Copyright © Richard Harpum
In 2009 I visited the American Southwest and went hiking with a close friend around Zion National Park in Utah. On the way back to Phoenix, we stopped by Horseshoe Bend, which is a spectacular feature in the Colorado River just south of Page, Arizona.
There is a ¾-mile walk from the parking lot off U.S. 89 and en route, there is no hint of what is to come. It is not until you reach the rim that you are suddenly rewarded with the magnificent sight of the Colorado River winding around this enormous bend 1,100 feet below. To get a sense of scale just look how small the 20-person inflatable pontoon raft looks on the right hand bend. The entry point for these is 3 miles upstream at Glen Canyon Dam on Lake Powell and it is a popular half-day trip down to Lee’s Ferry, the last river exit before the Grand Canyon.
Supplemented by the deep shadows, the colors – blue/green river, orange cliffs and blue sky - dazzle the senses. The geology is fascinating, ranging from the 180 million year-old Jurassic Navajo sandstones at the rim down to Triassic rocks at river level. In the distance are the darker, 200 million year old Vermilion Cliffs.
I took numerous photographs of the vista and digitally joined 6 shots together to obtain this panorama. I then used golden ratios to position the main features.
Horseshoe Bend is a “must see” if you are in the area.
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