Photography and commentary from John Fujimagari

Posts tagged “USA

Sedona Evening

Sedona Evening

 

Sedona was our last overnight stop on this photo trip before Phoenix and our departure for home. By this time, I was getting a little burned out. It had been two weeks of 12 to 14 hour days, either driving or shooting. I had planned to get out and about to the shoot the sights around Sedona but couldn’t put together the energy to leave the hotel room. This week’s images are a tip for the lazy photographer: Get a great hotel room and shoot from the balcony.

In the best light…


The Edge Of Twilight

The Edge Of Twilight

 

The evening light really brought out the red color in the rocks around Sedona. The vegetation absorbed the light making it look even darker than the bare rock formations that reflected the brightness.

In the best light…


Red Rock Glow

Red Rock Glow

 

Sedona is kind of a magical town, I’m sure that it’s filled with hipsters and all of the trendy people but the area itself and the landscape seem magical to me. The brilliant red rock is everywhere and no matter where you look there’s a great picture.

In the best light…


Before Moonset, Yaki Point

Before Moonset, Yaki Point

 

In order for the moon to be full, it must be on the opposite side of the earth from the sun. So, moonrise happens at sunset and moonset happens at sunrise. Two days after the full moon the moon is still in the sky when the sun is up. The sun is up high enough to reach into the canyon but hasn’t reached the Colorado River at the bottom of the gorge.

In the best light…


Morning In The Canyon

Morning In The Canyon

 

Early or late in the day is when I think the Grand Canyon looks the best. The strong cross lighting highlights the deep crevasses in the rock formations showing the textures and patterns of the strata.

In the best light…


Dawn At The Grand Canyon

Dawn At The Grand Canyon

 

The light comes in hard, the first thing in the morning at the Grand Canyon. When the sun gets above the horizon enough peer deeper into the recesses, it hits the canyon wall creating dark shadows on the formations behind. The early light is very warm looking, giving the coloured rock a deep rich hue.

In the best light…


Across From Vishnu Temple

Across From Vishnu Temple

 

Early explorers in the Grand Canyon must have been hearty souls with a rounded education in foreign religion and mythology. In the center is Vishnu Temple, I believe to the left is Wotan’s Throne. Isis, Osiris, Diana and Jupiter all make appearances in Grand Canyon nomenclature.

On this morning, the sun’s ray are starting to shine down the canyon creating streaks of light. The smaller formation in the canyon is being lit by reflected light from the cliff where I’m standing.

In the best light…


Moonrise Over The Canyon

Moonrise over the Canyon

 

The sun had just dipped below the horizon in the west, and when I turned around the moon had risen above the Kaibab Plateau for the evening. Starting into the Blue Hour the colours were more muted than with the direct sunlight shining on them.

In the best light…


Above The Kaibab Trail

Above The Kaibab Trail

 

Evening falls on the Grand Canyon and it gets dark quickly deep in the recesses. From this vantage point, you can see the Kaibab Trail, one of the main paths to the canyon floor, and the Colorado River far below.

In the best light…


Golden Light On The North Rim

Golden Light on the North Rim

 

The sun sets quickly in Arizona compared to here above the Fiftieth Parallel. The shadows are deep and dark in the interior of the Grand Canyon. Preserving the details in all of that dimness can be a chore. The highlighted formations stand out.

In the best light…


Hikers’ Rest

Hikers' Rest

 

Two hikers take some time out of their day at the Grand Canyon to sit and read in the last of the sun’s rays for the day. The late afternoon light gives off a warm glow on the light coloured rocks.

In the best light…


Canyon View From The Rim Trail

Canyon View from the Rim Trail

 

Meanwhile, back at the Grand Canyon, there is just so much to see and although it is recognizable every shot seems to be different. Taken in the late afternoon, I like the sun highlighting the formations on the opposite rim. It shows off the interesting patterns in the way that the erosion has worked it’s magic on the strata of the canyon.

In the best light…


Morning On The Three Sisters

Morning On The Three Sisters

 

The rich warmth of the early morning sun really saturated the colour in this image. The rocks seem to almost glow with the hues. The horses don’t mind, they are used to it, and go on eating. The horses belong to one of the many families of Navajo that live in Monument Valley, adding to an already colourful scene.

In the best light…


Mancos Valley From 7875ft.

