Organ Mountains, Las Cruces, New Mexico, USA by Steven Martin

I wanted to capture an image of the full moon rising over the Organ Mountains. After doing a bit of research in early fall I discovered that the full moon would be rising just after sunset at the end of January. My goal was to capture the full moon as the last rays of daylight light up the mountains and sky. I scouted several locations along the bajada at the western base of the mountains and thought I had found a good location about a week in advance. The day before I planned to capture this image I was walking my dog along the Rio Grande, about 15 miles west of the Organ Mountains, a public river trail a couple miles from home, when the moon rose over the Organ Mountains. The sun hadn't set yet, but I quickly noticed how the line of trees made an interesting foreground to the Mountains. The next day I set my Nikon D610, coupled on my Nikon 70-200 lens on my Manfrotto tripod up along the river trail about an hour before moonrise and waited, capturing some other beautiful images of the Organ Mountains illuminated by the setting sun. Autumn and winter are my favorite seasons in Southern New Mexico as the days are short, cool and typically less windy. While sunrise and sunset light is short this time of the year it can create some wonderful pastel skies.

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