Studio Address

14010 N. El Mirage Rd
El Mirage, AZ 85335

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Snow Blanket

Happy New Years......New Years Day 2011, Gold King Mine, Jerome, Arizona, everything was covered with snow......  Earlier in the day driving North on the 17 leaving Phoenix, I was unsure of the possibility of snow coverage in Jerome, but as we approached Cottonwood, doubt turned to promise as frozen fountains appeared along the roadside and the side of the hill that Jerome sat precariously upon was pure white, with the exception of the contrasting dark lines of rooftops perched on the steep slope.  As we made our way through town, we were positive that there would be good snow coverage at the mine.  I became restless, and could not contain my excitement.. the thought of the rusty plethora of vehicles that were scattered around the property, potentially sitting under a fresh coat of snow, made me want to explode.  I was worried that the owner would not be home and the gate would be locked, since during our last visit two weeks prior, the mine was closed for the Christmas holiday.   This time we would not be denied, we were in luck, and as we rounded the last corner just before the property began, today we would not greeted by a large chain link gate topped with rusty razor wire and a sign which a crudely crafted skull and crossbones was painted and the words" Trespass after 5:30 and Die" was hand scribed with what looked like blood.  We were in....once through the opening, we were fairly positive that we would soon be making our way through the maze of automobiles that were perfectly placed by the owner.   We made our way up to the house where we would pay our $10.00 entry fee.  Its all a blur after that...but luckily I had my camera with me and recorded the entire process.  I do remember the sun was shining brightly and the reflection of it hurt my eyes.... The snow was dry and fluffy, terrible for snowball creation, but nice for tromping around in.   The air temperature was a brisk 27 degrees, which did not seem to bother us at first.  We were somewhat prepared for cold conditions;  I had on boots, thermal underwear, jeans, t-shirt, and a sweatshirt, with a Northface shell and gloves just in case.   We shot all morning and afternoon, probably would not have stopped until we froze to death, however we became hungry and needed a break.  We ran into town, had a Ghostburger and headed back before we were finished chewing our food.  By this time the sun had made its way behind the mountain and most of the place was in shadow, which made for some wonderful light conditions, however it also made for some extremely cold temperatures.  Within 5 minutes, my fingers began to hurt from the cold, I was forced to put my gloves on and my pant legs were frozen stiff from the bottom up to almost my knees.  It was as if I were wearing bell bottom pants made of steel.  We made our way around shooting as much as we could, until we just could not take the cold any longer and the light ran out.  We knew we only had little time, the place normally closed at 5:00 pm.  We entered the house where we originally payed our entry fee with just 10 minutes to spare.  We said our fairwells, banged the snow off of our boots as we hopped in the truck and headed home.  EPIC!........Field Recordings