Archive for the ‘lichen’ Tag

Single-image Sunday: Last of the Light   4 comments

The sun has just gone down over the high prairie of Wyoming.

This was a sunset I shot on the spur of the moment while driving through the South Pass area of Wyoming a couple days ago.  I didn’t realize then that it would be the last time I would see clouds and colorful skies for awhile.  It’s been clear as a bell since, and the weather forecast for the entire western U.S. shows nothing but cloudless skies and hot weather for the foreseeable future.

I almost didn’t stop.  But the light was so nice I couldn’t stop myself from pulling off on the shoulder and running up a nearby slope.  There were low outcrops poking out of the prairie, tilted layers of sandstone covered with colorful lichen. It was the only foreground available in the open rolling terrain of southwestern Wyoming.

South Pass is where Interstate 80 passes over the Continental Divide.  It’s by far the lowest and gentlest pass through the Rocky Mountains in North America.  There are gentle passes to the south in New Mexico, but that is where the Rockies begin to peter out.  South Pass has high rugged ranges both to the south and north.

I usually try to avoid interstates because of the dominance of tractor trailers, the difficulty of stopping when I see a shot, and because they generally pass through boring terrain compared to minor highways.  I made an exception this time and chose South Pass because my van is running very hot on hills and needs to be looked at.  The engine is almost new, so I’m not too happy about it.  I’m headed back to the mechanic.

I hope everyone has had a fantastic weekend.  Have a great week ahead!

Single-image Sunday: Autumn in the Rockies   17 comments

It’s funny how the shortening days have played havoc with my good intentions to do a Friday Foto Talk this week.  But by next Friday it will be different, promise.  This is the area I’ve been hanging around lately.  Because it’s so darn beautiful!  It is an arm of the San Juan Mtns., themselves a part of the Rocky Mountains of southwestern Colorado.  Telluride is just the other side of those mountains.

 I was hoping the aspens would still be going here but I didn’t have very high hopes.  What a great surprise: they were in their spectacular peak!  I’m not one to be on the hotline as far as these things go; I’m sure there’s an app for it.  I’d rather be surprised.  And I don’t want to avoid going to a place I know is lovely, fall colors or not, based only on some narrow-focused recommendation off the internet.

This was captured atop a ridge when the sun finally cleared the storm clouds lingering over the higher part of this range, which is out of view to the left.  I climbed atop this rock and used it and the nice pinyon pine as foreground.  I think this image has everything the Rockies are: rugged mountains, golden aspens, pinyon pines and lichen-encrusted metamorphic rock.

I’ve been exploring this area more completely than I have in the past.  In fact, I’m right now burning daylight!  Since this is my last full day here, I am going to finish this post, stop watching football, and drink the beer I ordered faster than I want to.  Hello golden hour!  Have a great week everyone.


A beautiful morning and fall colors go together well in the mountains of SW Colorado.

A beautiful morning and fall colors go together well in the mountains of SW Colorado.

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