Day Five: Saying farewell to Holbrook, we continued to Canyon de Chelley. The views of Spider Rock were unbelievable and to make it even better, we had the overlooks all to ourselves. Next on the list was Monument Valley, which was everything I imagined it would be and more. One of the most iconic (and crowded) views of “The Mittens” can be seen when you park at the visitor center. Once we hit the trails in the SUV’s, the crowds thinned dramatically and we felt like we had the park to ourselves. The group then decided to split up to take in the sunset at either Monument Valley or The Valley of the Gods. We concluded the night with all of us gathering at The Swinging Steak for dinner.
Day Six: That morning, in a foggy, lack-of-caffeine haze, I broke one of my major rules: NEVER delete images in the field. Not paying attention, I formatted the wrong SD card about twenty minutes before our tour was due to start in Upper Antelope Canyon. That sickening feeling that comes over one when such a tragedy strikes can make a grown man cry. Nonetheless, I forged on with our tour offered by the Navajo. This was one of the busiest locations on our tour. Due to the crowds, the guides would clear an area for us and then start a 2-minute timer in order for us to shoot and go, so fast shooting and choosing the proper settings were crucial. Due to the high winds, dirt and dust are inevitable so I would recommend if you choose to go to take a weather sealed camera and prepare to embrace and endure nature. Once we returned, I chose to stay in while the rest of the group went out for another shoot. After a shower and a quick rest, I’m happy to say that my digital forensic expertise came to my rescue and I was able to recover my (accidentally) formatted SD card. Upon everyone’s arrival back, it seems I missed quite an eventful evening which included a stuck SUV, a rescued motorist, and not much in the way of photo ops.