Rafting the Colorado River

Ron Niebrugge Moab, Photos, Travel, Utah 8 Comments

Rafting on the Colorado River, near Moab, Utah.

Rafting on the Colorado River, near Moab, Utah.

This looks fun!  While growing up in Alaska, I did a ton of rafting – I miss that.  We just found out that you can rent kayaks and rafts in Moab for not much money, at least compared to what rentals cost in Alaska.  I don’t know if we will have time, but it is tempting!

Behind the Rocks, Moab, Utah.

Ron Niebrugge Moab, Photos, Travel, Utah 9 Comments

Behind the Rocks Wilderness Study Area (WSA), Moab, Utah.

Behind the Rocks Wilderness Study Area (WSA), Moab, Utah.

I spent two evenings hiking around trying to find a nice vantage point to photograph this very unique region – this was the best vantage point I could find.  The 24 Hours of Moab was held on the other side of this area.  I guess you could say, it was behind Behind the Rocks.

I thought it would be a fascinating area to explore, but these things are huge, I don’t see any way in there without doing some serious climbing with ropes and stuff – something beyond my capabilities!  I was reading about the area on the BLM website, and I thought this summed it up well:  “There are extreme topographical constraints to foot travel within this WSA”

This was captured with a 100-400 at 400 from 655 meter away on the opposite side of the Colorado River.  The exposure was a 20th of a second @ f/11 and a ISO of 100.

Pua Sawicki and the 24 Hours of Moab

Ron Niebrugge Moab, Photos, Travel, Utah 21 Comments

Pua Sawicki at the 2009 24 Hours of Moab.

Pua Sawicki at the 2009 24 Hours of Moab.

When we left Pua Sawicki well after dark on Saturday night, she was well on her way to another National Championship, and more importantly, a world record for distance traveled by a women on a mountain bike in 24 hours.  She once rode 281 miles in a race, but it wasn’t sanctioned by the Guinness Book of World Records – this race would be.

We got up early Sunday morning and immediately checked the on-line results, and were shocked to see her current lap taking much longer then normal.  We kept an eye on the computer and finally saw she rolled in about an hour later then normal.  We hoped she just had a mechanical problem, and would start knocking off fast laps again, so we jumped in the truck and hurried over to the race so we could be on site before sunrise.  Our worst concerns were realized when we arrived only to see her support tent empty of workers and gear, we knew then her race must be over.  Her husband Ron later confirmed that she had gotten very sick during the night, and finally had to drop out.  Bummer!  Pua and her husband are super nice people – we hope they have lots of future success, I’m sure they will.

Since we were already at the race, we went ahead and photographed other riders.  The steep hillside pictured below was the scene of many dramatic wrecks.  I felt a bit guilty standing there and photographing such mayhem, at least at first.  But it became easier, when,  every rider had the same response – they would turn to me and ask if I got it!  Thanks to the soft sand, we didn’t see anyone get hurt.

A rider goes head over wheels during the 24 Hours of Moab, in Moab, Utah.

Kakkan Creager of team Quadruple Gnar goes head over wheels during the 24 Hours of Moab, in Moab, Utah. Team Quadruple Gnar won the men's 18 and under championship.

24 Hours of Moab Photos

Ron Niebrugge Moab, Photos, Travel, Utah 11 Comments

2009 24 Hours of Moab Mountain Bike Race, Moab, Utah.

Richard Moquin of team Bazi at the 2009 24 Hours of Moab Mountain Bike Race, Moab, Utah.

I thought I would share a couple of photos from the 24 Hours of Moab Mountain Bike Race.  I’m here to photograph Pua Sawicki, who we met in our campground – we have camped near them the last two years here in Moab.  Her husband and crew have been running me around on all terrain vehicles so that I can photograph her on the course – I’ll post photos of her tomorrow.  Right now, she is over a half hour ahead of the nearest women, and looking strong.  She is hoping to set the world record for distance traveled on a mountain bike trail in 24 hours.

A rider at sunset, 2009 24 Hours of Moab Mountain Bike Race, Moab, Utah.

Nick Nisbet of team Phoenix Multisport 2 leaves at sunset, 2009 24 Hours of Moab Mountain Bike Race, Moab, Utah.

Canyonlands View

Ron Niebrugge Moab, Photos, Travel, Utah 17 Comments

Green River overlook, Canyonlands National Park, Utah.

Self portrait, Green River overlook, Canyonlands National Park, Utah.

This is the last light of day at one of my favorite Canyonlands viewpoints.  The warm light was really making the red rock glow – I actually used Photoshop to desaturate this image as it didn’t look realistic.

There was no way Janine was going to get out on this point, so I set everything up, changed jackets with her, and had her hit the shutter as I stood on the viewpoint.

Take a look at more of our Canyonlands National Park photos.

Three Gossips, Arches National Park, Utah

Ron Niebrugge Moab, Photos, Travel, Utah 16 Comments

Three Gossips, Arches National Park, Utah

Three Gossips, Arches National Park, near Moab, Utah.

I wasn’t in the right position, but as I hiked around Arches National Park Monday morning, I noticed the possibility of capturing the Three Gossips, and the nearly full moon, right at first light.   So I went back Tuesday with this image specifically in mind.  I love the warm light on red rock!

See more Arches National Park photos.

On TV !

Ron Niebrugge Moab, Photos, Travel, Utah 11 Comments

MSNBC

MSNBC

On Friday, as we were getting ready to head out the door, MSNBC contacted us for an image of Arches National Park.  The photo was aired along with a story on the last minute law changes being made by the outgoing Bush Administration – one of which would allow drilling on the outskirts of Arches National Park.  It happened quick – the photo was on the air just over an hour after they contacted us, so I decided to grab a quick photo of the TV.

This Saturday night, a couple of my photos of Spokane will accompany the ESPN’s coverage of a Gonzaga basketball game.