Unexpected Weather Assignment Winner Suzanne Mathia

'Chocolate Falls' by Suzanne Mathia

“Chocolate Falls” by Suzanne Mathia

Congrats to Suzanne Mathia for winning the Unexpected Weather Assignment!

“Grand Falls is a natural waterfall system located 30 miles northeast of Flagstaff, Arizona, in the Painted Desert on the Navajo Indian Reservation, often called ‘Chocolate Falls’ for good reason. At 185 feet tall, it’s taller than Niagara Falls. It dumps snow melt or monsoon rain into the Little Colorado River below. It is famous for its extremely muddy flow, which is a major contributor to Little Colorado River opacity. Heavy rains or snow melt will produce spectacular viewing, photography and sound whereas the scarcity of water will produce only trickles or no flow at all. There are many great photo opportunities here, from the wide panorama to the up close intimate patterns of the rocks and the water flow.

“Knowing the best bets for catching the falls at flood stage are in late spring and during monsoon season (roughly early to mid-July through late August / early September) I checked the water levels at USGS website. With the water level at or above 11.5 feet the water cascades over Grand Falls in spectacular fashion,” says Mathia.

Equipment: Canon EOS 1Ds Mark III, Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens.