Tag Archives: red rock

Trails I’ve Hiked: Delicate Arch Trail, Arches National Park

Ok, time for you to push away from the spreadsheets and PowerPoint presentations and think about your next vacation. How about a trip to a national park? And how about a hike on an iconic trail? You know, there are some trails in some national parks that are almost a requirement to hike before you can say you’ve actually visited that park. In this case, it’s the Delicate Arch Trail at Arches National Park in Utah.

The National Parks Traveler has published my article about this trail as part of the Traveler’s “Trails I’ve Hiked” series. Why not take a break and check it out.

Click on the image above to read the article.

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Filed under Arches National Park, National Parks, National Parks Traveler, Trails I've Hiked

Do You Sometimes Wish You Could Return To Re-Photograph A Particular Scene?

I look back as some of my photos and wish I could revisit a particular landscape and capture the same scene with my newer-model cameras (bear in mind, newer-model also includes the high-megapixel Canons I’ve had since 2016). Dead Horse Point State Park in Utah is one such place, and this is one such scene.

I photographed this landscape back in 2013 (8 years ago – has it been that long – or that short – of a period of time??). The February winter midday light was harsh, but the distant snow/rain storm was pretty cool. I’d like to go back and see how much more detail and dynamic range my current cameras could pick up. Maybe someday, I’ll do just that.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under Photography, Travel, Utah

Fairyland Canyon Scenery

Fairyland Canyon Landscape, Bryce Canyon National Park (Utah)

I’ve been working on a series of short articles for the National Parks Traveler, titled “Traveler’s Checklists.” These are bulleted lists with tips on what to do, where to go, where to stay, what to eat, etc. for national parks and other protected lands I’ve visited. I’ve finished three already (Redwood National and State Parks, Big Bend National Park, Padre Island National Park) and each one is scheduled to show up weekly on a Wednesday.

I’m now working on my 4th Checklist, which deals with Bryce Canyon National Park. I’ve already found the images I’ll use for this Checklist, but as I was perusing the files, I noticed a number of images I have never worked on and thus never posted. So, I thought I’d do a little photo editing today, in addition to writing.This image was captured during my short hike along the Fairyland Loop Trail, in Fairyland Canyon, a separate amphitheater in Bryce Canyon National Park.

My one regret is that I never completed the 8-mile loop trail – I only hiked parts of it. Someday, when I return to this national park, I’m going to make it a priority to actually finish hiking the entire damned trail. It’s a well-maintained trail, and all I need to really remember (aside from bringing camera gear) is to take plenty of water. It doesn’t matter whether it’s hot or cold out there – the dry atmosphere will suck the moisture from your body in the blink of an eye before you even realize you might be dehydrated.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under Bryce Canyon National Park, National Parks, Photography, Travel, Utah

Withstanding Time And The Elements In Zion National Park

Withstanding Time And The Elements

I may be an SLR gal, but I freely admit that point-and-shoots are great at capturing national park images, too. When I am out in the parks, I always carry one of my two little point-and-shoots in my pocket. They are not only backup in case the photographic unthinkable happens, but they are great at getting macro shots.
This photo of a ponderosa pine growing atop a cross-bedded red-rock knoll (probably a little lithified sand dune) and framed by other trees, was captured with my Canon GX7 MkII. While it’s not the most sturdy of cameras around the lens area (the dainty little shutter blades that made up the “lens cap” and opened and closed when the camera was powered on and off broke off when the camera accidentally fell out of my vest pocket. Thankfully, it still works and I purchased a push-on lens cap to protect the lens.
So, don’t knock the point-and-shoots. They produce some nice little images, too.
Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under Canon, Equipment, GX7 Mk II, National Parks, Photography, Point and Shoot, Seasons, Travel, winter, Zion National Park

Sunrise Over Bryce Amphitheater

Sunrise Over Bryce Amphitheater

Sunrise in this national park is sublime, no matter whether it’s a sunny day, an overcast day, or an in-between kind of day.

And now, in addition to sunrises being sublime, so are night skies, since this national park has been certified an International Dark Sky Park.


The park’s 20th Annual Astronomy Festival will be June 17-20, 2020. I’ve made my reservations for a room during that time. Maybe then, I’ll actually stay awake late enough to get some cool night shots, since I didn’t do that during my previous two visits (sigh). I readily admit that Bryce Canyon is one of my favorite national parks.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved


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Filed under Bryce Canyon National Park, Canon, Canon Lens, Geology, Landscape, National Parks, Photography, Seasons, summer, sunrise, Travel

Splendid Isolation

Splendid Isolation

It was indeed splendid isolation that day. I stood on the Rim Trail between Inspiration and Sunset Points, all by myself, feeling the breeze in my face and enjoying the vast view. It was the monsoon season and the “thunderbumpers” were moving swiftly toward my area. I knew I needed to hightail it back to the lodge, like all the other sensible people were doing, but I kept having to stop to capture a photo of the scene. I did finally make it back to the Sunset View Point just as the rain began to pummel people still out there. I jogged over to one of the cabins to stand underneath the roof of the cabin’s patio as the rain, thunder and lightning continued. Of course, I was soaking wet already, but at least I was out of the elements. It’s never a good idea to be standing in a thunderstorm because of the lightning strikes, which occur with regularity in the high, exposed altitudes. 

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.


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Filed under Bryce Canyon National Park, Canon, Geology, Landscape, National Parks, Photography, Seasons, summer, Travel, weather

Getting Close To The Edge

Getting Closer To The Edge

Close to the edge at Scouts Lookout, Zion National Park, Utah

There have been more than a few times when I’ve gotten “close to the edge,” but that’s been a 9-to-5 work thing as opposed to literally being close to the edge as in this shot.

