This has been an interesting summer for me. I usually get a lot variety of hikes in from all around the state. This summer was a little less exciting, but still wonderful. I have visited a few new locations: The Subway, The Watchman Trail, A few trails in Kolob, Yant Flat, and Coyote Gulch.
Though this might be a lot of new hikes for an average outdoorsy person, it is a little below average for me. But what I have done though is revisit many of the hikes I have been on. Places like Kanarraville Falls, Angels Landing, Emerald Pools, Cedar Breaks, Narrows, Hidden Canyon, and so on. Though, these times I have been taking my new camera and been doing it with a new goal in mind.
This summer I have really picked up the hobby of photography. Though I would like this to be a part time job in a fashion, right now it will stay a hobby. This hobby though has been teaching me new things about nature.
First and foremost- Nature is beautiful. I live in an amazing location, and I can’t ever forget that. And the great thing is there are so many amazing locations around the world that produce amazingly stunning scenery.
The second lesson which ties to the first is that I need to slow down. Slowing down does far more then just simply making a trip longer to get from point A to B, it rejuvenates you.
Example: Today I went to Kolob to photograph Double Arch Alcove. This was a unique trip for me for a couple reasons. One- It was one of the first times I have ever done back country by my self, and two this was a sole photo trip. Well after traveling down the trail for a bit I had to turn around and go back to the car because a thunder storm had rolled in and I did not feel like being trapped/killed by a flash flood. So I went back to the car and went farther up the road to the Timber Creek Overlook Trail.
I headed all the way to the end hoping to photograph something interesting. I arrived around 7:15. This meant that my golden hour was about 50 minutes away and so I had time to kill. So I photographed, pondered and prayed (praying or meditation is a good thing when you have time alone in nature). I though about my current dilemmas with schooling and future career options. I talked with God about what I should do.
It was relaxing and calming.
Around 8:15 there was a break in the clouds that allowed for some sun to radiate through and allowed me to get some great photos. This window of opportunity only lasted a few minutes, and once it was done the clouds closed back over the sun, casting a cool light upon everything again.
I headed home after that feeling relaxed, recharged and rejuvenated.
We are all in need of nature. We as a species has been connected to it since we first arrived. It has only changed within the past few years where we have removed our self from it and thus we have suffered.
Going around online you can find a lot of studies that link our health with being in the outdoors. People who spend time in the outdoors have shown that they are more relaxed, healthier, more creative, and have less mental issues (aka depression, ADD, and other disorders).
I began this journey a little over two years ago when it came to writing this blog. In the process I have learned a lot about my state and my self. But interestingly enough, my understanding of the outdoors and my relationship with it has been changed by the use of relatively modern piece of technology, the camera.
If you’re feeling stressed or in need of some rejuvenation I challenge you to go outside and spend some time away from our civilized world. Just enjoy the silence and take a few photos and wait. I promise you, it will be worth it.
To see more of my photographic works head over to my website and standrephotography.wordpress.com