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  #1  
Old 03-30-2007, 05:33 PM
derek3755 derek3755 is offline
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Default USA: Southwest

Hi
I am off to the US for the whole of October, stopping at Yosemite, Death Valley, Escalante, Moab, and Sedona plus a few more places, but the one mentioned i will be there for a few days, so if any of you can recommend any good spots for sunrise, sunset and any good locations that can be shot at anytime of day (not asking much am i - LOL), i would be grateful

Derek
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  #2  
Old 03-30-2007, 08:09 PM
ronners ronners is offline
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Default Re: USA: Southwest

Hi Derek,

I'll be in the Southwest in May - though my trip is confined to the National Parks of Southern Utah, and Monument Valley in northern Arizona. As far as Yosemite is concerned, you could do a lot worse than <A HREF="http://www.trekearth.com/gallery/North_America/United_States/photo12930.htm">Tunnel View at sunset</A>. This one wasn't quite taken at sunset - the best time is after a storm.

Death Valley can be tough for photography. The best places for sunset shots are probably the dunes at Stovepipe Wells, and Zabriske Point. The dunes also work well in the morning - especially if overnight wind has blown away the footprints from the day before.

I haven't been to Escalante, so I can't comment on that one.

Moab gets you close to Arches and Canyonlands. In Canyonlands, a must is a sunrise shot at Mesa Arch. There are a number of good canyon viewpoints which work early or later in the day (I'll hopefully have some examples in late May when I get back from my own trip). A sunset shot of Delicate Arch in Arches National Park is a bit cliched, but not bad to have in your collection.

Finally Sedona. I didn't have much luck there (though to be honest since I was there for an anniversary trip the photography took second place ;). Try taking a hike out on one of the trails south of downtown.

Finally, I got myself a copy of "Photographing the Southwest" by Laurent Martres. You can pick up a copy at <A HREF="http://phototripusa.com">phototripusa.com</A>. It has all the information you could ever need about photography in the southern Utah area.

So like I said, I'll be there in May so I should have some examples when I get back of good places to go.

Cheers,

Ron.
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  #3  
Old 03-30-2007, 11:20 PM
Newair Newair is offline
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Default Re: USA: Southwest

When at Arches National Park, make sure to check out delicate arch at sunset.
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  #4  
Old 04-01-2007, 12:20 AM
belafonte belafonte is offline
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Default Re: USA: Southwest

i highly reccomend going to Arizona, Tuscon or even the grand canyon. the canyon is simply surreal.
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  #5  
Old 04-05-2007, 09:05 PM
derek3755 derek3755 is offline
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Default Re: USA: Southwest

Hi Ron

sorry for the late reply
thanks for the info, i do have copies if Photographing The Southwest vol 1 & 2, both are excellent, i was after comfirmation of some of the places i have chosen, and a bit more guidance for Yosemite and Death Valley, which Laurent doesn't cover in his guides,
I know Death Valley can be tough, to be honest i have not been pleased with much i have taken, they are ok, but nothing i would class as outstanding.
i was really dissappointed with my sand dune photos, only did them at sunset though and there were far too many foot prints for my liking, think i will venture further in next time.
i had planned on Mesa Arch for sunrise, not sure about Delicate Arch yet, although we haven't done it, so could be a possibility.

with regards to Sedona, you could try Derek Von Brieson - http://www.pbase.com/sedonamemories
i am hoping to go out with for a day when i go over

Regards Derek
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  #6  
Old 04-06-2007, 09:16 PM
ronners ronners is offline
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Default Re: USA: Southwest

Hi Derek,

If you're planning to stop in Yosemite, try to leave it as late as possible in your trip. They haven't implemented a no-car policy (yet) unlike Zion, so it can be one long traffic jam in the valley. It's possible that Tioga Pass will be open when you are there - if it is try to venture up to Mono Lake (at the east end of Hwy 120 where it intersects with Hwy 395). Mono Lake can be extremely rewarding for photography if you are prepared to get up very early in the morning (go either to the South Tufa or the Old Marina).

When I was in Death Valley I didn't have a high clearance car (not even close ;) - but if I did I would have tried to make it up to the 'RaceTrack'. If you are renting a car I believe that at least 80% of the roads in Death Valley are unpaved, so to explore you'll need something a bit more sturdy than a Ford Taurus (the typical rental fodder).

One final note. On my last trip to the South West I ended up with a corrupted memory card and lost a whole bunch of images. This time the plan is to backup, backup, then backup again... It's taken me nearly 7 years to get back there, so I'm taking no chances this time.

Cheers,

Ron.
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  #7  
Old 04-07-2007, 02:52 PM
derek3755 derek3755 is offline
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Default Re: USA: Southwest

Hi Ron

we3ll unfortunately Yosemite is at the beginning of our trip, but we are talking end of Sept, so i don't think it will be too bad, last time we were over it was the beginning of sept and it wasn't that bad even then, we are planning on having a few days at Mono Lake, so i do hope Tioga Pass is open, i don't think it generally close until Nov, and yes we will be getting up very early for those sunrise shots of Mono Lake, although i do want to get there around an hour before sunrise this time, last time we got there about 1/2 before and i felt it was a bit late.

we are hiring a SUV, something like a trailbalzer which i am hoping will cope with the road out to The Racetrack, i am hoping to go there for a sunrise and return for sunset, have seen some photos from both times and they both looked worth exploring

i know all about corrupt memory cards, (not that i have had any myself), i work in photographic retail, and the amount of people who come in with problems is a hell of a lot, i will more than likely purchase some storage device before i come over and will be backing up every night, plus i will have quite a few cards with me anyway

regards
Derek
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  #8  
Old 04-11-2007, 08:46 PM
ronners ronners is offline
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Default Re: USA: Southwest

Looks like you are the man with the plan then Derek ;) There are other ways to get from Yosemite to Mono Lake, but in early September you should be OK over Tioga Pass. In the Mono Lake visitor center (highly recommended for photographic inspiration) they have a photo entitled "Why Tioga Pass is closed during the winter" - try to check that out.

In Death Valley, since you are trying to hit certain places at certain times, its probably worth doubling or tripling the time you allow to get there on the unpaved roads. Sunrise at the Racetrack isn't impossible, but will mean driving most of the way in the dark which can be a bit risky. Similarly sunset will mean driving most of the way back in the dark. Somewhere like Bad Water is a better bet for sunrise/sunset because it's just a short walk from the main road. Aside from that, the normal rules apply in Death Valley -

1. Always carry loads of water
2. Hide somewhere inside during he afternoon ;)
3. Use your air-conditioning liberally (my approach was to wind down the car windows and just drive faster ;))
3. If you see a car stopped by the road, stop and check that they are OK

Finally, if you do have memory card issues, there are now a number of potential solutions out there. One that I'm keeping as a backup is PhotoRescue (www.photorescue.com). Hopefully I won't need it.

Cheers,

Ron.
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