We drove up to Bryce Canyon from Kanab, Utah, on a whim to do a day hike of undecided length. The forecast for the day was for temps hovering around freezing, brisk winds, variable clouds and a chance of snow: 2-4" potential. Perfect for photographing snowy winter scenes in Bryce, which had already had a fair amount of snow.
The forecast proved to be highly accurate. Strong winds were driving scattered low clouds across the higher elevations at a rapid pace, and the light was changing constantly.
As we hiked around the Peek-A-Boo loop, we opted to take the spur up to Bryce Viewpoint. As we got nearer to the rim, the gusting winds were blowing the snow along the cliff face and through the trees, creating interesting light patterns.
I attempted to capture sunbursts (hence the f29 aperture) through the pines when I noticed these particularly strong light rays off to my left. I was lucky to get a couple of good frames fired off before the clouds shifted yet again, and the effect was gone. A polarizer enhanced the clear blue skies and added contrast to the blowing snow. I think the shot captures the essence of the brisk winter day quite well.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor