“Rocks & Tower at Big Spring Canyon”

Rocks & Tower at Big Spring Canyon, Canyonlands National Park, SE Utah (c) Mike Utley

Big Spring Canyon, located in Canyonlands National Park in southeast Utah, offers an intimate view of the majesty of the region’s canyon country. It’s a microcosm of the vastness and diversity of the park, sporting canyons, sandstone towers, sheer cliffs, overlooks, and a variety of geological formations. During this particular visit, I caught the late-evening light bathing the landscape in a warm glow as distant storm clouds hovered above the horizon beneath a sheet of cirrus clouds. The multi-layered cloudscape added character to the scene, and the blue sky contrasted nicely with the varied earth tones of the rocks. I like the way the lighter-toned rock in the foreground, replete with lichen whorls, stands out against the darker formations and anchors the scene as the distant brooding clouds ponder the arid landscape. (Canon gear, Fuji Velvia ISO 50)

32 thoughts on ““Rocks & Tower at Big Spring Canyon”

    1. I was thinking the exact same thing as I posted this. It’s interesting how this seems to occur, and I’ve seen it in several other instances when looking through my old images. I really like the multi-layered clouds in this shot. There’s so much going on in the sky. πŸ™‚

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    1. Thanks, Kirsten. It’s amazing the differences in the textures among desert rocks. Some are unusually smooth, while others feel incredibly abrasive. It’s another enigma of the desert. πŸ™‚

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  1. It must take a lot of patience to capture such beautiful shots. Just the right lighting and the perfect position and angle. Again, the rock in the foreground looks like a resting sea lion. I think I’m hung up on them. Haha! It is definitely difficult terrain. And those stormy clouds seem to be carrying a lot of wrath within them. I wouldn’t want to be caught beneath them. A story always seems to be ready to pop out of your images. Great work, Mike! Awesome! Love the colors. πŸ™‚

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    1. Thanks, Terveen. I was lucky that day and was presented with some amazing clouds. They really do seem to portend some unsavory event. Desert rainstorms can be so dangerous due to flash-floods. A storm can be miles away, and still flood your location. It can be risky to go desert hiking in stormy weather, especially in canyons. I do see your sea lion in the rock in the foreground! Thanks as always for your wonderful comments. πŸ™‚

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    1. Thank you, kind Daphny. I’m doing okay. Getting bogged down in “stuff” as usual, but trying to keep a posting schedule, at least. I miss posting poetry so much–I hope I can get back to that soon. And, I’ve fallen behind again in checking out fellow bloggers’ posts and commenting on them, but no worries, I shall return. πŸ™‚ Thanks for your kind words as always. You are most appreciated here. πŸ™‚

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    1. Thanks, Mark. I just checked out some online images of northern Vermont. The difference is staggering, indeed. The cool thing about my area is the close proximity between mountains and desert. The transition zone is rife with farmland. It’s so unusual to be visiting Arches or Canyonlands Nations Parks and see the snow-capped La Sal and Abajo Mountains in the near distance. Such a startling juxtaposition. Thanks for the nice comment as always. πŸ™‚

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    1. Thanks a bunch, Michelle. Canyonlands awaits you (Arches, too)! There’s something about the desert that pulls at me. I suppose its the stark landscape and the silence and the huge, wide-open sky. It’s amazing anything can live in such a place, but life thrives there. Definitely worth the visit (and bring sun screen!). πŸ™‚

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    2. Yeah; I’ve heard some national parks are now on a reservations-only agenda this season, including Arches National Park. Haven’t heard anything about Canyonlands. I hope you can make it there soon. πŸ™‚

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      1. It seems like it. I went on the main site to make reservations and there wasn’t any mention of the first come first serve kind. I could just go for the day if I got up early enough. I think it’s about 2 hours from where I live. I think this Friday, I’m just gonna hike down to the Virgin River and enjoy my time there. πŸ™‚

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    1. Thank you kindly, Filipa. I have a few more desert images I plan on posting soon. I miss these wild places, where the connection with the earth is so profound in its simplicity. A day spent in the desert is a day well-spent. I’ll bring the sunscreen! πŸ™‚

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  2. Pingback: β€œRocks & Tower at Big Spring Canyon” – MobsterTiger

    1. Thanks a bunch, Lamittan. Ah, drying off on those warm sandstones after a swim…it would be delightful…if I knew how to swim! πŸ˜€ Deserts may at first appear to be devoid of much of anything, but in reality they’re bursting with detail and color and texture and personality. I remember the warmth of this day and how gorgeous the clouds appeared in the distance, and how quiet it was. Peaceful recollections, preserved forever. πŸ™‚

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