rock formation

Rockhound State Park & Florida Mountains New Mexico landscapes

Rockhound State Park & Florida Mountains New Mexico landscapes

Wondrous rocks of Rockhound & Florida Mountains

Over the course of three hours in the desert southeast of Deming, New Mexico covering over 50 miles, many of it dirt road, I was treated to various views of both Rockhound State Park and the Florida Mountains. These have unusual names, but perhaps because of their unusual rock formations. I was actually being paid to enjoy these views as I actually in the midst of a six location rural land real estate photo shoot. Even though it was of course hot, the weather was otherwise near ideal for day time landscape photography with plenty of clouds and mountains on the horizon in most directions. I was quite busy driving to all these locations, but I did take time to pause, and realize the amazing desert environment I was all out all alone in.

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Lover's Leap Canyon in Rockhound State Park of Spring Canyon

Lover's Leap Canyon in Rockhound State Park of Spring Canyon

Lover’s Leap is Steep

Traveling all over the state of New Mexico for rural land photography work allows me to explore some off the beaten path places in between shoots. The latest was Spring Canyon State Park, which is really part of Rockhound State Park, and this particular canyon is Lover’s Leap Canyon. That’s complicated! All without mentioning these parks are made up of the Florida Mountains! The trail up Lover’s Leap Canyon is allegedly only 0.9 miles, but it takes over 30 minutes due to how steep and rocky it is. The view just keeps getting better and better as the trail gets higher. Once at the top, take off your backpack, get out a snack, and enjoy the fruit of one’s hiking labors! This is another hidden gem in New Mexico.

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Bisti Badlands New Mexico True Landscape HDR Photography

Bisti Badlands New Mexico True Landscape HDR Photography

Bisti Badlands for New Mexico True Explorers

Truly in the middle of nowhere New Mexico, but it has to be somewhere, so it is in the northwest of the state, Bisti Badlands hides itself to all but those willing to leave behind civilization to set foot on it. No amenities, no paths, Bisti Badlands just exists. If you have the vehicle and the desert exploring skills to get into it, the rewards can be seen in the photos below. The rock formations in both macro and micro view are equally odd.

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City of Rocks State Park New Mexico Photography

City of Rocks State Park New Mexico Photography

Getting to the City of Rocks

My job as a professional photographer in New Mexico takes me all over the state. After photoshoots, I sometimes have the opportunity to seek out unusual places in the remote area I happen to be. On a recent 4-day photo shoot in Silver City, I had the chance to visit City of Rocks State Park. This is a place definitely off of the beaten path, as Silver City itself is out of the way, and City of Rocks is another 30+ minutes drive into nowhere. The investment in miles is certainly worth it though, as you can see in these photographs this is a unique place of natural wonder. Out in the midst of flat desert is an appropriately named city of unusual rock formations. There are no set trails or paths in this park, you have to just wander. It’s fantastic!

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Joshua Tree National Park Color and Black & White

Joshua Tree National Park Color and Black & White

Named for trees, spectacular for rocks

For me, the phrase joshua tree has always been associated with the famous U2 album from 1987 and its iconic cover art. There is actually no joshua tree in the photo. I finally got a chance to visit Joshua Tree National Park and soon realized that the eponymous trees are not the stars of the park by a long shot. The real attraction are the rock formations. Some tower, some are piles, they are all sitting there challenging you to climb them. This photo story presents a set of black and white photos of a lone climber on a rock face and a series of color photos one of which is made up of silhouettes of me, Jessica, Kiki and Artie!

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Mexican Hat teetering rock formation in Utah Drone Video & Photos

Mexican Hat teetering rock formation in Utah Drone Video & Photos

Utah is amazing

I imagined being able to find places totally not on the agenda during a recent 5-day whirlwind Western Road Trip with eldest friend Terry and his wife, Beth, visiting from Florida, and of course also with Jessica, her dog Artie, and my beloved puppy Kiki.  Mexican Hat rock formation was one such place.  This day Jessica and our dogs got up at 5:15am to see the sunrise in Monument Valley, then we all reconvened and visited Forrest Gump Point and then Goosenecks State Park.  Seeing a sign for Mexican Hat and having time, and a Jeep Renegade Trailhawk, we turned down an unknown dirt road and started exploring.

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