Zion 2011: Day 7

Sunday, November 6, 2011

I awoke to a cold, damp, and windy campground. Dark clouds surged through the canyon, bringing with them the immediate threat of rain. There was no doubt about it — today was going to be wet.

I love the rain. The sight, the smell, and the sound are invigorating to the senses. As a native San Diegan, the novelty of rain never wears thin. During the first rain after a long dry season, it’s not uncommon to see my neighbors standing inquisitively on their front porch — their open palms sampling the first few drops of the wet season.

Unfortunately, my choice of camera equipment is not well suited for working in a rainy environment. My 8×10 is a lousy choice for the rain, and my 6×17 is mediocre at best. Despite the handicap of my equipment, I was willing to shoot in the rain.

Sunrise was mesmerizing, but very short lived. For what seemed like only a minute or two, the upper most reach of the Towers of Virgin was bathed in a brilliant crimson glow.

The light was magnificent, but it lacked a personal connection with me. Many photographers get caught up in trying to capture every moment — but lose sense of the bigger picture. If I do not feel a personal connection with a scene, I am more than willing to enjoy it as a spectator, but not as a photographer.

I spent much of the day scouting nearby maples. Eventually, I settled on a small cluster of trees located just off the road. I used my 4×5 darkcloth as a rain cover for my 6×17, and it worked surprisingly well!

Maples in the Rain | Velvia 50 | Fuji GX617

The intensity of rain picked up as the afternoon progressed. Soon, it was evening, and a slushy mix of rain and ice fell throughout the canyon. The canyon walls high above me were dusted with snow.

I drove through the tunnel to the east side of the park, and found myself in a winter wonderland. The next morning was bound to be magical.

2 Responses to “Zion 2011: Day 7”

  1. bob Says:

    I love the color of the changing seasons

  2. Joshua Warrender Says:

    Beautiful pano shot of the maples, Ben. I was in Zion part of the time you were there too. I think we swapped Subway/Narrows days. First time in the Narrows, certainly won’t be the last! Keep up the great work.

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