The inspiration for this sweeping landscape photograph of the Santa Cruz coast was 100,000 monarch butterflies. This past weekend, I made my poor wife and baby wake up way too early so we could head down to the Natural Bridges sanctuary to catch a glimpse of the Monarch Butterflies before they made their migration down to Mexico for the Spring. I insisted that it was critical to get there before anyone else got there, stating that "It only takes one person to ruin the shot".
We got there, parked, threw on our mittens and rushed down to the sanctuary waving my camera around like a fool, expecting 100,000 beautiful butterflies to descend and start dancing along with us. What we got was a cold, empty grove with nothing but a fat blue bird mockingly squawking at us . Apparently, the butterflies were frozen and don't like waking up before noon. It also seems we missed the peak season by about three months, so my bad. I looked down at my daughter in the stroller who was giving me a disapproving stare, trying to keep warm in her little sheep hat. Sorry, baby, daddy will bring you back next year when the butterflies are plentiful and the weather is warmer.
On the way out of the sanctuary we stopped at a vista point to get this photograph of the coast line. This is the start of the journey the butterflies take on the migration down south. It may not be 100,000 monarch butterflies, but I dedicate this one to my little girl and her rosy cheeks. =)