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Smoke Settling into the Canyon

Normally, this view goes on just about forever.

A devastating wildfire season on the west coast gave us a much different view, with smoke settling into the canyons and giving everything a weird, muted look. (This was shot at mid-day.) But you know how I am: at least the situation gave me something different than the usual shots of bright blue skies, vivid red rocks, and a blue-green river, and I wasn’t too disappointed about that. “Anyone can get those shots,” I said to myself in a tone that was probably too smug for the actual situation.

But what I learned is that from a photographic standpoint, smoke doesn’t really add that much to an image. And I was reminded to stop being so damn smug, already.

Dead Horse Point State Park, Utah
photographed 9.7.2020

Two Ships

The majestic rock formations were made blurry by the thick plume of smoke that had drifted from the west coast.

(They are called the Monitor and the Merrimac, decidedly Eurocentric titles for a region that was inhabited by the ancient ones for sort of a while before Europeans arrived to re-name everything.)

near Moab, Utah
photographed 9.7.2020

Open Range

As much as we loved the Palouse, we did have to go home.

The day we drove from Park City, Utah, to Farmington, New Mexico, was a day of extremely smoky skies; the smoke obscured almost all of what was there to look at. But if I’d been enchanted by the natural scenery, there’s a chance I would have missed this cast-off stove beside the railroad tracks.

near Moab, Utah
photographed 9.7.2020

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