The Lifeless? Desert

From a side trip to White Sands on a trip to Bosque del Apache in December 2017. I was fascinated by all the tracks on this slope, most of them probably made within a day or two.

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Technical Details

Is this a composite: No
5DIII, EF28-70 f/2.8 @ 28mm, hand held, f/22, 1/250, iso 800, aperture priority, +1 EV. Processed in LR and PS CC. Taken at 9:05 am on December 16th, 2017.

I really like this Dennis, I know the “standard” is to look for “trackless” dunes when photographing them but your image really works with these tracks coupled with the side lighting to make them pop. The top left portion comes across a bit hot on my screen but I tend to have my brightness up high due to ambient window light. Other than that it is nice to see a dune image WITH tracks!

Dennis, at least for me, the tracks give the image life. Makes me wonder who’s been there? Also wondering who or what made the larger imprints? Lot of action and textures to enjoy in this photo. Nicely seen and captured.

Thanks, Keith. It was pushing it but not blown. I did burn it a bit in processing but could probably go further.

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I adore animal tracks on a dune. They make you realize that the desert dunes are not lifeless at all. The colors in this are lovely, with that bottom row of warm grasses. I could see cropping off the right side, so that light, blank area in the LRC was not there.

Dennis, this sure makes me want to get a closer look to see who made those tracks. I really like the “story book” sense here with the relatively fresh small tracks, the big (possibly human) but much older tracks and the one line of small tracks going over the top. I also think the grass at the bottom adds an important element.

What a great find!! Some sort of critters have been very busy. A burn in the LR would be good.