The Wave

Swirling sandstone formation known as "The Wave" in the Coyote Buttes area, Paria Plateau, Paria Canyon-Vermilion Cliffs Wilderness, Arizona. (Russ Bishop/Russ Bishop Photography)

As a followup to my last post, The Wave is another gem of the southwest that’s a very popular destination with photographers, but also one of the most remote spots on the map. So remote in fact that on my first trip I failed to find it – even with a GPS!

It’s a wonderful example of chaos theory applied to geology. Basically a petrified sand dune that’s been carved by the forces of wind and water over the ages, it’s easy to see how it got its name. I made this image a few years ago on my second trip to the area, which lies on the Arizona/Utah border southwest of Lake Powell. The image was taken with a 20mm wide-angle lens to emphasize the dizzying curves and create a sense that the formation is much bigger than it really is.

©Russ Bishop/All Rights Reserved

The Subway

The Subway along North Creek, Zion National Park, Utah (Russ Bishop/Russ Bishop Photography)

I often say you could spend the rest of your life wandering around the remote corners southern Utah and still not see it all. The myriad of canyons and buttes are a feast for the eye (and lens) and are worthy of all the wilderness status we can give them. But invariably I do visit the more popular locations like Zion and Bryce where the challenge is to find those hidden gems amid the well-covered icons.

On a recent trip to Zion I made of point of getting a permit and hiking the better part of a day to a remote corner of the park along North Creek. After several miles of stream crossings and boulder hopping I arrived at The Subway – one of the jewels of the park. I spent several hours shooting this magical spot while the light continually changed as it played off the canyon walls and illuminated the stream and pools.

©Russ Bishop/All Rights Reserved