April and I took off after Christmas on a roadtrip to Northern AZ and Southern UT. The plan was to hit up a bunch of spots I’ve been wanting to photograph. Intially we hooked up with Harley Goldman and Laurent Baig for a trip to the Coyote Buttes of the Vermillion Cliffs Wilderness. We knew it was was winter and it would be cold, but boy were we in for a surprise. The first night we saw as low as -3F and the pipes froze in our camper. Also, what a trip to expect red rock, instead to find a vast blanket of snow in the desert. Unfortunately(or fortunately?) all the cliche photo ops and interesting rock formations were covered in snow, making photography difficult. Alas, we did find a little bit of snow free rock, we just had to search to find it.

Harley and Laurent had already been in the area for a few days so they decided to warm their bones and head west for the Mojave National Preserve. April and I decided to take our chances and stay in AZ. So we drove. And drove. And drove some more. Most of the places on my list to photograph were covered in snow, either inaccessible or unrecoginizable. So we kept heading east, trying to find something cool to see or do. Eventually we ended up in Canyon de Chelly, AZ. What an amazing place! We stuck around for a couple days waiting for a break in the weather. It was disappointing we never got a chance to hike down into the canyon but it was still an amazing place.

The weather finally cleared on New Years Eve so we took off for Monument Valley, AZ. Not a place on my list but we were nearby so we figured we had to go check it out. We spent an afternoon and evening exploring and photographing, it was great fun and definitely worth the trip. With the weather and time of year the crowds were extremely light. To cap the day off right, just after sunset we were treated to spectacular blue moon.

We then hit the road for the Grand Canyon. We wanted to enjoy the granduer of the canyon on the first day of 2010. The canyon didn’t disappoint.

Happy New Year!
Jason & April

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