Lower Antelope Canyon; Page, Arizona; February 2015
Antelope Canyon was high on my priority list for shooting while crossing the country in the winter of 2014/2015. The curved sandstone walls of the canyon have been formed by flash flooding and water flowing down through the canyon over many years. This erosion is accentuated by the play of light streaming down the narrow slots seen best in the middle of the day when the sun is directly overhead. This is a rare time to shoot for me when early morning and late evening are my norm.
There were many challenges to shooting Lower Antelope Canyon. It’s located on Navajo land so is restricted to guided tours led by authorized Native American tour guides. This meant I had to deal with less flexibility then I was accustomed to. I carried my gear 120 feet down a series of metal ladders to the canyon floor. The light is extremely limited down there which dictated long exposures of some 30 seconds and a very sturdy tripod. It was also tough to keep dust off my lens and sensor, especially with the dry Arizona climate. One tip is to use gaffer tape along all the seems of the camera and back. Regardless of the challenges this was an amazing place to see and photograph. Everywhere I looked there was a photograph; up, down, forward and back. I was certainly not disappointed.
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