Page 2 of 7 FirstFirst 1234 ... LastLast
Results 11 to 20 of 63

Thread: American Southwest in full Autumn

  1. #11

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Posts
    8,936

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    The advantage in LAX is that you'll be in striking distance of Freestyle or Samy's.
    The disadvantage is spending a full day of travel getting out of LA and paying CA sales tax.
    I'd mail order and have them deliver the film to your first night hotel in Nevada, AZ or Utah instead.
    Always take along plenty of water when traveling in the desert!
    The Enchanted Circle in New Mexico is---enchanting!
    The Virgin River in that little corner of AZ is also fertile ground.
    The million dollar highway into Ouray is well worth trying for.
    St George has plenty of good cheap motels in striking distance of Zion NP, but you can camp inside the park and spend less time driving.
    There is a Walmart in St George where you an pick up the basics for less than a night in a motel.

    Definitely order the trout at the Road Creek Inn if you find yourself in Loa, Utah
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.
    I'm not OCD. I'm CDO which is alphabetically correct.

  2. #12
    Les
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    1,074

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    It would probably help if you indicate what you are really interested in....since the icons become sort of a drive by. Is Yos on the list ? SW is rather sizable place and from what you've indicated, that you will be there for 13 days (travel type). Allow me to give you bit of a contrast, I've spend 70 days there few years ago (not my first time) and I kept running into all sorts of distractions. Although they were happy type, the trip was appx 25% planned and the rest was improvisation. I should also point out that I had no deadlines. The point I'm making is, that you may be able to structure tight-listed script, but in that amount of time there will be limits as to what you can explore, enjoy or photograph. Considering that, you might want to center the attention on the area or locations that you prefer. Fortunately, you do have plenty of time to work out the logistics. Hmmm, once you get your "dream list" set, and if you are not camping (?), you can either reserve lodging or set you self up a spot where you could visit several places from. True, that would be after the kids go back to school, but I've seen that more and more folks use that time as an escape travel.

    Les

  3. #13

    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Posts
    42

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    Woah! I wasn't expecting the thread to explode with comments in such a way. Thank you everyone for your insights and suggestions, I appreciate. Now I'm at work and I can't formulate a proper response to each one of you, I'll do it when I get home tonight. I read all your comments and you are right, I'm most likely trying to cover too much territory here. I've never been there (I only visited the east coast so far) and I see the distances are way beyond my imagination. I'll plan a more restricted trip based on your tips and update the thread. As for the flight, unfortunately it's already booked and I can't change it, but LV would have been even more expensive.

  4. #14

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Posts
    8,936

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    The Utah tourism folks are running a campaign right now called The Mighty Five primarily focused on National Parks in Utah, with plenty of sample itineraries & tourist info to be gleaned if that neck of the woods is what floats your boat. Just do a search for "Utah Tourism"
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.
    I'm not OCD. I'm CDO which is alphabetically correct.

  5. #15

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    San Joaquin Valley, California
    Posts
    8,936

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    Another thought when planning your big adventure: have a Plan B!
    Weather, fires, govt. shut downs, all sorts of things can, albeit rarely, happen to throw a wrench in your plans.
    Fortunately the South West is so big that if something prevents you from from travelling thatdirection, there are also incredible sights to see in the other direction.
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.
    I'm not OCD. I'm CDO which is alphabetically correct.

  6. #16

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Vero Beach, Florida
    Posts
    298

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    I see your list includes White Sands and it should, wonderful place. To the east of White Sands is the Sacramento Mountains and the town of Cloudcroft, I have often photographed fall foliage here. The color change tends to occur later in the fall in Southern NM, so depending on your timing this could be a good option. The cottonwoods along the various rivers change color well into November.

  7. #17

    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Posts
    42

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    Quote Originally Posted by Heroique View Post
    Glad you're spending more than a long weekend in this favorite area of mine. Keep in mind, even the two weeks you're planning will still seem insufficient for the amount of land you want to cover.
    Since you have several months of planning ahead, here are some reading suggestions to help guide you to places that may suit your LF needs & inform you about the area's natural and cultural history:
    Thank you Heroique, I didn't know them but I'll definitely give a read to Desert's Solitaire!

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan9940 View Post
    End of October could be pushing it for peak color in Arizona, but I'd highly recommend the Sedona and Flagstaff areas; hiking Oak Creek Canyon during fall color is a joy (Sedona) and the aspens in Flagstaff, especially hiking up into the Inner Basin, are quite a sight. Zion is always busy during fall color, but if you get away from the main valley floor and hike into a few of the side canyons/washes, you'll probably find some interesting things to photograph. Please be mindful of the weather forecasts, if you decide to hike the washes in Zion because you definitely don't want to be in there if rain hits! The states you plan to cover sounds like a wonderful trip, but, if you've never been out here, space brings with it a whole new meaning; it's VAST and driving times become longer than anticipated.
    You are absolutely right Alan, as others pointed out I basically underestimated the distances here... I just discovered that the Colorado Plateau alone is bigger than my whole country (Italy). Jeesus.
    Anyway the areas around Sedona and Flagstaff seem wonderful indeed, I was already suggested to visit those and you just confirmed it to me. The Oak Creek Canyon looks fantastic. I "just" need to plan the trip accordingly now.
    Regarding Zion, I think I've heard some LF photographer before warning visitors about flash floods. I'll definitely take my precautions, since my fiancee, who shares the trip with me, got thunderstruck last year and since then we tend to avoid any unnecessary risk.

