Sunrise over the Sandias

sunrise
Sunrise over the Sandias
sunrise
Sunrise over the Sandias, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Sunrise – and sunset – can be a magical time almost anywhere, but reliably so in the high desert country of New Mexico, “Land of Enchantment.” It is very easy to take our beautiful skies for granted, almost, because we have them so often.

One of the truly remarkable things about our skies, though, is that the exact appearance of a sunrise or sunset can never be predicted, nor how long its appearance will last.

This morning was basically overcast, but a light overcast at the time of sunrise. I really was not expecting too much, but I always watch until I am certain a show either never happened or is over. This morning I made ten photographs between 7:18 and 7:24 am. This is the only one of the images with such distinct rays arising over the Sandia Mountains, starting from where the sun was about to appear.

The magic of sunrise – and the sky in general – in New Mexico.

November Sunrise

November Sunrise
November Sunrise
November Sunrise
November Sunrise

New Mexico, “Land of Enchantment” is known for its light and spectacular sunrises and sunsets. Sunrises such as this November sunrise may not happen every day, but they do occur with remarkable regularity.

DH Lawrence stated it beautifully, and the New Mexico Magazine provided the quote:

I think New Mexico was the greatest experience from the outside world that I have ever had. It certainly changed me forever. . . . the moment I saw the brilliant, proud morning shine high up over the deserts of Santa Fe, something stood still in my soul, and I started to attend. . . . In the magnificent fierce morning of New Mexico one sprang awake, a new part of the soul woke up suddenly and the old world gave way to a new.

There are all kinds of beauty in the world, thank God, though ugliness is homogeneous. . . . But for a greatness of beauty I have never experienced anything like New Mexico. As those mornings when I went with a hoe along the ditch to the canyon, at the ranch, and stood in fierce, proud silence of the Rockies, or their foothills, to look far over the desert to the blue mountains away in Arizona, blue as chalcedony, with the sagebrush desert sweeping gray-blue in between, dotted with tiny cube-crystals of houses: the vast amphitheater of lofty, indomitable desert, sweeping round to the ponderous Sangre de Cristo Mountains on the East, and coming up flush at the pine-dotted foothills of the Rockies! What splendor! Only the tawny eagle could really sail out into the splendor of it all.”

First seeing, and then photographing a sunrise requires getting up in time to see it. 🙂 That would be very easy to do if one knew the night before that a sunrise like this would occur. For this particular sunrise and photograph, I thank my cat for demanding that I get up and provide breakfast! It was definitely worth it!

A Beautiful Sunrise

A beautiful sunrise from February 20, 2013.

Susan Brandt Graham
A Beautiful Sunrise

Albuquerque, and the Desert Southwest, are known for beautiful light and amazing sunrises and sunsets.

This image is from the morning of February 20. In the afternoon, the wind really picked up and clouds rolled in. That night, and in to the following day, we had snow. Although it was not a large amount of snow, we were grateful for it. The Desert Southwest is in the grip of a severe drought, and any precipitation is welcome.

Colorful and beautiful sunrises and sunsets are quite common here, but they are short-lived. This particular sunrise was extremely short-lived. The dark cloud you see on the right in this image moved in quite rapidly, and the reds and oranges in the sky disappeared as quickly as they arrived.

But, no matter how short, a beautiful sunrise is always welcome.