There is something special about traveling by oneself. Of course there can be times of loneliness and solitude but the freedom to do/go/feel whatever one wants at that time is truly freeing. On my 4th full day I photographed sunrise in Arches National Park and then started my journey across the southern part of the state. Through Cedar Mesa and over toward Escalante. The remoteness and dramatic landscape is not to be underestimated. Truly spectacular country. Amazing spires and rock formations around every corner. Roads winding through canyons, bending around corners to reveal another infinite expanse to explore.
As I came around yet another bend, after crossing the Glen Canyon area I noticed these rocky spires in the distance. Speeding by there was some interesting, undulating rock just off the road that caught my eye and thought to myself there must be a good photograph in there somewhere, so on the the brakes I went, pulling over in to one of the few primitive camping areas that dotted the side of the road. Getting out to explore, then driving down the road back a ways and repeating. Wandering around I found this ravine, with amazing undulating and textured rock pointing right at the spires that had made me pull over in the first place. Looking down the rock suddenly jumped out at me. Light from the other side of the ravine was being reflected back on to the rock below me creating this incredible glow. Taking out my phone I snapped a quick photo to see what was going on. Boom! Next thing I knew I was hurrying back to the car to grab my camera bag. I spent the next 3-4hrs exploring this 100 yard stretch of rock. Studying the textures, lines, nuances. Playing with the light as it changed. As the shadow from the large canyon wall towering over me to the west finally encompassed the scene I had that familiar joyful feeling. The kind one can only get by having that serendipitous, ephemeral experiences that come from pulling off the side of road spontaneously in the middle of nowhere 🙂
Another trip to California in the books…and this one did not dissapoint 🙂 While I photographed a few places, the Shasta area was my target again. And after the recent storms, had completely transformed to it’s winter coat. Amazing to see. Of course, it was MUCH colder than the last time I visited in August which kept me thinking if I had brought the right clothes for the job. Admittedly I am a winter person. My body runs warm. I love playing in the snow and skiing. The cold air in the nose. Fresh. Tingling. The quite. It’s just a special time of year. How and why I ended up in a tropical paradise…I can only say that the universe knows better than I do 🙂
While there were LOTS of incredible photos taken I offer you up the story of a special sunrise I was able to capture…please enjoy 🙂
445am alarm at hotel.
Get out to car…thick frost already over everything…it’s cold alright. Drive about 30min up to the trailhead on a frost covered road. Arriving in the parking lot there’s snow…in fact there’s a nice ground cover over the entire landscape. And it’s cold. Standing there in the dark I wonder what the hell am I doing up here? It’s completely dark, approx 25F and this hike will be completely in the snow. And there is wildlife out there…where…I have no idea, but that always enters the back of my mind. Well, this is what I’m here for. I just hope I stay warm as I hike up to 6k feet.
There’s something quite remarkable about hiking in the dark. Our surroundings merely include what our headlight illuminates, leaving the reset of the world a mystery. Then of course there are the forest noises. Which, thanks to the snow, are fairly minimal. I do love winter, a lot. No silence quite like it.
Having attempted this trail in August (and getting redirected lets call it) I was happy to follow the footprints of others that had already made the snowy trek. And to my surprise I was both warm and making great time. So much in fact that I arrived at the lake, (which was of course frozen over, so no reflections), before sunrise.
An even better surprise, the high cirrus glowing absolutely radiantly directly behind Mt. Shasta. Standing up on the ridge alone taking in the light and experience it makes that parking-lot-decision all worth while 🙂
To see more images from this incredible sunrise and some truly remarkable sunset (with reflection!) photographs please contact any aFeinberg Gallery or email us for more info 🙂