Winter Solstice

12 hour exposure; Solstice moon setting in the northwest
Courthouse Towers, Arches National Park


Because the relationship of the earth and moon change from one season to the next, certain compositions can only occur on solstices.  On Winter Solstice, the full moon sets the farthest north on the horizon that it will set all year.  Watching the moon drop behind the Courthouse Towers is a rare sight.

The ethereal pools in the slickrock at the base of the towers thawed partially during the day
 and refroze during the long, cold night creating abstract reflections on the ice.



The skies were thick with clouds in the late afternoon with forecasts calling for 20% chance of snow.  Still, I had to try to shoot on Winter Solstice. 


Constructing a temporary shelter from cardboard, duct tape, and rocks, I was able to protect the camera in the event of snow. 
High winds agitated the pool at dusk.




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