As we headed up the 14 to start this trip, there was an ominous feeling in the air. The wind had been blowing non-stop for several days and the car was working against a strong headwind. Sand dunes seemed to be the wrong place to be heading in the middle of a windstorm. The forecast was for calm later in the day, so we had to believe it would work out. When we arrived at the Eureka Dunes, 4 and ½ hours and 240 miles later, we found no wind. It was a calm, balmy afternoon and we were the only ones there. Dave Anderson, my wife Chris and I were the only ones foolhardy or brave enough to make the trip. We like to think we will do almost anything for the shot.
The dunes can be seen from more than 15 miles as you approach the site and they don’t seem that big. They got taller and taller as we approached.
After setting up camp we hiked up the dunes to find some good spots to shoot sunset and moonrise. There were several interesting patterns in the dunes to shoot while we waited for sunset. The dunes took on a golden glow as sunset approached. The moon rose over the dunes and we got that picture as well.
We hiked back to camp by moonlight and cooked dinner and went to bed. By this time 3 other groups had arrived (to parasail off the dunes by the light of the ful1 moon.) but no additional photographers. We were up before dawn to watch the moon set and wait for dawn. We shot the opposite side of the dunes at sunrise. You could watch as the dunes changed color from a brown grey to a golden tan as the sun hit them. On the hike back to the car we made several shots of the cracked mud flats, and took some panoramas of the dunes.
We ate breakfast and packed up for the trip back to Lancaster.
Article and Photos by David Wilkins