Horseshoe Bend, Arizona by Liesl Pfeffer

Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
November 2015

No, this doesn't look like the promotional pictures of Horseshoe Bend. To get a photo like that, one has to stand riiiiiiiiight on the edge of the cliff, just above a completely unprotected drop all the way to the bottom of the canyon. So, no, I don't have any pictures of that view. I was terrified just watching Dan get as close as he did in that first photo. 


Antelope Canyon, Arizona by Liesl Pfeffer

Lower and Upper Canyons
Antelope Canyon, Arizona
November 2015

Since it is pretty dark down there, I wasn't sure if I would be able to take a correct exposure. I didn't take very many film photos, focusing instead on enjoying the view and taking iPhone photographs to have something to look back on later. So, I was pleased when I had the film printed that the handful of pictures I took on my camera turned out ok! (I used my F1.4 50mm prime lens, 200 speed film and 1/30 second exposure time).  

The first three photos here are from the Lower Canyon, which is much narrower and is accessed by climbing down fairly scary (for me, with my fear of heights) stairs/ladders. The next two photos, where you can see the canyon is much wider, that is the Upper Canyon, which can be accessed at ground level. Both canyons were very beautiful, though the Upper Canyon was busier with tour groups, probably because it is more accessible.

Lake Powell, Arizona by Liesl Pfeffer

Lake Powell, Arizona
November 2015
Pictured here are Dan, Joy, and I
All photos by me, except the picture of me, which Joy took with my camera

Because it was late fall, sun was setting early, around 5pm every day. So every day we tried to reach our destination before the sun fell. We got to Lake Powell just in time and quickly drove up above the lake to this viewpoint. We strolled around with a handful of other people, and saw the color of the landscape dramatically and quickly shift. We took each others' portraits, enjoying the fading of the light.  


Grand Canyon, Arizona by Liesl Pfeffer

Grand Canyon, Arizona
November 2015

I felt really fortunate to see the Grand Canyon twice in one lifetime. The first time I came here was on a month-long road trip with my family, in 1991, when I was 12. We hired a minivan and the five of us packed in there every day and traced a path all over the western half of the United States. I remember stopping to eat picnic sandwiches in national forests, staying in Super 8 motels, singing along from the middle seat to cast recordings of Broadway musicals, talking to other kids in hot tubs and swimming pools at night, sucking the helium out of a deflating balloon we bought at Disneyland and speaking in high pitched chipmunk voices. I remember drinking Hershey's hot chocolate and eating Apple Jack cereal. I remember Metallica released Enter Sandman that month and my brother had it on repeat on his discman.

I remember when we were at the Grand Canyon, we couldn't believe that people were climbing out onto rocks that seemed to be balanced precariously on top of long columns of sandstone. My brother pretended to leap from the edge at one point and my little sister burst into tears because he really seemed to disappear from sight for a second.