Love at First Light: White Sands National Monument

Alamogordo, New Mexico: Marty and I rose at 5:00 a.m. and after oatmeal and coffee, we drove to White Sands National Monument. We turned into the gate and chatted briefly with the ranger, a brusque fellow who could have benefitted from oatmeal and coffee. The road into the park was white, so were the dunes. White Sands is home to the largest gypsum dunes in the world.

We pulled over and parked. A snowplow rumbled down the middle of the road, scraping the gypsum “snow” into a peaked centerline. I zipped my jacket against the chill, grabbed my sunglasses and camera, and stepped onto the cornstarch-like dunes in search of grasses, shrubs, animal tracks–something to put into the lovely light.

I love photographing like this: Being open to possibilities with no agenda. I feel big, expanded, guided, and filled with joy. Just my camera and me, enjoying God’s world. As you look at these images, perhaps you can feel the joy, too.

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Clouds bend down to meet the curve of the dunes and grasses.

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The sands have moved on, exposing this yucca’s roots. Soon it will fall over and die.

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There are times when elbows make the best tripod!

B&W, yucca, portrait, landscape, perspective, white, sands, national, monument

A black and white version of the image above. Which do you like best?

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What looked like sea anemones are actually stubs of dead plants.

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A soaptree yucca plant shares the sky with clouds and light.

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When the sun poked through the clouds, it changed the landscape. Time to play with shadows.

May you have a blessed day.

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