Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Hop Valley Sunrise

Hop Valley Sunrise
11.5” X 10”
Acrylic on a reclaimed cabinet door - upcycling!

A few years ago, me and “the boys” (Clint and our two hiking buddies Bob and Peter), went on a backpack trip in Zion through Hop Valley down to La Verkin Creek. It was October, but still very warm, so the morning we hiked out, we loaded up our packs and hit the trail in the dark wearing our headlamps. 

The walk started with a steep climb out of the canyon and by the time we made it to the top and started to cross the narrow valley, the sun was up. But, the cliffs blocked the sun—so it took a while before the light hit the west side of the valley in a blaze of color. But when it did, it was spectacular. Something I will never forget.

Apologies to my hiking mates, who were ahead of me when I took the photo, I didn't include them in the painting. As usual, I was bringing up the rear.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

High Country Afternoon

High Country Afternoon
24” X 18”
Acrylic on Canvas

One day last summer, when the rivers finally slowed down after an epic winter, we packed up a lunch and our fishing poles and headed to higher ground. We were excited to get out to a creek we’d scouted in the fall that had a promising fishing hole. Getting there requires traveling a hellacious road (that gets worse every year), but it’s worth every brain rattling thump and bump.

We wandered along the picturesque little creek and tried our luck, tossing our lines into small pools. It was a gorgeous day and to our delight, the mosquitoes had decided to spend their time elsewhere. I didn’t get so much as a bite—from the fish, that is—but enjoyed every minute, soaking up the beauty of the canyon and the burbling water. Clouds started to gather and when thunder clapped and the first few drops fell we decided to head back to the car.

We weren’t quite ready to go home and it was too late to fish, so we decided to explore a road fork we’d seen on the way in and perhaps find a nice spot for lunch. The road wound its way up a hill and alongside another small creek, where we found a hunter’s camp that looked out over the view that became this painting.