This summer we had my wife’s sister visit us from Germany. This gave us an opportunity to sneak in a week long road trip through Utah into Nevada.
After hours of deciding what we thought would be the best National and State parks to visit, we finally selected Bryce Canyon, Zion, and the Valley of Fire (one of my personal favorites). Later that night we set voyage to reach Bryce Canyon National Park by sunrise.
The moment we left I-70 a shimmer of light began to brighten up the sky and before I knew it I was driving alongside the rising sun. The day before had brought rain to this part of Utah, allowing for all the ranches to have a light blanket of fog. I’ve seen many sunrises around the world, but this truly was amazing.
We arrived shortly after in the park, and to my liking – I didn’t have to hike very far to see a spectacular view. Although some photographer’s would argue – I think Sunset point was a fantastic place to see the morning sun as it captured the warmth and vibrant colors in the rock structures.
After an hour or so of walking around steep gravel paths on the edge of cliffs, we decided to head towards Zion National Park.
As we entered the park, it lacked the “wow” factor. After heading towards the visitor’s center, we quickly were reminded why this was a national park. We entered a cave/tunnel which was rather boring and dark but at every “window” we saw such an amazing view as we were driving in the canyon wall. Although we only stopped a few times, we were able to capture the late morning light and dramatic mountains.
We stopped off in Overton, NV and a few days into our trip decided to visit Valley of Fire. I’ve been there before, but mostly have rushed through the park and this last visit only had a simple Sony Cybershot which limited my ability to get high quality photos.
This trip to the park was different as I had my Canon and we planned to visit prior to dusk allowing us to capture some of the desert sunset. Nature was on our side by giving us some small clouds in the sky to reflect the sunlight. We stayed on the White Domes trail until it was dangerously dark, and although I didn’t have a tripod in hand, the rocks provided a great stable platform for the low light photos.
For those of you looking for a fun road trip with beautiful scenery I REALLY recommend going to all of these parks. Not to mention the drive is always spectacular no matter the time of day.