Morning Clouds

Morning Clouds

Shiprock, a diatremic monadnock, rises abruptly from the virtually level surrounding plain. The east face reflects morning sunlight while a wind-driven cloud clings to its 1700 foot summit. Located within the Navajo volcanic field, it is a classic geologically-distinct landform of the Colorado Plateau. The landforms of the Navajo volcanic field also figure prominently in the empirical knowledge and culture of the indigenous Navajo people.


Having seen it on several trips over the years, Shiprock is my favorite formation in N.M. The early light and atmosphere are magical, and such a dramatic sight.

Bill—I too have seen this in passing many times before I made the time to explore and photograph it. I shot the west side the previous evening, moved to the southeast, camped overnight and arose before the sun to make this image as the sun was rising.

This is stunning Bob, the light and color here magnificent. Perfect job of processng on this image, you nailed the way that blowing cloud and sky looks.

Thank you Ed. It was an amazing morning!


An incredible moment and even better capture. Wow, this is awesome.

Thanks for sharing.


Thanks, Lon. I knew the event and light were special that morning. I made a large number of images, hoping to improve my odds of getting “just the right one.”

Such a beautiful place and the lighting is superb.

Thank you Daniel. To quote Ansel Adams—“Sometimes I arrive just when God’s ready to have someone click the shutter.”

I’ve seen a lot of Shiprock images, but this one is THE best, hands down for me. Yep, timing is everything…almost. Your processing did this scene justice. Cheers

Thank you, Ken, for your generous remarks. It is always challenging to make a unique image of an icon.