Empty and Full

I’ve mentioned before that the Little Cottonwood Canyon stream is empty for part of the year, as the water is diverted into collection points, sent to treatment facilities, and then included in the municipal water supplies for the greater Salt Lake City metropolitan area.  There is a time of the year, however, when the stream is allowed to run, as it contains too much water from the snow-melt to be collected in its entirety.  I rather enjoy the stark contrast in the images of the empty stream-bed and the full and rushing stream.

This photo was taken in April, 2012 before the season’s snow-melt…

And this photo was taken at the same location in July, 2011 during the height of the season’s snow-melt…


46 responses

  1. love rivers! 🙂

    May 25, 2012 at 7:34 am

    • Me, too, Marviiilous. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 7:57 am

  2. Poor rocks! . . . they’re drowning in there!

    May 25, 2012 at 7:39 am

    • Yes, they are getting a bit soggy. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 7:57 am

  3. I so understand that difference. Truly no middle ground.

    May 25, 2012 at 8:01 am

    • What an analogy for so much of life…thank you CJ.

      May 25, 2012 at 8:04 am

  4. Pretty amazing Scott! Great post!

    May 25, 2012 at 8:21 am

    • Thank you, Robyn. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 8:23 am

  5. Conjures up images of flash floods!

    May 25, 2012 at 8:31 am

    • Yes, it does…in a frightening way. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 8:32 am

      • Not to bring anyone down but we lost our home in a really freak flash flood in eastern PA in 2004. We were in the house and it did look like that for 3 hours! Cracked the foundation of the house, but you now see the upside, my gardens!

        May 25, 2012 at 8:36 am

        • Wow! That would be freaky…very frightening. And yes, what an upside…you with your beautiful gardens. 🙂

          May 25, 2012 at 8:48 am

  6. The second image is really beautiful, but I’m completely taken with the top image of the empty stream bed. The perspective almost envelops the viewer, and there is a softness to the tones that is very calming.

    May 25, 2012 at 9:08 am

    • I’m glad you could feel the envelopment, Melanie…that’s how it felt to stand there in the middle of the stream-bed…it also felt like I was in a place that I shouldn’t have been, knowing that it was not the natural order of things. Thank you for your nice words. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 9:18 am

  7. Those rocks could probably do with some arm-bands! 😛

    May 25, 2012 at 9:47 am

  8. James O.

    Holy smokes, I can hardly believe it’s the same spot. Nice post, I like the contrast between the two also.

    May 25, 2012 at 10:16 am

    • There is quite a contrast between them…thank you, James.

      May 25, 2012 at 10:21 am

  9. Isn’t it amazing how different an area might look through the seasons?.. Yesterday I was up in the capital building and in Winter it was bare with no tress and suddenly yesterday it looked like a forest! Great image…

    May 25, 2012 at 10:45 am

    • It is amazing, Lazaro…have seen the same thing in different locations here, as well…thank you. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 11:43 am

  10. This Cottonwood Canyon is some kind of place. It intimidates me, kind of. This is one powerful image, Scott. I will remember it.

    May 25, 2012 at 10:47 am

    • But it’s a very peaceful place, as well, George…soothes my soul. I’m glad you like the pictures, too…thank you.

      May 25, 2012 at 11:45 am

  11. Lovely images Scott. Amazing to see what a difference the snow melt makes. Great post!

    May 25, 2012 at 11:15 am

    • Thank you, Chillbrook…and yes, quite a difference. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 11:45 am

  12. Hey Scott! I love your sense of perspective in these shots. I like the ground’s eye view. It brings a sense of power and urgency to the scenes. Great shots and… Great rocks…I have a thing for rocks you know. Very enjoyable, thanks.

    May 25, 2012 at 11:42 am

    • I’m very glad you like them, Nancy…and your words bring-out other aspects of it that I hadn’t considered…thank you, too. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 11:47 am

  13. I still remember 1983 when the floods were running down the streets of SLC between sandbag barriers. It was a combination of lots of snow pack and a sudden arrival of hot weather. I love the comparison shots. The water certainly goes where it will, when it will… Hope you have a lovely Memorial Day weekend.

    May 25, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    • I have heard about that flood and read a bit about it, too, Gunta…State Street was a continuation of City Creek…running like a river for more than a week, I believe. And yes, water will go where it will. You have a nice holiday weekend, too…thank you, Friend. 🙂

      May 25, 2012 at 12:08 pm

      • I went back and took a second look at the two shots and what struck me was the way both the creek bed and the brush came back to life in the second one. The first shot has everything looking so dormant (or dead)… and then it all comes back to life with the changing of the season.

        May 25, 2012 at 12:34 pm

        • That is something that continues to amaze me, Gunta, living in a place again that has true seasons with periods of dormance and vitality. I love watching the transformation of a bare, post-snow mountainside turn into a rich green nursery of life…I understand it, I get it, I can describe it, but it still find it incredible…. Thank you for taking that second look. 🙂

          May 25, 2012 at 2:00 pm

  14. That’s amazing. I’ve never seen such a stream go completely dry. And how often do you get to walk around on a dry stream bed? That must be really interesting.

    May 25, 2012 at 6:21 pm

    • It didn’t go dry, Allen, during the non-peak flow months, all of the water is captured upstream and sent into the municipal water supply…but yes, it is incredible to walk in the bed, knowing that it will soon be running bank to bank with the snow-melt…and you wouldn’t even consider attempting to walk across or stand in it during such a time.

      May 25, 2012 at 7:48 pm

  15. pretty cool, thanks for sharing

    May 25, 2012 at 10:53 pm

    • You’re welcome, Elliot…thank you for visiting and for letting me know you were here. 🙂

      May 26, 2012 at 6:38 am

  16. On a ranch in Colorado, we prayed for good snowfall so that snowmelt like this could irrigate the fields in spring. To me, the melt looks so refreshing and promising!

    May 26, 2012 at 7:18 am

    • While I’m not on a ranch here in Salt Lake, I do and have had similar hopes for good snowfalls, hoping for the mountains to be thoroughly watered to help with the spring greening that might last well into and through the summer. And I agree…that water does look so refreshing and promising. Thank you, Scott.

      May 26, 2012 at 1:53 pm

  17. Beautiful shots.
    The first one is striking .
    Thanks for sharing.

    May 26, 2012 at 8:22 am

    • You are very welcome, Pattu…thank you for visiting and leaving your sweet comments. 🙂

      May 26, 2012 at 1:54 pm

  18. victoriaaphotography

    Love the angle of the first photo and love the comparison between the seasons.

    May 26, 2012 at 7:04 pm

    • I love the comparison, too, Victoria…rather incredible. Thank you. 🙂

      May 26, 2012 at 7:07 pm

  19. fantastic photos and the thought behind it!!!!

    May 27, 2012 at 6:48 am

    • Thank you, BHavanas…for visiting and for letting me know you were here by leaving your comment of nice words. 🙂

      May 27, 2012 at 6:57 am

  20. What a dramatic difference – thanks!

    May 27, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    • Yes, it is, Cathy…you’re welcome. 🙂

      May 27, 2012 at 3:32 pm

  21. Wow, interesting differences. Know about it partly (a lot of hydropower production around here), but the rivers are never completly dry..

    May 27, 2012 at 6:17 pm

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