This picture was taken during a week-long trip with friends to the southwest in early January 2015. Getting up early on what was easily the coldest morning of the week was definitely a challenge, especially after staying up half the night shooting stars.
For the price of some frozen toes and fingers we were rewarded with the one truly epic sunrise of the trip - though this picture was actually taken shortly after peak color as many of the clouds began fading back to gray.
Frankly, this picture did not make my original 'first cut' but after letting it languish on my computer for more than a year, my feelings about it changed. I have come to realize that as experience levels and processing skills change, it is worth the effort to go back and review older images that may have unrealized potential. For me, it was a good lesson learned as this image is now a personal favorite.