Posts tagged “ice

Ice and Snow: lines and shadows

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The waves of mild temperatures then bitter cold that have been winter’s pattern this year have played havoc with the ice.

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Along the Elbow River the once smooth sheets of water frozen layer on layer, have buckled and split along the channel.

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The temperature went into free fall yesterday but the blue skies pulled me outside this morning. Near the edge of the ice down the Elbow I spent some time photographing the forms created by the blanket of snow, broken ice cover, and the long shadows of winter.

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It is too cold!

We are just coming out of a long cold snap here on the eastern flanks of the Rockies.  Temperatures started out around -10°C (14°F) last week and then dropped to -25°C (-13°F) a couple of days ago and have stayed there.  This image is from a stretch of the Elbow River just a couple hundred meters from my home in Redwood Meadows (west of Calgary).  Most of the river there is now iced over but I haven’t been back at dawn to photograph the difference.

Winter along the Elbow River - 2013 © Christopher Martin
Apparently we start climbing upwards later today and should be just below freezing by the weekend.  That will feel balmy – I hope the forecasts hold!  I love the winter landscapes but this year when the temperature fell below about -15 my enthusiasm for the season fell too.  Maybe some powder skiing on the weekend will remind me of the upside of winter.


Watching a blizzard

Frozen coyote - 2013 © Christopher Martin

This coyote didn’t seem impressed with the storm that tore across the Foothills on the weekend.  The front of the blizzard was pretty wet so when the temperature started to drop, everything built up a layer of ice.  I suppose this creature didn’t feel like trotting around with the extra weight, and the blinding snow, so it laid down and burrowed in.  It was resolute to stay put and only watched me as I set up my camera and lens for this picture.  Most coyotes will perk their ears so I wondered if this one may have been injured or sick.  However, I went by a couple of hours later and the coyote had moved on.  The storm was still raging so maybe dinner had called her to action.  When I’d seen her earlier, I thought she might not leave until the weather improved considerably.


Early morning with Vermilion and Rundle

Dawn at the second Vermilion Lake was beautiful with some lovely colour in the sky around Mount Rundle early in the sunrise.  As the sun climbed, I moved into the contrasts and this one worked well in black and white.

Dawn at Vermilion Lake - 2013 © Christopher Martin


Winter at Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka has a beautiful shoreline on its southeastern edge.  I have not spent much time along the rocks there but a few days ago I was there for about an hour in the morning and really liked the area.  The ice coating the rocks where there were gaps in the snow worked in nice contrast to the stormy skies crowding over the ridges of Inglismaldie on the far side of the water.


Calgary Landscapes: A Lost Sunrise

During the lunar eclipse last December I was shooting off the Centre Street Bridge in Calgary with the moon to the west of me.  As the moon came out of eclipse, I turned my attention to the east and photographed the sunrise over the Bow River looking east from downtown.

I wrote a short post on the eclipse the next day but then we left on vacation and I forgot about these images.  Looking through Calgary sunrise photographs in my library, I rediscovered these and put them together here.


Ice on the Elbow

After the big snowstorm Monday night, the clouds cleared and towards the evening, the light was beautiful and I was pulled outside.

Before the sun set, I photographed the sunlight on the tree boughs along the path to the Elbow river.  Getting down to the river, the snow was over a foot deep. It was fun to walk along and photograph this river delta just before night fell, looking for interesting relationships in the landscape.

I walked to the far side before I found some breaks in snow and ice where I could see the water.

I used a telephoto lens to close in on the ice formations with a tripod to keep the camera steady over the exposures which stretched up to 10 seconds.

I returned home under moonlight which was very enjoyable as well


Bragg Creek Landscapes: Winter Wonderland

When the sun went down on Saturday, the stars came up and then the snow started.  Before 8, it was snowing hard and when I got up on Sunday morning, there was nothing to indicate that it had let up at any time in the night.  We had almost a foot (30cm) of white blanketing the land.  We cleared the driveway and then went sledding at the hill just off of our deck.

After a little lunch, I got outside on my own set on exploring the photographic opportunities.  By this time the storm had broken up and the sky was blue and the sun was bright.  Just more fun elements to work with.  Here are some of the images that came out of my afternoon walk in the forest and along the Elbow River.


Icy Whiskers

I walked up to a small group of horses in West Bragg Creek this morning as the sun was slowly warming up their frigid meadow.  They were lined up along the fence, likely waiting for their morning hay.  This mare walked towards me and when she was close I noticed the ice frozen onto the whiskers around the mouth.  It was -19°C so the moisture in her breath was freezing as soon as it was exhaled.  The distortion in perspective of a wide angle lens created an interesting view of her head when I lowered the camera and put it very close to the nose.


Elbow Falls: Winter’s Last Gasp?

I went up to Elbow Falls on Sunday following a heavy snowstorm over the weekend. There were a few warm days leading up to the blizzard so I was hoping for heavy snow in the trees and on the rocks with some good stretches of open water on the river. I was not disappointed.

I’ve tried to stay away from this section of the river but haven’t been able to do it with any consistency. It is a beautiful place and a very special location for me to photograph.


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