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Once a year Dillard’s does inventory across the entire United States in all of it’s stores. Those who audit the inventory are volunteers from within the departments across Dillard’s. When I opened the signup sheet and noticed Farmington, New Mexico was one of the locations I immediately volunteered for my first ever store inventory.

I had actually been to Farmington the previous year on a whirlwind New Mexico trip to photograph the annular solar eclipse over the Rio Puerco Valley. So, when I noticed Farmington on the list, I immediately jumped on it.

The inventory process itself is an overnight process that involves a whole lot of counting, “tombstones”, and 5 hour energy drinks. It was fairly miserable, because I had already been awake 17 hours. It wouldn’t have been so bad had there been a direct flight to Farmington that didn’t take you to Timbuktu and back. In order to arrive on time, we flew into Albuquerque and drove a rental car the rest of the 3 hours. If our flight had arrived on time, we would have made it into Farmington around 3 in the afternoon. With our luck however, we had a delayed flight in Little Rock which set us back 3 hours. So instead, we arrived around 6 or so that evening with little time to sleep and prepare for the long night ahead.

That ended up not being too bad however, because on the way we passed this great view over Bloomfield, New Mexico; arriving at the perfect time to catch the sunset light over a the San Juan River valley with Silver Mountain off in the distance. The scene was beautiful.

The crazy thing about this image is how large the mountains in the distance look. Silver Mountain is over 50 miles away! It’s incredible the scenes out there. As you’re driving you can see the mountains waaay off in the distance and they already look huge from so far away. However, as you keep driving they just gradually get bigger, and bigger, and bigger. It’s a neat effect and one you don’t see here in Arkansas with our gradually rolling hills.

If you haven’t guessed it yet, this month i’m featuring photographs of the trip Annie and I took out west at the beginning of the year. You can expect scenes from Monument Valley, Zion National Park, and perhaps even a few slot canyons. I hope you enjoy this series of photographs I captured out in the Wild Wild West.

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