Snow Canyon Overlook: Spectacular Sunrise

Snow Canyon Utah landscape photography
Two Yucca plants overlooking the majestic SnowCanyon, Utah
Snow Canyon is the closest landscape photography destination for me.  I can almost see my home from this viewpoint.  I came to the Snow Canyon Overlook about a year ago to see what type of photographic potential it had.  After looking things over carefully, I decided it would be a great sunrise location.

This month I decided to wake up at 5 o'clock, make the drive to the parking lot and began hiking up the trail.  It is about 2.5 miles one way.  It is not especially difficult although in the dark, false trails could lead someone astray for a few feet here and there.  I used my headlamp for the first 2 I was getting to the overlook, enough dawn light allowed me to turn off the headlamp.

I was not disappointed with the sunrise.  It was very gradual, very beautiful.  I love the contrast in the white sand, the red rocks and blue sky.  I hope to return here again for another sunrise before too long.
Southern Utah landscape photography Snow Canyon
Snow Canyon Overlook with some Tiny White Clouds
sunrise at Snow Canyon Overlook, Utah
outcropping of rocks above Snow Canyon

Cedar Pocket: Scenic corner of the Arizona Strip

Joshua Tree in Cedar Pocket, Arizona
Joshua Tree at Sunrise in Arizona
I have driven through the Northwest corner of Arizona 1000 times.  On every trip I take to Las Vegas or California I pass through this rugged and dry country.  Sometimes I have seen bighorn sheep.  There's only one exit and it's not in the most scenic portion.

This month I finally decided to spend some good time here.  I found a pull-off into the brush beside the freeway.  Finding a gap in the fence and a faint trail, I figured I am not the only person to ever come here.  It had rained this week and I hoped for some dramatic clouds for the sunrise.

Nature gave me a great scene as sunrise gradually crept across the open valley.  I isolated 1 Joshua tree for my main photographic subject and try to balance that with the red and gray mountain which was catching the morning light.  That was my composition decision.

I ended up having to blend a couple of exposures in photoshop to get the light just right.