After a Sunny Day, we knew we’d be hard pressed to make the long drive to our next destination, so we opted for an overnight in Zion.

The weather was clear (not a photographer’s delight). I was only too happy to trade my camera and a sunset shoot for a glass of wine and a relaxing evening on the patio of our B&B.

Our plan was to photograph sunrise from an overlook where we could capture both the Watchman to the south and the Temples and Towers of the Virgin to the north. 

3:45am the alarm goes off. Dressing hastily, we stumble out of the room. Our host is miraculously up preparing breakfast and sends off with a “to go” cup of French-pressed coffee. An early morning doesn’t get any better than this.

At the trailhead parking lot, I enjoy the last sips of coffee. It is pitch black and signage to the actual trail is poor. We wander a bit, find the actual trailhead, and begin our trek. After a ¼ mile, I realize our tripods are back in the car. Can’t shoot a blue hour shot without the tripod. Back we go. Second start, a little faster paced. We hike in the dark with flash lights, the trail goes back and forth on switchbacks, we gain over 500 feet of elevation. Blue hour is upon us, and we are not at our location. Time is of the essence. With a full pack of gear, I rush to the ridge to capture some semblance of golden hour. I set up and Jeff’ walks into my shot. I move and I’m in Jeff’s shot. Bickering ensues. 

The sky is clear with ordinary light which challenges the creative juices that had not yet started to flow.

Tail end of blue hour, not quite at the viewpoint.

Almost there…[photo by Jeff]

Yes, we hiked up from the valley you see below in the dark.

Better than last time [I think], and we made it back to the B&B before 8am for an incredible breakfast.

Remember, it’s all about the light.

Taking time to capture the moment