    Quote Originally Posted by djdister View Post
    I hope you aren't expecting a lot of "fall color" in the Southwest, but that said, still a nice time to visit that part of the country. And don't run out of California so fast - there's Death Valley and Joshua Tree to explore before heading to other areas,
    I think I'll spend a lot of time in Cali actually, and Joshua Tree is on my list. What do you mean by not expecting a lot of fall color? Maybe in desert areas?

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Wiley View Post
    Harrumphh, Mr. New Hampshire!! The SW has absolutely incredible fall color. But the timing varies between mid Oct through Nov depending on the location and altitude. There are quite a few areas where the mountains in the Four Corners area are like islands, where you can see stunning rock desert and lower altitudes and fall aspen up high within a short distance. But be prepared for snow anytime. Always travel with plenty of supplies, warm gear, and good sleeping bags. Tourists facilities can be far between in the Fall. And just about the worst thing you could do is try to cover a whole bunch of states on a single trip. That's why I suggested Four Corners - where Utah, Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico meet. If you go from LA through Las Vegas to Zion Natl Prk, then to the upper part of that, it's easy to get to Bryce NP and from there onto Hwy 12 down into the Escalante River area, and from there up into the aspen, and back down again into Capitol Reef NP, and from there over toward Canyonlands and Arches, from there back down into the tip of Arizona and Monument Valley, Can de Chelly, then potentially backtrack northern Ariz through Petrified Forest NP, Grand Can S rim, etc, back to LA, with at least driving through Death Valley being perfectly feasible. That would be reasonable in two or three weeks and still allow some day hiking and quality photography time, plus lots of sheer sightseeing opportunities. Bring good boots, lots of water. In that part of the world, logistics can be survival. Much of the canyon area can be downright hot during the day and bitter cold at night. Many tourist facilities close at the end of October, so you have to plan for the option of camping. One more word of warning - beware of deer hunters in the woods in Autumn. You want to know where they are. They often hunt drunken and will shoot at mere noises. Drive around a bit on the road if hunting season is open before you camp or start hiking around. But in the National Parks, hunting is forbidden, so they're safer. Capitol Reef is magnificent in Oct and has few of the crowds of the better known National Parks. Taking Utah Hwy 12 there is highly recommended, but it does go up high. But before that, you should set aside a day to hike to Calf Creek Falls down on the Escalante. An easy lovely walk, maybe 6 miles round trip. Have good maps. Cell phone coverage is quite limited, and absolutely do not trust auto GPS to get you around - people die every year following phantom GPS shortcuts in the American West. When in doubt about road conditions, ask locally. Slickrock clay can be as hard as asphalt but turn into sheer soap after a rain; and you can easily get stuck in even a Jeep. Best to stick to paved roads. Flash flooding tends to subside late in October, with November being a generally safe month, but always beware of the risk, whether driving or hiking. Gas up fully when and where you can.
    Very informative, thanks Drew. I actually laughed at drunk hunters, is that really a thing?
    I have to figure out what clothes and supplies I need to carry, since I guess there will both hot and freezing temps. But I also have to figure out how to plan my stops at night. A cheap motel on the road is fine for 1-2 nights, or should I book everything on booking/airbnb before?

