Pic of the Week 6/20/19
Location: Canyonlands National Park-Moab, UT
Date taken: 6/22/16
This past weekend I made a trip with my amazing girlfriend to Caprock Canyons State Park. This was Ashlee’s first visit to another great Texas treasure. While it wasn’t the best photography weekend we still had an excellent time. While out scouting for a location to shoot sunset we climbed up a small mesa that gave us a commanding view of the red buttes and rock spires of the canyonlands. The crimson color of the sandstone made me reminiscent of one of my past photo adventures to Utah. And as it turns out, I am closing in on the three year anniversary of my 2016 vacation which took me to New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, and Colorado. In that nostalgic spirit I went digging through my hard drive to find an image that would help me reflect back on that photo expedition.
I had just gotten in to Moab, UT and turned west out of town to reach the Island in the Sky road in Canyonlands National Park. I don’t know what it was, but there was absolutely nobody on this road. Maybe the close neighbor Arches National Park was keeping all the tourists over there. Regardless, I was elated to have this unbelievable wilderness all to myself. I began exploring the park on the Island in the Sky road and couldn’t have thought of a more appropriate name. The road takes you up a mesa 1100 ft above the Colorado and Green river canyons. It is so incredible it doesn’t even look real. My jaw was never closed the entire time I was there. I just sat there drinking in the scenery awestruck.
I knew where I wanted to be for sunset and you can read about that here, but along the way I came to the Candlestick Tower overlook. And as I climbed out of my vehicle I could see the sandstone pillar down in the valley below. I shot a wide angle image of the entire scene, and although the scene was beautiful I wanted to bring more attention and focus to the Candlestick. I went back to my car and grabbed my 70-200mm lens. I zoomed in to the full 200mm and tightened up my composition. As the saying old saying goes; less is more. I framed the shot waiting for the light to improve, unfortunately (and fortunately) the sun fell behind some clouds. While this removed the dramatic side light I was hoping for, it did bring about some beautiful light rays that backlit the Candlestick and Green River canyon. The result is an image that captures the isolation and remoteness of the rugged wilderness. Its hard looking on at scenes like this and not imaging the Wild West bandits or Native American tribes that were established around here. It has been a while since I’ve shot in this area—looks like I’m a little overdue for a visit.
© Ben Jacobi