Methow Valley, Washington, USA by Patricia Thomas

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Picture Story

The Methow Valley area is a long (very long) drive from where I live yet every spring I start dreaming about the hills and wishing I could see the blooms and before you know it I am in my car making the many hour drive with eager anticipation. This year these types of journeys have been on hold due to Covid and our State's required stay-at-home orders. I have equally enjoyed returning to my images to revisit last year's spring wildflower season and dreaming about the flowers that are blooming alone without the treading of feet across the earth.

The spring wildflower season is all too short due to the hot Eastern Washington sun that scorches the land so early in the spring. The many varieties of lupine push up and paint the hills with purples, yellow, and white; often as far as the eye can see. Another great flower that grows in abundance is the sunny yellow balsamroot flower. Together these (and many other wild flowers) create a carpet of color to capture the attention of all who seek their blooms.

My journey to capture these blossoms consist of studying maps and driving back country roads; scouting locations throughout the day. Once locations have been discovered then the hard part begins; there is only one sunrise each day so which location or field do I go to capture the morning light? At each location I work out the logistics of sunrise (or set) placement, and how the scene might unfold and could be photographed. Getting to location long before the sun comes up is another challenge which includes little sleep, lots of coffee, and hiking before the birds wake up. It all pays off, even if the light isn’t good, just standing in this color is sure to brighten your day.

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