Castle Valley Hike - Castle Valley, River Road, Moab

Sometimes Mother Nature takes pity on photographers and allows a few moments of joy to come into their lives. The morning started off with what is normal for one of Jeff Clow's Photo Tours - up well before dawn, meet for a quick continental breakfast, and head out for some great landscapes. Not this morning. The weather forecast had not predicted rain (by the way, how do weathermen justify getting paid? End rant), but rain it did. We decided to wait a while and head out a little later. It was still raining when we eventually headed out, and we headed to Red Cliff Lodge on River Road to wait it out. The rain finally stopped, but we were left with overcast skies and a bleary morning. Don't get me wrong, you can still get some stellar photos with these type of conditions, but the great orange color of the sandstone is muted. After shooting for the morning and the early afternoon hours, we began heading back to Moab, stopping at a few spots along the way.

The last of our stops was Castle Valley. A number of us decided to hike on this trail rather than stay by the road. What a great decision that was. As we began the hike, we noticed small pockets of blue beginning to peak through. By the time we got to this spot, the photography Gods smiled upon us and blessed us with some amazing blue skies and terrific skies. Moments like these make photographers realize that waiting out the inclement weather can be worth it, and that when the weather is great, we appreciate it more.