Saturday, May 30, 2015

Family Trip - Arches/Canyonlands National Park - Spring 2015

This has been one of the snowiest (and rainiest) springs I can remember.  We were lucky to get in a couple trips over spring break in early April before the bad weather.  I can't remember the last time we've had so many days in a row without seeing the sun!

School is out now and we're ready to climb, but the Colorado high peaks are absolutely CAKED in snow from the last month of storms:

Grand Traverse Peak in the Gore Mountain Range near the town of Vail Colorado covered in snow
Grand Traverse Peak - Vail, Colorado 5/26/15

We decided not to fight the conditions and headed down to Moab for the week.   Cami and I had never been there before and we were long overdue for some family fun time.  These kinds of trips are always interesting with a 2 year old along for the ride.  It can be a challenge, but totally worth it.  Below I've added a couple of my favorite images from our trip.


"Who would believe that rocks can be so beautiful!" - Cami

Panorama of Arches National Park with Balanced Rock Turret Arch and the La Sal Mountains
Arches National Park Panorama

Double Arch:

A couple years ago, I painted a picture that my dad took from inside Double Arch on one of his trips.  The original painting is hanging in one of his rooms:

Acrylic Painting of the view inside Double Arch Arches National Park Utah by Artist Aaron Spong
Double Arch Acrylic Painting - Prints Available

It was cool to go find the exact spot inside the Double Arch that he took his photo from years ago and recreate the scene I had once painted. Yep…it looks about right:

Delicate Arch is the most well known landscape scene in Utah.  It's a fun little hike up to the top with a crowd of people even on a week day in early spring.  We carried KD to the top and waited a couple and a half hours for sunset.  There isn't much room for kids to roam with steep ledges all around the viewing area.  My wife is a very patient woman and was able to entertain our daughter for the entire time while I sat with my tripod waiting for the right shooting conditions.  We all huddled under the umbrella as it rained on us a couple times.  The sun came out briefly about an hour before sunset and never peaked out again that evening.  Just enough time to get a good shot.

Here's my Go-pro time lapse of Delicate Arch in the afternoon. Notice the rain drops on the rock:



Dead Horse Point State Park at sunrise viewing the Colorado River overlook
Dead Horse Point State Park

Mesa Arch:

The Mesa Arch is probably the second most popular place in the Moab area.  I knew I would have to be early to get a good spot Friday morning.  By the time the sun rose, there were about 20 photographers all huddled together in front of the arch.    People were bumping into each other and even arguing and pushing to get the right view.  I think these people need to go back and take a Kindergarden class and relearn the rules for being a person.   This ridiculous behavior would have been enough to ruin the experience for us if the view wasn't so awesome!  These cliche locations are famous for a reason.

Mesa Arch sunrise panorama in Canyonlands National Park Utah with sunburst
Mesa Arch, Canyonlands

To see more images or for fine art print information, visit my Arches/Canyonlands gallery

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