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Arches National Park Photo Guide: Off the beaten path (part 5)

If you visit Klondike Bluffs or Herdina Park, or perhaps drive the four wheel drive road from Klondike Bluffs south, you’ll notice a ridge of rocks that line the western boarder of Arches. I call this ridge Klondike Ridge since I’m unable to find a map that gives the area any specific label. As splendid an area as it is, I’ve always wondered why it hasn’t been annexed by the park.

I’ve climbed in this area as often as I’ve climbed in Herdina or Klondike Bluffs. It’s far too broad of an expanse to cover in a hard day of hiking, at least if you explore. I generally drive to Dalton Well and enter the area from the west side, which means walking over pillows of rock with deep cut fissures. When you reach any high overview, you’ll be treated to views like Klondike Grandview (above), which shows Klondike Bluffs in the distance.

KR Serpentine Gap

Between these huge fins you’ll be treated to views such as Serpentine Gap. Finding your way up and down can be a challenge, but it is absolutely amazing that most of the fins are accessible if you take time to look. The draws can also present obstacles do to sheer walls that are impossible to scale.

KR Windy Wave

The draws are sculpted with erosion exposing strata pocked with huecos. Sparse vegetation takes hold wherever there is sand as depicted in Windy Wave.

KR Evening Spire 2

Many of my favorite shots are looking up at features such as Evening Spire. Pinnacles can be found on many of the ridges, and share some of the strata that is evident in Klondike Bluffs.

KR Up

Again looking up in this image entitled Up, you get a feel for the immensity of the towering walls. This composite is with an unusual cloud that was photographed in Lansing Park in California.

KR Flaming Ridge

Evening brings on the color that is often enriched by the golden light as in Flaming Ridge. This is typical of the fins and draws that stretch for miles, yet in all the similarities of the structures, the differences will make every shot unique.

KR Sunrise Divide

Camping west of the ridge, I was up at sunrise and treated to this glorious shot I call Sunrise Divide. The sky is my typical composite which is much more colorful than the original photograph. More to follow.

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