Tips for Capturing the Beauty of Red Rock Country
The Moab area is truly a photographer’s paradise, offering a wealth of captivating landscapes waiting to be captured through the lens. With its ever-changing light conditions, the red rock landscapes of Moab present endless opportunities for stunning photography. In fact, the key to transforming an average photograph into an exceptional one often lies in harnessing the power of good lighting.
Moab’s distinctive rock formations, bathed in the enchanting glow of the sun, create a mesmerizing interplay between light and shadow. From the soft hues of dawn to the vibrant colors of sunset, each moment in Moab brings a unique ambiance that can elevate your photography to new heights. The juxtaposition of deep canyons, towering cliffs, and sweeping vistas against the dramatic sky adds depth and dimension to your compositions.
To capture the essence of Moab’s beauty, keep a keen eye on the ever-changing light. The interplay of light and shadow can transform a simple scene into a work of art. The warm, golden light during the golden hour, when the sun is low in the sky, casts a magical glow that enhances the natural hues of the red rocks. Pay attention to the direction and quality of light, as it can dramatically shape the mood and atmosphere of your photographs.
As you explore the Moab area, take the time to scout different vantage points and experiment with composition. From iconic landmarks like Delicate Arch and Mesa Arch to lesser-known gems off the beaten path, Moab offers a vast array of subjects that can ignite your creativity. With patience and an observant eye, you can capture the subtle details, textures, and patterns that make Moab’s landscapes truly extraordinary.
Whether you’re an amateur photographer seeking to refine your skills or a seasoned professional looking for new inspiration, Moab’s ever-changing light and mesmerizing landscapes provide an endless playground for your creative vision. Embrace the power of good lighting, and let the unique beauty of Moab guide you to capture exceptional photographs that will stand the test of time.
National Parks Photographer Frank Lee Ruggles talks about photographing the Moab area, including Arches and Canyonlands National Parks.
Delicate Arch – Not Just for Photographers
Arches National Park attracts over one million visitors annually, all eager to explore its remarkable landscapes. Among the park’s iconic features, Delicate Arch is particularly popular and often surrounded by people. While it’s unrealistic to expect a solitary experience at this world-famous arch, it’s essential to be considerate of fellow visitors. Respect their presence and don’t expect them to move away for your photographs. Remember that not everyone visiting Delicate Arch is a photographer; many simply want to revel in the beauty of this landmark. Embrace the opportunity to capture the arch with people, as they can add scale and perspective to your photos, creating a shared experience.
Don’t confine your creativity to replicating compositions used by countless photographers before you. Arches National Park boasts thousands of arches and vast scenic wonders, inviting you to infuse your unique style and interpretation. If solitude is what you seek, explore less crowded areas such as the hike to Double O Arch, followed by the Primitive Trail, offering spectacular scenery off the beaten path. Just ensure you have enough memory cards to capture all the incredible views that await you. Embrace the diversity and vastness of the park, and let your imagination roam freely.
Delicate Arch is one of the most photographed of Utah’s natural wonders.
View of the La Sal Mountains from the Windows Section of Arches National Park during sunset.
One of the best places to view autumn foliage in the Moab area is in the La Sal Mountains, located approximately 20 miles south of town. Foliage usually starts to change in mid-September and continues into early October. The La Sal Mountain Loop Road is the easiest way to view the foliage change.
The La Sal Mountain Loop Road, suitable for all passenger cars and RV’s, features a wide variety of canyon country scenery. The 60-mile route begins by following the Colorado River along Highway 128. It then approaches the La Sal Mountains via Castle Valley. The route through the Manti-La Sal National Forest offers great views of the 12,000 foot plus peaks and the red rock canyons far below. Completion of the loop brings the motorist back to Moab via U. S. Highway 191.