Goosenecks of the San Juan – Goosenecks State Park, Utah

Goosenecks of the San Juan – Goosenecks State Park, Utah

Goosenecks State Park is one of the coolest places I have ever been!

There really is only one view at the goose necks, and this is pretty much it. The field of view in this stitch is extremely wide, and captures pretty much the full breath of the vista. Again, this is somewhat of an unknown spot, and we only saw two other groups, both tourists, and both groups were from outside the United States.

I was absolutely struck with how silent the spot was!

This was a long time goal achieved – and then it was onto Monument Valley, which I unfortunately missed when I was in the region in 1992.  A dedicated post will follow (along with pictures of the general region which is fantastic – there is a lot more otherworldly scenery in this region beyond Goosenecks and Monument).

I saw a picture of this spot many, many years ago, and it intrigued me immediately.

I knew it was in Utah, but for the longest time didn’t know exactly where. For a very long time I actually thought it was up near Canyonlands National Park, northwest of Moab. it is actually in extreme southeast Utah, not far from Monument Valley.

Geologically speaking, this was formed over a period of millions of years, when the surrounding landscape slowly rose in elevation and the river carved “incised meanders”. The river is about a thousand feet below the surrounding plateau.

I was extremely pleased to be able to visit the spot, and to get this photograph. Many, many thanks to John Moore who agreed to make the detour on the way back from last year’s storm chasing expedition to pay a visit to longtime chaser friend Jim Williams (who lives in Cortez, Colorado), and to see both this and Monument Valley (it was great seeing Jim again!).

Got a lot of shots of this vista with the 14mm wide-angle Samyang, but I’m glad I took a number of overlapping shots with the Bower/Samyang 35mm lens (an extremely sharp lens!). Photoshop did a fantastic job with this five-image stitch, and am very pleased with the amount of detail that using the 35mm lens gave (the cover photo for this post – see above – is a full size crop). I believe I could comfortably enlarge this image up to 90 inches wide!