, UT
One last shot before driving north to I-70...

Overall, these were another productive couple of days of photography. I was quite happy waking up before sunrise on this day to say the least. I had a long and grueling drive ahead of me where I would later travel to Sidney, NE for what looked to be a great day to chase storms and potential tornadoes on June 12th.  I'll add that post in the coming days.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

06/10/17 Monument Valley

A wide-angle shot at sunset of Monument Valley outside Oljato-Monument Valley, UT

On June 9th, I began the drive from Page, AZ to Oljato-Monument Valley, UT to photograph Monument Valley. I arrived around mid-day and scoped out the location for points of interest for photography later in the evening. I relaxed most of the afternoon at Monument Valley in the summer heat waiting for sunset. This is a really cool place if you haven't been here before and many movies have been filmed in this area including Forrest Gump and National Lampoon's Vacation. On this day, I ended up enjoying a stellar sunset that provided some rich-colors during the late evening. Once when I was beginning to lose daylight after sunset I ended up going to my hotel to rest up for an early morning of photography the next day. On June 10th, I woke up just before sunrise and drove about 15-minutes to Monument Valley from my hotel. Sunrise was absolutely awesome to witness on this morning as the colors really seemed to "pop" despite the lack of high-level clouds. I would also later in the morning photograph "Forrest Gump road" on my way north through Utah as well. I shot all these photos with my Canon 5D Mark III and Canon 24-105mm f/4.0 L IS lens. I've added another large assortment of photos from the two days of photography below:

Amazing color at sunset at Monument Valley
Sunset sure didn't disappoint and was worth the wait for the golden-hour light!
Hello Utah...
Goodbye Arizona...
 A unique landscape!
 Early afternoon hunting for landscapes!
"Against the wind"
"Light me up"
 "Forever southwest"
 This is an amazing place to photograph in the southwest U.S.
 "Navajo hut"
Don't forget to shoot vertical on some occasions...
 A beautiful southwestern landscape!
 "Golden monuments"
 "The American west"
 "Let light be your guide"
 A surreal location to photograph!
 Even during the afternoon you can manage some good landscape-shots!
 "Light transitioning to dark"
 "Desert landscape"
 June summer heat and haze adding to the photogenic landscape!
Some of these shots were harder to come by especially trying to get them without any cars in the foreground...
 I tried something different with this shot including and focusing more on the foreground...
 "Golden-hour arrives"
 If you look close to the right you can see a barren patch of ground. This is actually where part of Back to the Future Part: III was filmed early-on in the film!
 Beautiful landscapes!
 "The valley"
 Another vertical-shot!
 "Sandstone butte"
I got lucky here with the position of the sun in the sky near sunset during this time of the year...
More sandstone...
A wide-angle shot of the valley!
"Butte illumination"
Sunrise at Monument Valley!
"Summer morning haze"
"I had a dream I stood between an orange sky"
The golden-hour light and haze was quite photogenic!
"Shadows coming to life"
I love the color in this landscape!
"The sun will rise"
 Morning light filters into the valley...
I love this shot with the hazy background!
Another epic morning landscape!
I kept moving my location to get the sun behind the monument for a few shots to allow enough light to split to the left and the worked pretty well!
More creativity with the sun...
I pity the souls that slept-in on this morning as they really missed out!
"Shoot the gap"
The sun is getting a tad too high now...
A picturesque morning!
A mid-morning landscape!
 "Sandstone and morning light"
Another landscape shot...
"The southwest"
More interesting landscapes...
One more shot as I continue traveling north the remainder of the day through Utah...

These were another productive and fun couple days of photography! I finished this day traveling to Moab, UT and visiting Canyonlands National Park once again for a couple days of photography as well. I'll be including photos from those two days in an upcoming post.