Landscapes of Terlingua in Far West Texas

During my travels along the US/Mexican Border between Calexico, California, and Brownsville, Texas, my favorite borderland landscapes were found in Far West Texas around Marfa, Terlingua and Alpine, Texas. This is a good location to escape winter somewhat!

These photographs were taken in April of 2015 but I can only imagine what Christmas would be like in this Big Bend Country? As a desert rat, I would guess that the nights still get cold in winter, but the day time hours are fairly pleasant. According to the latest weather check for Terlingua, it’s 42 degrees Fahrenheit with an average of 70 degrees this week. Not bad for December!

The mountains off in the distance are Big Bend National Park. I highly recommend photographers avoid this national park because I was harassed by park rangers there and they don’t take too kindly to any photographers using cameras in the national park. Locals warned me that I would run into trouble and I have enough fodder for a good story. On top of that, I would recommend visiting Texas’s own Big Bend State Park which is much more inclusive towards visitors and in my opinion, more beautiful than the national park!


No Stranger to the Unknown

I’m not some armchair outdoorsman or researcher. I’ve been out in the elements my entire life and have seen things and experienced the unknown. I’ve travelled solo, thousands of miles, into some of the most isolated and rural areas where cellular service is nonexistent for days on end. The darkness of the desert has never spooked me and neither does the shadows that perk and stare at midday. I’m at peace in this world and I have walked a walk of experience that has given me the confidence to speak out…

Terlingua, Far West Texas

Despite Texas almost possessing no public lands, the entire region felt like a secure warm blanket. Most of the locals around Terlingua, and Alpine, Texas, were very down home and caring. I had the opposite experience upon entering Big Bend National Park after getting harassed by the park rangers for taking photographs inside of the park. If that day ever comes back to haunt me, I will write about it in grueling detail. I felt my Freedom of Speech was trampled on simply because I was covering border issues while working on a Kickstarter project which involved my photography.

So my hat’s off to West Texans. Their desire for freedom and liberty was refreshing in light of the post-9/11 world we are starting to sober up to. I don’t know where our country is headed? Back home in Utah, I grew up and was raised around BLM Public lands. There are pros and cons to the Federal Government managing lands out West in Utah. For the preservation of sacred Indigenous Sites they have done a relatively good job but some citizens in Utah feel like their rights and livelihoods have been trampled on by Federal Government Overreach. It seems we are reliving another Sage Brush Rebellion. Water and land in the West are becoming heated issues right now.

As an artist, I have never believed in wilderness but I do believe in the preservation and protection of sacred sites. In so many ways I have to maintain neutrality on some of these political issues because they are sort of like a catch 22.

The above photos was shot from Terlingua, overlooking the valley during sunset.

Big Bend National Park in Texas

I believe this photo was taken on the boundary of Big Bend National Park in Texas. Therefore it is protected speech and doesn’t require a commercial permit for me to display or exhibit but I will never forget how I was treated and intimidated by park rangers inside that park for being a simple photographer. They interrupted my Kickstarter project and I ended up leaving abruptly after feeling unsafe. Lessons learned about how I can no longer trust the Feds.

I was warned by local Texans NOT to go into the park that day if I wanted to have a good day. There’s a long story behind this incident which I may decide to blog about pretty soon. It’s a long story and part of a series of negative events that led up to this point, most of which were not related such as run-ins with the wrong people while traveling the borderlands. Etc.