The day started early for Prof. Tom Grier, Eli Xifra and Shannon Bolte who were in a van to Canyon de Chelly by 3:30 a.m. They had scouted a location a couple days earlier from which they could capture great visuals of the sunrise over the canyon.
They used flashlights in near total darkness to get to the selected spot and set-up cameras and tripods. Then they settled down to wait. Lots of shots were taken over a few hours hoping for just the right mix of orange sunrise-lit sky, blue still-night sky, and red rocks of the canyon.
Throughout the day, students journalism teams met to transcribe interviews, plan future interviews and begin editing photos and videos.
In late afternoon, a group drove again to the Junction Overlook of Canyon de Chelly and sat relatively still for several hours watching and photographing the sunset.
(above three photos by Sammi Luhmann)
(above two photos by Elisenda Xifra Reverter)
Most days, the students run constantly from morning to night and are happy to fall into the dorm room beds, exhausted. Today, they had time to sit, converse, relax and enjoy the beauty of the high desert of the Navajo Nation.
In the words of Edward Abbey: "The strangeness and wonder of existence are emphasized here, in the desert, by the comparative sparsity of the flora and fauna: life not crowded upon life as in other places but scattered abroad in sparseness and simplicity, with a generous gift of space for each herb, and bush and tree ... Love flowers best in openness and freedom."
(from Desert Solitaire, © 1968 Edward Abbey, Random House Publishing.)