Thursday, February 10, 2011

Sabino Canyon...

While everyone went to the Lost Barrio, I made a curried chicken salad on a bed of lettuce with roasted cherry tomatoes on toasted sour dough for lunch. I also made "potato chip substitutes"... basically roasted potato slices doused in olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper. I also made a colorful fruit salad with cranberries, blood oranges, grapefruit, Fuji apple slices, and a tangy citrus vinaigrette.

After lunch, part of the group ventured forward to Sabino Canyon. It's a short drive away to the foothills of the Catalinas where the Canyon is.

Below are some of my favorite images captured on the walk. I got to know Baba and Dawn even better and love them all the more after our walk!

I found a piece of plastic ribbon, tied to a tree marking a path or some other purpose. This would not be the only splash of red discovered during the walk.

One of the things that I'm always suggesting to the students when taking pictures is to look down or to look up. I think we're very locked into our regular field of vision, never moving outside of what is comfortable. But the slightest glance up can reveal a cathedral of wintery white branches framing fragments of a blue-blue sky.

I love the gnarled roots, trying to find purchase in the rocky soil along the riverbank. They reminded me of tough hands accustom to hard labor, working and reaching for something more.

At first glance, it just looks like a pile of rocks. But if you look closer, you can see in the stillness of the water the reflection of much more. Slashes of sky and a mirror image of the boulder, which rotated to the left forms the shape of a heart.

Some of the washes and creeks filled with cold water were strewn with algae of the most vivid green. It looked ethereal, like the wispy hair of a nymph or river deity. The decaying leaves, in translucent grays and muted browns, and the smooth white stones added to this magical feeling.

The cardinal perched in the branches. It was there in the monochrome of the dusty sage and frost-bitten browns and grays.

The quality of the light in the canyon was magical. Everyone seemed to glow. The hills and the mountains seemed to shimmer. On more than one occasion, we stopped and just soaked up the beautiful light, being present and connecting with the Canyon.

Dawn looking very glamorous as a breeze winded through the canyon in the shadow of a mountain peak.

I reached into one of these tidepools of carved stone. The water was icy cold.

I used the timer function on the camera to get this shot. I had an epic fail the first time. It was zoomed in far too close and captured only our dusty feet. This one turned out well though.

From left to right: Dawn, Baba, Jeannette Cook, and me (Andrew Thornton).

The Sabino Canyon trail is 3.8 miles long. Baba and Dawn posed at each of the major mile-markers. We laughed about how each mile we hit, we looked a little more wilted. The first marker we all mounted triumphantly. By the third... not so much.

It was a glorious day. It is such a different landscape from my home in Pennsylvania. Despite it being foreign to me, in some small ways it feels like home – like part of me is meant to be in the desert, soaring between the saguaros with the ravens and the cardinals in a place that seems to stand still in time, but is ever changing.


AJ said...

I think that green creek picture is my favorite so far!

My husband and I used to hike Sabino Canyon all the time when we were dating. I think it's time to go back :)

Carla said...

Many years ago we visited this area. My brother lives in Prescott AZ which is another beautiful area of AZ. It is a magical state.

Anonymous said...

I loved our walk and am missing you already! xxx

dawn said...

Wow.....these are beautiful! I have tears in my eyes from remebering how lovely the whole day are awesome. Looking forward to seeing you in October!

Barbara Lewis said...

Looks like the perfect place to decompress after the show!

Andrew Thornton said...

It was definitely one of the highlights of the trip. The scenery, the company, the food... everything was just perfect!