I have a fear of heights. Of course, this generally doesn’t stop me, as you can see in this photo; when I am focused on photography, my fear dissipates. However, this mild acrophobia gives me a healthy awareness of my abilities and limitations, since I have rheumatoid arthritis and also am not the most sure-footed of creatures. In this instance, I stopped at Scouts Lookout and did NOT finish that last .5 mile to Angels Landing. I knew my physical limitations (mental ones, too) and knew I could not go any further with all the stuff I was lugging with me. And I was (and am) totally fine with that. I still remember my legs shaking just a little bit, from both the uphill climb as well as the fact that the rocks tilt a little bit in the Scouts Lookout area and it’s a lonnnnnng way down. Heck, I was thrilled I’d made it that far, having come from sea level elevation 2 days prior.

Moral of the story:  you may not always be able to (or want to) reach the very end, for whatever reason, but that doesn’t mean you can’t come away with some cool experiences/photography along the way there and back.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under National Parks, Photography, Travel, Zion National Park

Twisted and Weathered With Time

Bent Over With Time

Feeling a little twisted and bent out of shape from the workweek? Never fear, the weekend is right around the corner (unless, of course, you have to work this weekend – in which case, try to weather through it) ):

This little tree – a bristlecone pine, I think – and it’s deep red-orange sandstone perch just off of the Zion-Mount Carmel Road in this national park – is rather famous. I’ve seen it in a number of images on Flickr. I saw it for the first time as I was returning to the Zion tunnel, after a photo op stop at Checkerboard Mesa. I would have missed this tree completely had I not turned my head at just the right time to look out over the landscape. This tree and sandstone knob called out to me and I found a pullout at which to park, then walked back along the road and out into the landscape to photograph different perspectives. Trees speak to me and this one was particularly verbose (grin).

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.



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Filed under National Parks, nature, Photography, Travel, winter, Zion National Park

Good Morning! It’s Monday!

Sunrise On Sunrise Point

A wide-angle view of sunrise at Sunrise Point in Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah

Good morning, folks! It’s Memorial Day, a day here in the U.S. when we remember those men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military. It’s not only a day for reflection and thankfulness and perhaps a visit to the resting place of a loved one, but also a day to get out (if you can) and enjoy the wonders of our environment, or maybe attend a baseball, soccer or basketball game, enjoy a picnic (if the weather cooperates), or go to a movie (I hear good reviews for the new movie “Solo”).

If you are unable to have this day off, then perhaps you can console yourself by enjoying this image while drinking your morning beverage.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under Bryce Canyon National Park, Geology, Holidays, Memorial Day, National Parks, Photography, sunrise

Anticline Overlook, Utah

Anticline Overlook Map

I’ve been remiss about “feeding the beast” and making regular weekly contributions to my site (and don’t even ask me about the reading catch-up I need to do with my favorite blogs).  It’s the holiday season and I’ve been involved with other  photo business, which has kept me occupied with non-blog issues.  I now have enough vacation to take every Friday off for the remainder of the year, so hopefully these 3-day weekends will give me more time to catch up on  the blogosphere.

As previously promised, this article is not about any camera/lens comparisons.  Instead, I want to tell you about  an interesting, somewhat out-of-the-way viewing area I visited en route to Moab, Utah.

During the planning stages of my Mesa Verde NP / Arches NP trip this past August 2012, I was looking at Google Maps and noticed a side road off of Hwy 191 (the road to Moab), with the title “Needles / Anticline Overlooks”.  An anticline!  Yeah!  I like geology.  I have a couple of degrees in geology, as a matter of fact.  I’d LOVE to see an anticline.  So I added that to my itinerary.

The route to Anticline Overlook is a 31-mile, 2-lane (more or less) road – 16 miles of which is on gravel .  It’s a well-tended gravel so I didn’t worry too much about driving the rental car along the road (I should have taken a photo of how dusty the car looked upon my return to the main highway).

Where the paved portion ends and the gravel begins, you have the choice of turning left to the Needles Overlook or continuing on to Anticline Overlook.   I decided to save Needles for another time.

B5A6564_Prong Horn Antelope

This prong horn antelope was standing in the middle of the road, but by the time I stopped the car and grabbed the camera, it had sauntered off, totally ignoring me and my pleas to look my way for a portrait shot.

The ultimate destination ends in a loop, with plenty of room for parking and a nice little pit toilet.  A short trail leads to the overlook, with views  northwest, north, and northeast.  The view is expansive and the air fresh and clear.

C2C7648_Trail To Anticline Overlook


Some thorny bushes along the path.  Wouldn’t want to get tangled in this stuff!

B5A6587_Solar Evaporation Ponds for Potash

Solar evaporation potash ponds near the Colorado River.

C2C7659_Anticline Overlook Vista

C2C7683_Located North

C2C7676_Cane Creek Canyon

Looking north toward Dead Horse Point and Canyonlands NP.  The Kane Creek Anticline is to your left.  The Colorado River meanders its way from the left of the photo over to the right of the photo.

B5A6589_Anticline Overlook View

B5A6653_Ribbon Of Road

A dirt road winding through the canyon landscape.

B5A6595_Tilted Beds

Tilted beds.

C2C7696_Kane Creek Canyon

C2C7653_Kane Creek Canyon CROP

Kane Creek Canyon, to the northeast.

B5A6643_Within Kane Creek Canyon

A view within the canyon.

C2C7714_The Road Back to Hwy 191

Heading back to the main highway and then on to Moab.

B5A6657_Antelope In The Distance

Prong horn antelope in the distance as I leave Anticline Overlook.

If you are traveling Hwy 191 Utah –  north to or south from Moab – and your vehicle  can handle the gravel, this is a neat side trip for a great view of Utah’s canyon lands and geology.


Filed under Geology, Photography, Travel