I once had a conversation with a friend that was planning to visit the USA and he brushed it off as nothing really exciting, but I thought quite the contrary. I have so many fond memories of the US and I consider it as one of the most diverse countries to photograph. As we visited state to state, the landscape and scenery changed dramatically.
In June 2013, we road tripped across Arizona and one of the places we visited was Monument Valley (close to the state line of Arizona and Utah). Monument Valley is popularly filmed in many country western movies and it is also the place where Forrest Gump is running and decides to head home.
We drove across Highway 163 and although we didn’t actually enter the park (we rented a small Mini Cooper and were worried that the unpaved and rocky road would damage the car) we were still able to see the gigantic sandstone buttes that were spread across the land.
The first monument we came across on Highway 163. It was really windy that day and as I tried to open the car door, it flung open violently. The wind was strong and the sand stung my skin. In the distance you can see a sandstorm brewing.
It was quite intimidating driving a small Mini Cooper, when everyone else on the road drove large SUVs and utes.
Sun was setting and you can see Monument valley in the mirror.
Heading back and this again was the first monument we came across. By this time the sun was down and the sky was a wonderful purple-y pink. The monument against the sky reminded me of a magnificent fantasy land (although it didn’t translate very well in this photo).