Mancos Valley From 7875ft

 

The road to Mesa Verde National Park leaves the valley floor near Mancos, Colorado and just goes up. There is a view point just before the highway turns inland towards the mesa top. This is part of what you can see from the viewpoint. Like the title says, we are at 7875’ elevation. The near ridge on the right is about 3 miles away and the snow capped peaks on the left are twenty miles distant. The air was cold and the wind brisk but invigorating. A great way to start a visit to another fantastic National Park.

In the best light…


West Fork Little Soda Canyon Before Dawn

West Fork Little Soda Canyon Before Dawn

 

Not being a morning person, you know that when I get up on my own and am out shooting before the sun comes up, there is something special going on. Mesa Verde National Park is an amazing place! I was incredibly well rested, sleeping at over 8000 ft. elevation. The Far View Lodge is very comfortable, but don’t expect things like TV to disrupt your stay. As it was, it was dark by the time we returned to the room after dinner, and little to do but sleep. After I slipped quietly from the room, it was like I had the whole park to myself. Far View does live up to it’s name. It is nearly fifty mile to the distant ridge on the horizon at the right. In the nearer distance, the scrub oaks and other shrubs are starting to turn to their fall foliage.

In the best light…


The Goosenecks

The Goosenecks

 

Slightly off of the beaten path, Goosenecks State Park was a worthwhile stop on our itinerary. It’s a lesser known location than Horseshoe Bend on the Colorado but every bit of a great shooting spot. At home they would be called oxbows and not nearly as deep but here in Utah they have been named the goosenecks. A repeating pattern of back and forth loops like the hard candy you see at Christmas time. I would liked to have gotten more of the river in the foreground but the slope got steeper on the loose shale in front of me, so I took the safer choice of staying where I was. I hope you can see the green of the foliage at the edge of the San Juan River.

In the best light…


Firehole Falls

Firehole Falls 2

 

Taken a few years ago in Yellowstone National Park, I found the falls on the Firehole River to be very picturesque. There are many more things to see in the park than just geysers. A slower shutter speed helps smooth the water into a creamy flow over the rocks in the falls.

In the best light…


Mancos Valley Autumn

Mancos Valley Autumn

 

Down in the Southwest corner of Colorado lies the Mancos Valley. It is situated between Durango and Cortez, near Mesa Verde National Park (our destination this day). This hillside which would be green in the spring and summer, was resplendent in the warm colours of fall.

In the best light…


Lamar Valley Autumn Poplars

Lamar Valley Autumn Poplar

 

On a 2010 trip to Yellowstone National Park, we spent a morning in the Lamar Valley, ostensibly to see if we could spot the Lamar Valley wolf pack. We did catch a distant sighting of wolves but came away with some great landscape shots. It was near the peak of fall colours in that part of the park.

In the best light…


US 163

US 163

One of the more famous spots in movie lore, Forrest Gump Point is in the bottom of the valley at this end of the straightaway. This is where Forrest Gump gives up his cross-country running and wants to go home.

From this vantage point, in the far distance on the extreme left, the Big Indian, to the left and center, the multi-spired Stagecoach, and Brigham’s Tomb on the right.

In the best light…

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The Stones Themselves

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In Monument Valley, the red coloured rocks are quite prominent and the vivid hues are in your face. I thought that removing the colour and presenting the scene in black and white would show the grain and structure of the giant boulders and cliff face. Hopefully the tuft of grasses included at the bottom of the frame gives the image a sense of scale.

In the best light…


Chimney Rock

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This week’s posts are of the American Southwest; from the Four Corners area and Monument Valley. This image is from the side of US Highway 163 just south of the Ute Mountain Reservation in Colorado. This was the one of the first monolith of this type that we had seen on the trip.

In the best light…


Desert Basin

Desert Basin

 

When leaving Newspaper Rock in the Petrified Forest National Park, I noticed a dark spot on the top of a large rock. On closer investigation, I found it to be an indentation about a foot and a half across and six inches deep. I’m not sure where the water came from. The October weather was fairly mild and I don’t know when the last rainfall had taken place.

In the best light…


Sunset Glow On The South Rim

Sunset Glow On The South Rim

 

Continuing our walk on the South Rim trail, the sun was just below the horizon as we arrived at Grand Canyon Village. The trail changes in nature from a narrow path to a wide concrete walkway with a stone wall at the cliff’s edge. The soft glow in the Golden Hour produced magenta pastels in the eastern skies and an even filtered light deep into the canyon itself.

In the best light…