In praise of place: the dry lands (Part 10) — Arches National Park

For the landscape photographer, Arches National Park (near Moab, Utah) sings a siren song that can’t be ignored. Its collection of variously airy and massive sandstone spans is unprecedented in such a relatively small area, with something like 2,000 arches having been thusfar identified there.

South Window

Aside from a singular evening visit (which provided for some outstanding golden-lit results), our trips to the park during last summer’s vacation were made during peak daylight hours. Why? Well, certainly not because that’s the best time to experience the natural wonders of the place.

Solitude, where art thou?

(It’s actually the worst, in terms of both lighting conditions and visitor volume — as anyone who’s attempted to photograph the North Window free of tourists at noontime can tell you.)

Thought balloon, Tunnel Arch

But the inducements to enjoying a leisurely breakfast at the inn, along with those involving a relaxing dinner at the restaurant at the other end of the day, are hard to ignore when on holiday. And so the madding crowd routine sets in.

Cloud like rock

Regardless, it is possible to capture memorable photos in the glaring light of midday with a little creativity in planning and post-process. Hopefully some of these entries will provide food for thought when you find yourself engaging in a similar “mad dogs and Englishmen” agenda.

Buzzard, Landscape Arch


The dead and the living

Cheating! This photo actually was captured at day’s end.


13 thoughts on “In praise of place: the dry lands (Part 10) — Arches National Park

    • Thanks hunting. If the stars align, I’ll be returning this fall for more capturing. (Knock dead wood.)

  1. Cestuji většinou prstem po mapě, tak vidím mnoho míst a sním si o tom, že je jednou uvidím na vlastí oči. Děkuji za krásné obrázky míst, jež jsou pro Evropana tak vzdálená a vytoužená. Anna

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