Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Enchanted Rock, part 5

with 37 comments

A couple of years ago I was shown a photograph taken by Brian P. Barnes of a geological structure at Enchanted Rock I’d never seen or even heard of. Eventually I learned that it’s called Window Rock, and that’s where I most wanted to go during our November 1st visit. No one in the park’s office could point out on a trail map exactly where the structure is, but one of the staff marked off a stretch of the Loop Trail and told me that Window Rock is located a short distance off that section of the trail. After trying several side paths and not finding Window Rock, I finally came to one that took me to what I’d been looking for.

That path led to the rock but not initially to the best photographs. The picture above shows how the side of the formation that greeted us was shadowed, given that the sun was in front of us. I got around that difficulty by literally working my way around to the other side for better lighting.

As with the jug-like boulders in the previous post, I spent time portraying
Window Rock from various angles and in different degrees of abstraction.

The view below strongly reminded me of the moai on Easter Island.

And so ends the series of posts devoted to Enchanted Rock.

© 2019 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 7, 2019 at 4:36 AM

37 Responses

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  1. how interesting. i love the different perspectives of this rock formation


    December 7, 2019 at 4:53 AM

    • Me too. If I go back at a different time of day I’ll see what other portraits I can make of it.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 7, 2019 at 6:45 AM

  2. And enchanting it certainly is 😉 how odd there is no distinct trail to this interesting structure.


    December 7, 2019 at 5:10 AM

    • The side trail is distinct enough but there’s no sign at the place where it branches off from the main trail telling visitors that that’s the way to Window Rock. There’s a nearby sign on the main trail pointing out a path to an overview in the opposite direction, so I don’t understand why there isn’t one for the path to Window Rock.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 7, 2019 at 6:51 AM

  3. Thank you, Steve, for the series on the Enchanted Rock! I also find openings, windows, or frames formed by nature very intriguing.

    Peter Klopp

    December 7, 2019 at 8:22 AM

  4. It does me, as well. It tickles me to learn that there are bodies hiding beneath the sod on Easter Island, holding up those heads. I wonder what might be lurking below this rock…


    December 7, 2019 at 8:59 AM

    • I’m glad you see the resemblance, too. My understanding is that the moai included torsos but not legs. You’re free to imagine what you will beneath Window Rock.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 7, 2019 at 9:33 AM

  5. I like the way you’ve captured a heart shape in the second and third pictures. I’ve been reading the part fascinating, part terrifying history of Enchanted Rock via the link above. I imagine the creaking and groaning is eerie at night.


    December 7, 2019 at 9:48 AM

    • I’m glad you heartily enjoyed the second and third pictures. People can camp at Enchanted Rock, so maybe someday I’ll spend a night there and find out what kinds of sounds the rocks produce, and also whether I turn invisible, as one of the myths mentioned in the article claims.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 7, 2019 at 10:00 AM

  6. These are some very interesting formations!

    Lavinia Ross

    December 7, 2019 at 10:52 AM

  7. Fantastic. Again. Think of the third shot at night with stars showing through the window.

    Michael Scandling

    December 7, 2019 at 11:08 AM

  8. I’ve enjoyed this series. These rocks may be enchanted, but their erosion to me brings home the idea that even stone, often the epitome of solidness and stability, like the Rock of Gibraltar, is still a just a sandcastle in the long run.

    Robert Parker

    December 7, 2019 at 1:06 PM

    • Well put: still just a sandcastle in the long run. Time is indeed relative.
      I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the series.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 7, 2019 at 2:58 PM

  9. The pebbly texture is fascinating. It’s weathered like sandstone, but doesn’t look like most sandstone I’ve come across. Once I get more settled, I need to read more about the geological features there. There’s so much focus on the dome, but there clearly are other delights to be enjoyed.

    The window calls to mind Monument Rocks in western Kansas, where the same sort of weathering has taken place. I still can’t get over those clouds, particularly in the second photo. I’m glad you were there to capture them.


    December 8, 2019 at 6:19 AM

    • I’ll trade you a visit to Enchanted Rock, which I’ve visited, for a visit to Monument Rocks, which you’ve visited. Don’t know if I can guarantee you the same kind of photogenic clouds that made for such good backdrops in many of the pictures you’ve seen here, and which I sometimes let take up as much space within the frame as the rocks themselves, as in the image you singled out. Maybe I can, because they resulted from airplane contrails, and I doubt the airlines will have changed their routes and frequency much by the time you make it out there.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 9, 2019 at 1:02 PM

  10. The texture is wondrous and this whole series has been most enjoyable.

    Steve Gingold

    December 9, 2019 at 2:50 PM

    • Merci, Monsieur. Enchanted Rock is one of the best places for landscape pictures in central Texas.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 9, 2019 at 6:05 PM

  11. I’m duly enchanted now, Steve.


    December 10, 2019 at 10:17 PM

  12. Super shots Steve .. great angles! Now that’s what I call a rock! 🙂


    December 11, 2019 at 12:21 PM

  13. Interesting! Rock formations are fascinating…


    December 28, 2019 at 8:20 PM

  14. Astounding. Thank you so much.

    Margie McCreless Roe

    March 13, 2020 at 10:31 AM

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