Streamside Cottonwood Trees

Streamsiode Cottonwood Trees
Streamside cottonwood trees along the Virgin River begin to change to autumn colors.

Streamside Cottonwood Trees. © Copyright 2021 G Dan Mitchell – all rights reserved.

Streamside cottonwood trees along the Virgin River begin to change to autumn colors.

This photograph comes from a very busy place in Zion National Park, along the trail to one of the more popular destinations in Zion Canyon. Fortunately, as is almost always the case in well-known national parks, you can usually step even a little ways off the main trails and put some distance between yourself and the hordes. That’s more or less what I did here — I just walked a little ways away from the main hiking thoroughfare to where the trees were overhanging the river a bit. (However, a warning: When there are so many people around, sometimes a critical mass of them may see you making photographs and decide to follow. Unfortunately, that happened here to some extent. On some occasions I’ve been known to go to some lengths to obscure my visits to such places!)

Once again, I was really mostly attracted by the reflected canyon light — that special light that reflects from sunlit red rock walls and then gently fills in shadows with softly-directional, warm light. (One challenge: if there is a breeze it can be hard to deal with the motion of the leaves in this low light.) I chose the portrait orientation for this photograph so that I could include a bit of the stream and the boulder along with a bit of the canyon wall above and beyond the trees.


G Dan Mitchell is a California photographer and visual opportunist. His book, “California’s Fall Color: A Photographer’s Guide to Autumn in the Sierra” is available from Heyday Books, Amazon, and directly from G Dan Mitchell.

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The post Streamside Cottonwood Trees first appeared on G Dan Mitchell Photography.

Streamside Cottonwood Trees