The Bonneville Salt Flats are an otherworldly place in Utah near the Nevada border, just outside of the town of Wendover, along Interstate 80. It’s a remnant of Lake Bonneville, which was a giant lake that covered a significant chuck of Utah plus parts of Idaho and Nevada. The Great Salt Lake is also a remnant of Lake Bonneville.
You’ve likely seen this place before, even if you’ve never been there. Almost 50 movies, documentaries and television shows have filmed scenes at the Bonneville Salt Flats, including Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End, Independence Day and Con Air. Plenty of television commercials and advertisement shoots have taken place in the stark and salty landscape. Award-winning photographs have been captured there, too.
The Bonneville Salt Flats are perhaps best known for fast cars. The Bonneville Speedway is a section of the salt flats that has been set aside for motor sports. Many land-speed records have been set there, including a couple that exceeded 600 MPH! Even if you are not racing, many people take their cars out on the salt flats for fun.
This was my second trip to the Bonneville Salt Flats and the first for my family. It might seem like this is just a flat and bleak desert, but upon close inspection there is plenty to find interesting. The kids had fun just exploring. The place is surprisingly photogenic, and it seems like every exposure is a keeper.
I used my Fujifilm X100F for a few of these shots. I was teaching my wife photography, and so she had that camera for most of the trip. The camera that I mostly used was my Fujifilm X-A3 with the 16-50mm zoom lens attached. Even though it is a cheaper camera model, it did just fine capturing great pictures.
All of these images are camera-made JPEGs. About half of the images captured using the X-A3 received some light post-processing using Nik Color Efex or Nik Silver Efex, and a few saw a little more robust editing. Many of them are straight-out-of-the-camera JPEGs using the different film simulations. I hope you enjoy these pictures that I captured at the Bonneville Salt Flats, an unusual place that’s unusually good for photography.