[Edit:Reprocessed and re-posted on 2/11/11.]
I’ve made my way down out of the mountains, and over to the desert for the remainder of my trip. Before leaving the San Juan Mountains, I did a few fun overnight backpacks by myself, including Wetterhorn Basin, Ice Lakes Basin, and Highland Mary Lakes. After that, I proceeded to get rained on and slide around in the mud for two consecutive days in New Mexico’s Bisti Badlands, and I’m currently in Page, Arizona.
Anyhow, I’d like to share a photo I took on a ~9 mile out-and-back overnight trip to Wetterhorn Basin, in Colorado’s Uncompahgre National Forest. I hiked up the steep, but manageable West Fork Pass with my 40 pounds of camping gear, food, water, and photo equipment, and moseyed along towards the upper reaches of the Wetterhorn Basin, where I found an extensive and beautiful field of Sneezeweed and Rosy Paintbrush flowers. I set up my camp nearby, and hunkered down in my tent for two hours of torrential monsoon downpours and lightning strikes that were quite honestly WAY too close for comfort. Throughout all of this, however, a small patch of clear sky remained on the western horizon, and I knew what that meant: if it stays there, I’ll have fantastic sunset/alpenglow light against the stormy skies. Luckily enough, the clear spot remained, and I was treated to this extraordinary light. I definitely didn’t think about the chance of there being a rainbow up there!