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Another Week at the Colorado National Monument

Monday – Sunday, January 14-20, 2013

Over the past week I’ve spent a few days photographing the Colorado National Monument again. I stopped by after work a few days, caught a sunrise another day, and drove through the entire park after a morning spent along Rifle Creek. Basically, whenever I had a little free time, I was there. I actually spent a few days concentrating on one small arch that I photographed in a few different kinds of light. It’s amazing how different things can look based on the time of day and the weather.

One evening I caught the Earth’s shadow over Red Canyon.

Red Canyon by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Another evening the Grand Mesa lit up at sunset.

Pink Mesa by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

A small tree growing out of the sandstone.

Sandstone Tree by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

I visited this small arch in No Thoroughfare Canyon after the sun had set behind the cliffs. I would photograph this arch a few more times in different light over the next few days.

Lower Arch by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Sunset the following day at the arch.

No Thoroughfare Sunset by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

A closer look.

Arch Light by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Light strikes the walls on the opposite side of the canyon.

Winter Sunset by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Rim Rock Drive snakes it’s way up Fruita Canyon.

Fruita Canyon Road by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Monoliths from the Monument Canyon viewpoint.

Monument Canyon View by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Saddlehorn on the mesa in the distance.

Saddlehorn View by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

The Kissing Couple lit up nicely.

Kissing Couple by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

A view from Artist’s Point including the Grand Mesa and Mount Garfield.

Artist’s Point View by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Rim Rock Drive follows the rim of the canyon.

Rim Rock Drive by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

View over The Highlands.

The Highlands by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Sunset at Cold Shivers Point.

Cold Shivers Point by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Cold Shivers Footprints by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Rim Rock Drive descends into No Thoroughfare Canyon with Devil’s Kitchen lit up below.

Yes Thoroughfare by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Back at the arch again, this time in the dawn.

Dawn Arch by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Looking up No Thoroughfare Canyon during the pre-dawn ‘glow’

No Thoroughfare Dawn by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

The arch in the shadows while the cliffs in the distance are bathed in light.

Rim Light Arch by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

The rim of the canyon is lit up in the early morning light.

Rim Light by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

Finally, the arch is in the light.

Arch in the Sun by IntrepidXJ, on Flickr

>> Twilight at Red Canyon Photo Gallery
>> No Thoroughfare Photo Gallery
>> Colorado National Monument Photo Gallery
>> No Thoroughfare Sunrise Photo Gallery


  1. Boomer
    Boomer February 10, 2013

    Brilliant work Randy !! I love your adventures and captures. I’m stuck in ugly Denver, but my heart belongs to the backcountry of western Colo. and rimrock of Utah. I appreciate the efforts you make to get these great captures. I’m an old film guy looking to take the leap into the digital realm. Could you send me a private mail revealing the lens you use to get the great sunstar effects? Stay safe out there and look forward to your future trips.

    • Randy Langstraat
      Randy Langstraat February 18, 2013

      Thanks Boomer, I appreciate the comment! I get those sunstars with my favorite ultra-wide lens, the Canon 16-35mm 2.8 II, stopped down to f22. The sunstars were a big reason I purchased this lens 🙂

  2. Susan Dealy
    Susan Dealy March 14, 2013

    Your photography is beautiful.

    I’m off next week so I think that I’ll just take off in my car to Page, AZ where I haven’t been in 15+ yrs. to photograph Lake Powell, Antelope Canyon, horseshoe bend, and maybe even the Grand Canyon or Zion. Are you or do you know of anyone headed out that way starting this weekend that might enjoy meeting up to shoot together? Do you have any tips for me about photographing the area?
    Thanks, Susan Dealy from San Diego

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