Arizona Strip & Southern Utah Wanderings | Day 1
Saturday, October 6, 2012
On Saturday morning I left home to begin my annual fall trip to Southern Utah and the Arizona Strip. I met up with Jared in Moab so he could load his gear for the week into my Jeep and then we continued the drive south. Our destination this evening would be another visit to The White Pocket in the Vermilion Cliffs National Monument. As we were driving, we realized that it was exactly one year to the date that we first visited The White Pocket. We didn’t plan it out this way, it just happened by coincidence.
After a quick stop in Page for some dinner we arrived at The White Pocket just a few short hours before sunset. We grabbed our cameras and started exploring this wonderful area. The light was just starting to get nice when we arrived and it only got better throughout the evening. Except for a short time close to sunset when one other person showed up for a little while, we had the place to ourselves.
If you love strange sandstone formations, this is the place for you!
Here’s a long ‘wave’ bathed in warm afternoon light.
Great views all around…
One of my favorite features to photograph here.
There were plenty of nice clouds around sunset that turned a nice shade of pink. Here they are just starting to change color…
An amazing sunset to start the trip out right.
These last four photos are all shot from the same location looking at the popular feature known as The Swirl, and I’m including them all just to show you how much the light can change the scene over the course of about an hour near sunset.
This first photo was taken shortly before the sun went down while the warm light was still directly striking the sandstone.
This second photo was taken just after the sun dipped below the horizon. There were some nice clouds in the sky.
Sometimes after the sun sets, there is a short period of reflected pink light that really adds color to the scene. We got lucky on this evening and the pink light was pretty strong. While you can see this ‘glow’ with your eyes, it is not quite as dramatic as it will show up in longer exposures.
Finally, the pink light has all but disappeared in the scene, but the formation is still receiving a nice glow that shows up in long exposures. It is not visible to the naked eye.
When the twilight glow was finally gone, we hiked back to the Jeep and setup our camp for the next two nights. We planned on getting up very early the next morning, so we went to bed as soon as our tents were up.