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Badland Blooms



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It’s a marvel how life can flourish given the chance. Such delicate circumstances can lead to unparalleled beauty in otherwise arid lands. These flowers had b...
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It’s a marvel how life can flourish given the chance. Such delicate circumstances can lead to unparalleled beauty in otherwise arid lands. These flowers had been waiting over a decade to sprout up. Their fragile seeds lay just inches below the surface. In contrast to the time is takes for such wonders to come to life, it’s mind blowing how fast it can be taken away and destroyed. ⁣

There’s been many publications recently about the geology and ecosystem surrounding Factory Butte. Many still believe that human caused motor travel will be washed away and erased after it rains, so there’s no harm in opening up the area to cross country OHV travel. This is simply not the case.⁣

Contrary to popular myth and the BLM’s repeated misrepresentations, these tracks don’t simply disappear after the next rain. Photographs taken after historic flooding still show extensive ruts across the landscape. The tracks channel rain water which easily erodes the pulverized soil and deepens the tracks! Driving over the soil also turns it to powder that easily washes away in the rain.⁣

John Dohrenwend, a retired U.S. Geological Survey geologist and professor at the University of Arizona, says the OHV-related damage in Factory Butte is very real. His research reveals accelerated levels of erosion on Factory Butte hillsides from OHV use, and significant damage to the crust on the area's Mancos Shale, which he says could take decades to repair.⁣

The BLM itself has proclaimed the Factory Butte area to be among the “most geologically unique and scenic areas administered by the BLM.” Yet they secretly opened the entire area up to motorized travel without public input to cater towards a single interest group.⁣

Visit suwa.org-?s=factory+butte to learn more about conservation efforts.
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35 Comments |
NatureLoverJJWal
 
NatureLoverJJWal October 11, 2020
I love this colors.
richardpetersen Platinum
 
richardpetersen October 13, 2020
A Great Work ...!!!
JoEldred PRO
 
JoEldred November 10, 2020
Cool picture!
Creule Ultimate
 
Creule January 29, 2021
I love the Desert when it blooms! Great photo, I really like the purple colors repeated in the clouds. The balance of color makes the image very appealing. Also thank you for the background of this beautiful Badlands area. Keep up the conversation efforts our children’s, children deserve it.
DAsEye Platinum
 
DAsEye June 18, 2021
Great shot, love the colors and leading lines
johnhaymore PRO+
 
johnhaymore June 19, 2021
Appreciate all the kind words everyone.
LeeHuang
 
LeeHuang June 29, 2021
luv the purple in this!
dewaynerawlings PRO+
 
dewaynerawlings July 22, 2021
Wonderful capture!
wilreese
 
wilreese August 28, 2021
That’s beautiful……. I love purple
DanaCarruthers Platinum
 
DanaCarruthers September 22, 2021
Stunning
derpassigraf Platinum
 
derpassigraf October 02, 2021
great colors!
DanaCarruthers Platinum
 
DanaCarruthers March 22, 2022
Congratulations on being featured. Well deserved.
p_eileenbaltz Platinum
 
p_eileenbaltz March 27, 2022
I love everything about this! Congratulations on your award in the Mother Nature Contest.
DanaCarruthers Platinum
 
DanaCarruthers March 27, 2022
Congratulations on the honorary mention. Stunning image.
kristenfelzscofield
 
kristenfelzscofield April 01, 2022
Love the colors and textures.
SamanthaChabot
 
SamanthaChabot April 06, 2022
Where is that
Megabyte-Mike
 
Megabyte-Mike April 10, 2022
Excellent.
Custerlb PRO
 
Custerlb April 22, 2022
WOW, very beautiful
Anon_1234
 
Anon_1234 August 03, 2022
Beautiful
mariaquaresma PRO+
 
mariaquaresma August 26, 2022
A very beautiful compo!
RJRiggins Platinum
 
RJRiggins October 14, 2022
I read your notes on the area, it is very sad that people act with impunity and destroy habitat with these types vehicles. Thanks for the great photo. Factory butte is on my list of places to photograph.
Sarah_888
 
Sarah_888 December 18, 2022
Gorgeous! What a story. Thanks for sharing!
alirezajalilpour
 
alirezajalilpour February 09, 2023
please follow me \nim a bigginer photographer \nyours photo is so great\u270C\uFE0F😉
98052
 
98052 March 14, 2023
great shot and story!
cavazbe PRO
 
cavazbe March 22, 2023
What an impressive display of flowers and great capture & thanks for sharing the background of the photo.
heatherbenton Platinum
 
heatherbenton March 25, 2023
Stunning! Great shot
kristinayoung_9903
 
kristinayoung_9903 April 04, 2023
Love this photo
Phototales
 
Phototales April 17, 2023
Beautiful....
diannechapman_5606 Ultimate
 
diannechapman_5606 April 26, 2023
wow
CandyUpshaw
 
CandyUpshaw May 28, 2023
Your photos are Spectacular!! Very eye opening.You show us things an places some of will never get to see, Thank you 🙏
Saunie
 
Saunie June 19, 2023
That is spectacular!
paultownley
 
paultownley Apr 08
Awesome colours, brilliant originality.
davidnorris_6475
 
“ mauve over ….. I wanna take a photo
Amathiew
 
Amathiew Apr 15
This is sooo amazing.
brendabrooks
 
brendabrooks May 08
Wow
See all

Behind The Lens

Location

This photo was taken in the Badlands of Southern Utah.

Time

The setting for this photo was early evening, a little while before sunset as a storm was racing by.

Lighting

There was a thunderstorm bringing in micro-burst rain clouds which would dance in front of the sun, causing different areas of the distant butte to light up. The clouds also filtered the direct sunlight which gave the flowers a softer tone.

Equipment

This was shot with a Canon 5D Mark IV, with a 16-35mm f2.8 lens. Sirui tripod, and Breakthrough Photography Polarized filter.

Inspiration

This area of badlands is usually stark, barren, and void of any type of vegetation. For these delicate flowers to bloom, special circumstances have to occur where an abundance of moisture visits this region and seeps down into the ground from the summer of the previous year and continues through winter and into spring. This rare occurrence only happens about once every decade.

Editing

For this scene, I wanted to distant butte to be in focus just as much as the flowers in the foreground, so I used a technique called Focus Stacking. Taking photos and focusing on several areas of the composition, followed by layering all of those images in Photoshop and blending only the sharp pixels together. This result is an image that is in focus all the way through.

In my camera bag

Depending on the landscape I intend to shoot, I'll change out my equipment. Generally, I'll have my camera body, then 2-3 lenses that vary in range from a6-35mm, 24-70mm, and even a 100-400mm depending on the distance away from the subject matter. A sturdy tripod is a must, especially when shooting panoramas and focus stacking. I also pack a pocket rocket to blow off any dust from my lenses and do so regularly.

Feedback

Timing is everything. These flowers only bloomed for a few weeks before dying and completely disappearing. Study the environment you are visiting, weather patterns, and learn about any restrictions the area may have. Planning ahead will help increase the chances of success once you're on location.

See more amazing photos, follow johnhaymore

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