Monday, March 31, 2008

Opening Act

I just returned from a week in Big Bend. It was a very good week. I had a little bit of everything- sun, clouds, wind, calm, full moon, stars, a few flowers, cactus, javelina, bobcats, etc.

My first day in the Bend was a splendid one where I got to visit Marathon, Alpine, Marfa, and Presidio. After an early supper in Presidio I drove down the river road into Big Bend Ranch State Park. Somehow I was just drawn to watching sunset on the Big Hill. I arrived late in the day, grabbed all my gear and scrambled to the top.

I no sooner got my tripod set up on the edge of the drop into the canyon below when the sun popped below the clouds and lit up the scene like you always hope it does. The view from here is big and stretches from the river below to the distant Chisos. The light was incredible. I was practically jumping for joy-note jumping on the edge of the Big Hill is not a good idea :-).

I made a couple of quick images with the 4x5 and then had to stop and get this image. I am not sure if you can tell from this angle but about 1 foot to the right of my tripod is a several hundred foot drop into the Rio Grande. The light was amazing and I was moving back and forth from one camera to the other. 4x5, SLR, 4x5- it was a lot of activity in a short time on a small ledge. But it was a good day and so I photographed with abandon.

It was quite an opening act and it was only day one! Even better was after the great direct light faded the light show would begin in the other direction as the sky would fill with orange and red. By the time the evening was over I made my way down the hill with several sheets of film in the done box and dozens of images on my memory card.

What a way to end the first day, there would be several more to come. I am always amazed at the glory of the Big Bend country. Today was no exception.

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