My wife, Margaret and I have made two trips to Death Valley this winter. The second was interrupted by news of the campground closure at Furnace Creek due to spread of the coronavirus. There is spotty internet at Furnace Creek and as we drove back to Mammoth more and more news came into our phones. I knew about the problem, but I had no idea of how bad it had become. Our hearts go out to the world during these difficult times.
During these two visits I was struck by the moods of Death Valley. We were on our road bikes riding during the day. Death Valley is beautiful, but also a bit humdrum and colorless at noon. The magic hours of Alpenglow and the “blue hour” were incredible. I doubt if I’ve been on location with such a big disparity between the day and the “magic” hours. Maybe its also a case of me getting more and more familiar with the terrain, too.
This capture started to become a reality in 2009. Those were the days of a 4x5 camera for me, and while the results were good, a close inspection suggested I take another look. A hiatus of 11 years passed! I glimpsed over on one our rides this time, and it seemed just OK. But as always, I let the “right-side” of my brain be in charge of selecting a location before dawn the following day. Driving over in the darkness the next morning, I had a bit of trouble locating the correct spot. It was not obvious where to park, I made my choice, and was surprised at the potential. It’s rare for me to make captures, or maybe good captures, at dawn without planning in advance, but it worked here.
All the best!