Two Lucky Shots of Cathedral Rock

I planned my visit to Red Rock Crossing in the late afternoon. Just enough time to get there, walk around to see everything, and enjoy a picnic dinner before picking my location for sunset.

I almost didn’t go when I saw the dark storm clouds coming before I left the RV park. But the location was about half an hour away and I thought I might get lucky with some dramatic skies. And lucky I was!

Arriving at Red Rock Crossing, it started raining. Pouring really. All kinds of people started running out of the park into their cars and quickly left. How great is that? No people!! Ray and I stayed in the truck to have our picnic and wait out the storm. When the last few raindrops fell, I jumped out and got all my camera gear together and quickly headed towards Oak Creek where I knew there would be water in the foreground.

I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw Cathedral Rock for the first time. With a beautiful rainbow heading right into the rock!!

Cathedral Rock, Red Rock Crossing, Sedona, Arizona
Please click the images to view larger versions.

I made a number of images before a mountain biker came along and wanted to cross the creek in front of me. The rocks going across the creek provide the only crossing point. There were some other photographers there too and when the biker went to cross I glanced back at them to see if they were also finished shooting so he could cross. One of them said to me “Aren’t you going to shoot him?” That’s when I realized I made my classic mistake of always avoiding people in my photography. I didn’t even consider it until the other photographer said it.

I wasn’t set up right for that kind of shot. I was all ready for a long exposure landscape with my mirror lockup on and my two second timer. All I had time to do was press the shutter and hope for the best. With my two second timer on I had absolutely no control over whether the bike rider would even be in the frame when the shutter released. Here is what I got:

Cathedral Rock, Red Rock Crossing, Sedona, Arizona

Two lucky shots in one night! Maybe there really is some spiritual vortex thing here?

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  1. Carlos says

    I love this place.I didn’t hear about it when I was driving to Grand Canyon. We just drove by and love it… I had a nice rainbow shoot while hiking up cathedral rock. I think it was called Castle Rock (I cant remember).the colors of the rocks enhance the rainbows which make them look amanzing.
    I think that was the day I decided to try to jump into photography.

    Great pics. those clouds set the mysticism of the area.

    • says

      Hi Carlos, thank you very much for your visit and comments. It is amazing how the colours of the rocks affects the rainbows and reflections and everything else. It was a pretty special moment seeing that rainbow.

    • says

      Hi Richard, I do have a shutter cable, I just rarely use it because I am always doing relative long exposure landscapes with the mirror lock-up and so the 2 second timer works great and it’s one less thing to carry around. I only use the cable if I think there is going to be some kind of action. Maybe I should start using it more often. Thanks for the suggestion.

  2. Born27 says

    Magnificent! The rock formation is amazing! I love the way you captured it, not mentioning the beautiful rainbow there.. And the second photo while you’re in the river is awesome!
    Born27 recently posted..Teleconference EquipmentMy Profile

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