Alstrom’s Glory

Lake Powell, which straddles the borders of Arizona and Utah, is a man-made wonder. Once, not so very long ago, the Colorado River wove its way peacefully through the area, although it did some amongst some spectacular canyons with towering and severe walls–a landscape that perhaps should have been preserved. But it was decided to dam the river for our own uses, and Glen Canyon Dam was built. Eventually, the lake was created, inch by inch, as the mighty Colorado was tamed, and the waters reached ever higher along the canyon walls.

Because of the unique geography of the region, the lake was by no means regularly shaped. It snakes and weaves through many canyons, and the shoreline itself is approximately 1,900 miles–a staggering length. One particular overlook of the lake, and my personal favorite, is seldom visited, despite the two million or so annual visitors to the area, is called Alstrom Point. Although directions to it are straightforward, it does require over 25 miles of rough 4×4 trails, and the ability to drive through deep and shifting sand. Once reached, however, the effort is more than rewarded. This photograph represents the glory and joy that can be Alstrom Point at sunset. The clearing clouds hold court over Gunsight Butte and the surreal color combination of the water’s blue and sandstone red give a perfect counterpoint to each other.

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