Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Road Trip... Not!

My friends John Prouty and Juan Garcia invited me on a little photography safari this past weekend. The plan was to start out at Seven Springs and then work our way through part of the Tonto National Forest. I had never been to Seven Springs and never deep into the Tonto NF. Thankfully, John offered to drive with his Ford F350. Good thing... my Acura MDX would have fallen apart if we had taken it!

The road to Seven Springs is paved part of the way, then it becomes a graded road. We stopped at the Seven Springs campground, which was empty. We were there for maybe an hour photographing with 4x5 and 8x10 cameras. I exposed my first negatives of 2010... an 8x10 landscape of the stream and trees, then a detail of American Sycamore bark in both BW and color 4x5. Scans to come as I develop them.

We then took off for the wild unknown. John had not been back this way in over 20 years, but not much changes here. The road goes from graded to "primitive". That means virtually non-existent... strewn with rocks the size of basketballs at points as you are actually driving through (sometimes) dry river beds. It is truly beautiful out here, in a minimalist sort of way.

The Verde river at Sheep's Bridge prior to crossing

Dead leaf composition

In fact, we had to cross the Verde River twice on the way back. It was either that and save a few hours, or backtrack and get back well past dark. John braved the cold water to test the depth to make sure we could cross... only three feet... and he skillfully crossed it in no time. The truck on the other side in the photo decided not to risk it even after watching us cross.

John Prouty testing the depth of the Verde River prior to crossing.

Verde River after crossing

Juan Garcia photographing some saguaro

North of Horseshoe Lake

And what trip would be complete without a little Photoshop fun. No, John did NOT actually walk the cable across the river...

1 comment:

laurent said...

Looks like great fun! Would love to join you all sometime!