A five day trip into the heart of Canyonlands landed me in the seat of a small plane. The strong winds and adverse weather made for incredible photographic opportunities and the flight a bit of an adventure itself.
I have a strong stomach and no real fear of flying, it is my fear of heights that caused me to grab for the “oh shit” handle more than once. The vast open spaces sprawled out below me, visible through the mist and snow that was making our light plane less than stable in these turbulent skies. Gene, our pilot, was cool as a cucumber and the other three passengers seemed equally calm, I found this reassuring. With a deep breath I returned to my lens.
Canyons and valleys opened up below us, these great gorges defined by the very rivers that created them. Snow clad mountains and stormy skies met us on every horizon and the precipitation outside our window would evaporate from sight as quickly as it had blocked our visibility. The immensity of Canyonlands was hidden below us beneath a thin veil.
The Maze district, where I had just spent the week on foot and bike, now seemed foreign and elusive by air. A cool breeze blew in through the loose fitting door and hit my face, I welcomed the fresh air.