Friday, July 22, 2016

Comb Ridge Sunset Glow

Comb Ridge and Comb Wash at sunset in July.
Comb Ridge in southeast Utah's San Juan County is a sheer wall whose western escarpment is mostly Entrada Sandstone. It's a monocline, a massive tilt in the Earth's crust at a fault line. It's here that the Monument Upwarp forms the eastern slopes of Cedar Mesa. Steep inclines. Just ask any bicyclist who's climbed the ten miles of adverse grade on Highway 95.

Fortunately you don't have know--or care--anything about geology to appreciate the beauty. The sheer red sandstone cliff faces, the vast vistas with no utility lines whatsoever.

Highway 95's cut through Comb Ridge, from the BLM campground at Comb Wash.
Comb Wash at Utah Highway 95 is a haven for campers in this portion of canyon country in the spring and fall. When daytime temperatures range from cool to warm. But in summer, rarely is a camper here. It's hot, even though the huge Cottonwood trees provide a lot of shade. Besides, now the high country mountain roads are finally dry (except when it rains), so why not go up there into the coolness?

At sunset time, though, when the low angle of the sunlight warms up the cliffs, it doesn't matter what time of year it is. It's time to photograph.

© Copyright 2016 Stephen J. Krieg