Road Trip

December 09, 2018  •  5 Comments

Hill and CloudHill and CloudPetrified Forest National Park, Arizona I could have gone home after taking this photograph. 

It was one of the first scenes I photographed upon arrival in Petrified Forest National Park.  I arrived in northeastern Arizona with still enough light to make a quick run through the park.  Within 30 minutes this cloud was visible from a good distance and I fixated upon it hoping the road would cooperate and bend enough to provide me with a suitable composition.  Seems it did.  After a nine hour drive and 30 minutes of looking I had what will probably be the best image of the trip and, in pure American Tourist style, I took it from the car window parked on the side of the road.  Edward Abbey is spinning. 
Yet, I like it a lot.  It will probably be on my 2018 Twelve Favorites list that I'll post in a few weeks.  I would have gone home then had I known that.  It would have saved me many, many miles, some frustration, muddy boots and jeans, a little disappointment and, of course, money in the form of gas and hotel stays. 
I'll use the next few blog posts summarizing the trials and tribulations of my latest, and what may be my last, long distance road trip.  I've made runs out to the Colorado Plateau for the last 6 years.  Sometimes two trips a year, spring and fall.  This one was too long and too late in the year to be as enjoyable and productive as those in the past.  Lessons learned.  


Wow, quite the reward! It would go into one of my favorites as well.
Todd Henson(non-registered)
I can certainly see why this might be one of your favorites of the year. It's just that sort of photograph.
Cedric Canard(non-registered)
That is truly an excellent shot Joe. Not just for its aesthetics but mostly for what it evokes. As the risk of getting a little Freudian, the sense of Mother Earth is rather strong considering the shape of the mounds (or perhaps it is just me). It is as if she is in a sand bath like those at Ibusuki Onsen in Kagoshima, Japan, but without wearing the traditional yukata. Naked, resting in the heat of the soil, unscorched, for the warmth emanates from her, but shaded all the same by a reverent cloud.
Of course I could be reading way too much into this. Or maybe I have mummy issues ;)
In any case, it is a top shot Joe. Well worth the trouble that followed. After all, all good things come at a cost, sometimes the price has to be paid in arrears :)
It's like you got the cloud to just hover over the mountain. Did you treat the cloud like commanding a dog? Stay!
Yep, That's the Keeper. I know the feeling, should just quit now cuz it won't get no better...but then, you always believe...what if it does?
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