Tuesday, April 28, 2009
A Pastoral Scene in the Land of Contrasts
When most people think of Utah, they picture the canyons, hoodoos and many colorful red rock formations typical of the southern half of the state, but at the higher elevations north of Zion and east of Cedar City, the environment is much different. Two roads descend slowly from Cedar Breaks at over 10,000ft. through wide, open meadows like this one, evergreen forest and huge aspen groves growing right up out of black stone lava flows. In fall, the colors and atmosphere are truly gorgeous, but you can still drive around all day, pull over and stop anywhere you want and rarely run into other people, certainly never enough that it feels crowded. (You might however hit a traffic jam of sheep moving to lower ground for the winter as I did here the next day!) Every september I start watching foliage reports on the web and try to time a trip to catch the peak colors. I always get some fantastic images from this area and I love the seclusion and the beauty of it, not to mention all the other fantastic and varied landscapes within a couple hours drive. Kind of makes you want to leave the city and never look back.