    Quote Originally Posted by biedron View Post
    First, do you have a special reason to fly into LAX? If not, I might suggest flying into Las Vegas instead. Most of your destinations are well to the east of LA, so having a more central point of entry / departure will save some driving time in your limited time frame.Likewise, why waste time trying to buy and get film developed locally? Do you not have enough room in your carry on for film? If so, that’s a legitimate reason. But if you are afraid of Xray damage, don’t be. You can find plenty of testimonials that it is quite safe through the carry on system. Do not however, put film in checked baggage. As to recommendations, well there are innumerable locations. One of my favorite drives is the US 12 Scenic Byway in Utah. It would be the natural route to take if you were going from Zion to Bryce to Capitol Reef National Parks. On the “hog back” section between Escalante and Boulder there are spectacular drop offs on either side of the road. If you got as far as Capitol Reef you might consider driving further on US 24 up to I 70 and then down US 191 to Arches and Cayonlands National Parks. I’m partial to the Grand Staircase - Escalante and Vermillion Cliffs National Monuments. That’s a big area with lots of out of the way locations to visit.
    Thanks Bob. Unfortunately I already got my flight booked. I admit I didn't think back then about the strategic position of LV, but that route would have been considerably more expensive than LA.
    I had thought about buying film locally because I have a stopover in Germany, so assuming I don't encounter xray on my way out, I still have to deal with a total of four scans. I know about the difference between carry-on and checked baggage, still I'm worried that the recent escalation of events is an excuse for TSA to subtly increase the xray levels or something. Am I being paranoid here? Of course I'd be more than happy to pack everything inside my carry-on and be done with it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Klein View Post
    I agree that LAX is too far west. Where do you intend to drop the car off? There may be a substantial drop off fee if you don;t go back to LAX. Last year in April, my wife I drove 2100 miles over 16 days doing the Four Corner area Drew mentions above. We found Hertz car rental was the cheapest through Expedia booking (thru AARP) but we're seniors, like Drew. We did no hiking and the time was full up. We started in Santa Fe, New Mexico and ended in Sedona,Arizona. We covered all the major National Parks. Here's the Google Map link. https://goo.gl/maps/ineH9sdyHcC2 But you're welcome to adapt our map to your needs.
    I drop the car off at LAX. That's a very interesting trip Alan, thanks for sharing the map.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Klein View Post
    That was mainly to satisfy my wife because if I spent the time only shooting, I wouldn't have come home with a wife. Just a word of caution if you want to have a friend at the end of the trip. Also, most of the parks we went too are more rock oriented than foliage. https://www.flickr.com/photos/alankl...57694819890421 You might want to start in Colorado if you want foliage.
    Ahah. That's exactly why I said I get obsessed with photography and I don't want to spoil the trip for my fiancee. I know what you mean very well.
    Colorado is my dream. I wish I lived there. But I guess I'll have to visit it another time, as everyone basically pointed out. I guess we always have to deal with compromises.

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Pitman View Post
    As others have said or suggested, you are trying to cover too much territory. Redefine and reduce the area you want to explore. It's over 400 miles driving from Los Angeles to Zion NP. You'll use a whole day each way. Flying into Las Vegas puts you at a much more convenient location. My suggestion would be to concentrate on southern Utah and save the other the other five states you mentioned for other trips. Southern Utah is a target rich environment. You've got six months to plan this trip. For that time of year, you probably should have campground or motel reservations lined up. While you might find fall color, you might not. But you will find lots of color in the landscape. It's a better focus, because it's a sure thing.
    Even though you might get a lot of corrective suggestions, keep asking questions on the Forum. There is a lot of experience here.
    Thanks Keith, you are right. Right now I'm going for the California-Utah plan.
    As I said above, I'm just not sure how to do the hotel/motel reservation thing.

    Max

  8. #18

    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Bow, NH
    Posts
    1,260

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    Quote Originally Posted by afxstudio View Post
    I think I'll spend a lot of time in Cali actually, and Joshua Tree is on my list. What do you mean by not expecting a lot of fall color? Maybe in desert areas?
    Yes, I'm referring to the desert and high desert of the Southwest. I've lived in California and Colorado and have many fond memories of shooting in the Southwest. There is plenty of color - from the quality of the light and coloration in the stone and sand, but think about shooting some B&W too. Joshua Tree alone is a huge and wonderful location. You'll need to plan carefully due to the many great locations and the distances between them.

  9. #19
    Drew Wiley
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    SF Bay area, CA
    Posts
    13,595

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    Sedona is an expensive tourist trap, but does have rich oak leaf coloration in autumn. Flagstaff is higher and can get pretty windy that time of year, and is basically a big road stop. There are some nice Indian ruins nearby, and the San Francisco Peaks above (a long long ways from the city of San Francisco) get nice aspen color on the ski resort road. It's also near the S Rim of the Grand Canyon, which has accommodations of its own. But all of that is really quite a distance from the Four Corners area. The quality of your experience is more important than the quantity. Try to see too much on a single trip and you'll actually see a lot less. Yes, get that book Desert Solitaire. He recommends getting out and crawling on your belly if you want to understand the desert. I agree! It's best to slow down a bit. But be flexible. Changes in weather can mandate changes in plans. Getting stuck in a snowstorm a couple of days can be a magical plus on a trip like that, provided you have the right gear and supplies, and have real roadbed. Getting stuck somewhere remote on wet clay can be fatal. And I wasn't joking about the deer hunters at all. Keep a safe distance from them.

  10. #20
    Alan Klein's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    New Jersey was NYC
    Posts
    424

    Re: American Southwest in full Autumn

    To give an idea of distances, here is Italy (without Sicily) over lapped on the USA. I labelled the 6 states you mentioned going to. The purple is a rough estimate of the Colorado Plateau. It's 866 miles (1400km) from San Francisco to the eastern border of New Mexico.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Colorado Plateau and Italy.jpg 
Views:	15 
Size:	29.2 KB 
ID:	189053

Similar Threads

  1. American Southwest
    By jp in forum Location & Travel
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 15-May-2013, 22:29
  2. autumn
    By h2oman in forum Image Sharing (LF) & Discussion
    Replies: 30
    Last Post: 25-Oct-2011, 20:44
  3. Autumn photos, anyone?
    By Michael Graves in forum On Photography
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 10-Oct-2008, 10:16
  4. Autumn in New England
    By John Cook in forum Location & Travel
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: 22-Aug-2005, 19:49

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •