Ranger Kathryn's Arches

May 8, 2013

Squall beauty

Filed under: Uncategorized — Kathryn Colestock-Burke @ 4:38 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

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Scheduled to give two outdoor geology programs this morning, I studied the clouds intently. My winter uniform was retrieved from the closet on this blustery May day that SHOULD be nearing 80 degrees but showed no promise of hitting mid-50s. Park visitors, God bless ’em, still come to ranger talks no matter the weather.

As I approached my assigned overlook, rain twelve miles off was descending in thick curtains, silently drenching the desert below. Precipitation gives a shimmery appearance that glistens in your heart as much as on the landforms, and I felt momentarily giddy to see my parched park drinking up the gift of water.

Shallow depressions in the sandstone gathered the droplets, half inch deep, two inches deep. These ephemeral potholes nurture all living things, from the tiniest of organisms to our largest predators. To see standing water is to receive soul-refreshment. Who doesn’t need that???





  1. You have a way with words.

    Comment by paulrrulon — May 8, 2013 @ 5:41 pm | Reply

  2. I love your images of the squalls. And it reminded me of the day we spent there on our last trip – a day not unlike the one you describe here. It was also, by the way, the day we encountered you at the entrance station. It was cool, a little breezy, and there was a hint of storm clouds on the horizon. As they got closer to Canyonlands, I found myself trying to find the “right place” for photography. Eventually, I wound up at the Green River Overlook (one of my favorite spots) and took quite a few photographs of the approaching squall (a squall that never got as close as I’d hoped it would).

    Anyway, here’s one image that I posted on my site ( http://paulmaximphotography.wordpress.com/2013/04/03/flight-path/ ). It was interesting because of the sudden appearance of the raven that flew up from below the cliff. Danged bird really surprised me, but it made for a better image!

    Comment by Paul Maxim — May 10, 2013 @ 7:03 am | Reply

  3. Beautiful! Can’t wait to take your tour one day!

    Comment by Lorraine — May 12, 2013 @ 12:33 pm | Reply

  4. These are stunning, I am planning a trip there this summer to test out some gear. These pictures are making it hard to wait! The depth you give in these pictures make them truly great.

    Comment by James Austin — May 24, 2013 @ 10:12 am | Reply

    • Anticipation makes the arrival even better, James. Summer (at least the latter half of it) can bring dramatic thunderstorms that turn the landscape into a marvel in minutes. Hope you get a good storm!

      Comment by Kathryn Burke — May 31, 2013 @ 6:19 pm | Reply

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