Finally, a REAL snowstorm! We got over a foot of snow. It clung to the trees and weighed down her heavy branches, coated the forest, and drifted along the roads. There is something so beautiful about fresh fallen snow.
The animals came out to enjoy the cool, refreshing white powder. As did we, following animal tracks and plowing new ground along our unplowed roads.
The accompanying wind blew snow in every direction as the storm took hold and wouldn’t let up.
By the next day, we had some real accumulation and forecasts for more. Bring it on! We can use all we can get, as the snow feeds our animals, our forest and her trees, and our rivers and lakes. Without it, our environment and animals are at risk. Let it snow!
With our monsoons brewing, this is a great time of the year to capture awesome clouds and weather.
So we headed out to the Rim to see if we could capture some interesting photos. While we were actually thinking we would get fog after the previous day’s rain. We were just greeted with more rain, and a few elk.
We always consider it a gift whatever we might get. No matter what, it’s always a good day out and beautiful trek through the forest.
The Mogollon Rim is probably one of our favorite places. It is not far from where we live, and offers exceptional views and a myriad of roads to explore.
One of our favorite vantage points we have dubbed, ‘Tree Saddle’. It was never more spectacular than after a heavy dousing of frigid rain. We stuck it out and were rewarded with amazing skies.
Funny, I feel I must caveat some of these photos… yes the sky was that red and magical, it was not ‘photoshopped’. I was giddy with joy for this tremendous sky as it rolled in and turned bright red. As a boater, I was reminded of the old adage, ‘Red skies at night, sailor’s delight. Red sky in the morning, sailor’s warning.’
While the views along the rim itself are stunning, the forest roads along the rim are equally beautiful.
When the fog rolled in the following morning, we wandered the forest roads capturing eerie fog pix.
I was completely soaked and freezing as clouds went from great photos to completely enveloping me as I got doused trying to get one more pic. While weather can be cold and uncomfortable, it does make more intriguing photos. It was absolutely worth it, and euphoric to be in the presence of such amazing views.
My friend, Maureen, recently asked me which is better – gray skies or blue.
Hmmm. As in all things… it depends.
I love the dark clouds of an oncoming storm. It adds such great interest to a photo. Gray clouds are an entire different matter. They can create a washed out dull photo. In those situations it may be best to just cut the sky out of the photo altogether and enjoy the absence of a gray washed out sky.
Blue sky on the other hand can be very harsh and lend no interst to the sky… no drama or interest.
It’s as they always say … dawn & dusk are the best.
Those times yield the best low lighting on your subject casting a nice soft glow.
Weather can yield the best photos. Dark, bloomy clouds add depth. But if it’s just gray and overcast it can create a bad photo day. Watch for the weather. Embrace it, and take advantage of the weather… it often adds more than less.
Arches, while aptly named with memorable arches to view and walk amongst, is so much more. It is multiple spires, hoodoos if you will, large canyons and seas of rock formations jutting out of the valley floor… and arches.
Arches true colors shine at sunset when the colors turn a brilliant unreal orange-red.
The rock pillars radiate as if they were on fire, taking on an other worldly glow. It makes you stop dead in your feet just to take it in. It comes like a storm, lights up the world, then without pause or hesitation it disappears behind the horizon until it comes back tomorrow.
For me, I’m just happy to be witness to it’s grandeur and share in it’s awesome beauty.
We’ve only lived in the mountains with the snow for a few years (4 years this year). So we are still trying to figure out the weather patterns and such. I have no idea how you know when the snow is over, and Spring is on the way. But then neither do the weather forecasters.
We got our last snow just last week, on Groundhog Day of all things.
But since that snow, the animals have been coming out of hiding. We have seen deer and elk in the community, in the forest, and on the roads.
As I type this, I’m watching this little bunny hopping around our front yard looking for food. The chipmunks and squirrels are active… and the birds are coming back. The ground is alive with blue jays and the occasional yellow bird even.
Yesterday we saw several wasps and bees make their first appearance.
We may have another dusting of snow still this winter… but it sure seems like the animals know something the rest of us don’t… Spring is coming.