THE CANADIAN ROCKIES

I spent five long days hiking and photographing in the Canadian Rockies with my college friend Rich. The sun rises at 5:45am and sets at 10:10pm in the middle of July and we were determined to see every bit of light every day we were there! It was an amazing place - you are constantly surrounded by high mountain peaks, emerald lakes, glaciers, pine trees, beautiful clouds, and clear mountain streams. We stayed more towards the Jasper end of the Rockies to avoid the crowds near Banff.

The trip was amazing. We washed our face and head in the coldest clearest mountain streams during long hot hikes. We hiked in warm sun and cool 75 degree air. We walked along lakes and streams that were emerald in color from the melting glaciers. We saw the glaciers of the Columbia Ice Field spread across multiple peaks. And we saw wildflowers everywhere. We were up and down the Icefield Parkway which is an amazing 100 mile road winding down the valley carved by the Athabasca and other rivers - completely surrounded by tall mountain peaks on both sides - for all 100 miles.

MOUNTAIN PORTRAITS

A funny thing happened as I worked with the images from this trip. I tend to prefer the intimate landscapes - the small scenes, that when viewed as a group, provide a feeling of the place we visited. I tend to downplay the “grand landscapes” as images anyone could make - if they just traveled there and pushed the shutter button of the camera. But I realized that isn’t the case. The grand landscapes can carry just as much feeling and personal expression as the smaller scenes. I searched the web and found many grand landscapes of the Canadian Rockies - but they don’t look like the images I made there. I grew to like these images as my favorites from the trip and as I lived with them and looked at them for awhile, I started to see them as portraits of the mountains we visited - each with it’s own unique personality.

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THE INTIMATE LANDSCAPE OF THE CANADIAN ROCKIES

These images are the close up views - not macros, not impressionistic. They are images of the small scene, usually in quiet light with a calm atmosphere. It’s not the drama of the grand landscape, yet it has a command and presence that makes you linger over the scene. This is usually the kind of photography I like to do the most and what many people would walk right by. In their rush to see or photograph the grand scene, they might miss the quieter moments that can be just as compelling. They too, tell the story of the Canadien Rockies - just in a different way.

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MORE FROM THE CANADIAN ROCKIES

These images round out the best from our trip to Jasper and Banff. They fill in the gaps between the grand “Mountain Portraits” and the intimate scenes. The story of our trip would not be complete without these images of the places we enjoyed.

[Click on any thumbnail to see the full image]