Posts tagged “reflection

Radium Otter

Otter Abstract - © Christopher Martin-8903

A few years ago I photographed river otters swimming in a pond in between the Columbia River and the town of Radium in British Columbia.  They swam around for an hour and I had great fun watching them.  I never looked through these images afterwards but came across them while working on a client’s project.  I enjoyed having a look at these again and particularly liked how this image looked in black and white.


A Grizzly’s water walk

Grizzly on a water walk - 2014 © Christopher Martin

This wonderful bear strode through the estuary during low tide in the Khutzeymateen Inlet.  June is a time when all of the bears are wary of one another’s intentions but that didn’t stop this lady from walking down the centre of the river.  I saw her a couple of times during our trip into the provincial park but this was the only time where she was in the water.


Relaxing in the sunshine

Canada Goose on Wild Rose Lake - 2014 © Christopher Martin

A Canada Goose (Branta canadensis) surveys the lake from a one-legged position on the water of Wild Rose in Bragg Creek, Alberta, Canada.  Before taking up this spot, I watched it walk out on the patch of dirt towards the water – it looked like it was checking out its own reflection when it got to the lake’s slightly abstract mirror.

Canada Goose reflected - 2014 © Christopher Martin

 


A blizzard and a stream

Winter landscape - 2013 © Christopher Martin

I was walking along a forested stream that runs parallel with the Elbow River where they run under Highway 8 near Discovery Ridge on the western edge of Calgary on Saturday morning.  When the snow started to fall, it took very little time for the flakes to grow in both size and frequency.

In the blizzard - 2013 © Christopher Martin

The trees were soon cloaked in white, leaving the water alone to provide a little colour in the landscape.

Little rapids - 2013 © Christopher Martin

It was quiet with only the sound of the snow falling.  And a serene walk along this tributary to the Elbow River among the trees that edge its length.

The blizzard raven - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Near the end of the walk, a raven flew overhead – the snow visible between us.


Autumn glow at Wedge Pond

Morning glow at Wedge Pond - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with a Canon 17-40mm lens (at 17mm): 13 seconds at f/22 on ISO 400

With most of the aspens having turned gold in the lower reaches of Kananaskis Country around Bragg Creek, I was excited to get up to Wedge Pond to see how the colours were around the water and up towards Mount Kidd.  It was a cloudy morning but for a few minutes at dawn the sun broke through in a couple of places.  A strange, soft purple-pink glow illuminated the whole scene fleetingly.  I doubt I will ever get tired of visiting this place.


Great Blue Heron Reflected

A Heron's flight reflected - 2013 © Christopher Martin

I went to the small lake in Wild Rose on the weekend to see whether the cooler weather of the past week had scared off the pair of Great Blue Herons who summer there.  The shoreline was empty and I thought the lake had been left by these large birds until next year.  I turned my attention to the small island in the middle of the lake.  Under a stand of mixed trees at the far end one heron was standing a few metres back from the water’s edge.

Wild Rose High Four - 2013 © Christopher Martin

It stared my way for a few minutes and then resumed its previous activity – perched on one leg, standing motionless except for the occasional pull at a stray feather or similar grooming habit.  When a noise drew its attention it would stare for a bit and then continue.  I loved the colours in the bushes along the shoreline and their soft reflections.  I hoped to see the heron fly low against this backdrop so I waited.  And waited.

Great Blue Heron reflected - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Somewhere close to an hour later it finally stretched out its wings, stepped close to the water and took to the air.  It was worth the wait.  Flying low, the feet dragged in the water a couple of times as it crossed the lake.  I love watching Great Blue Herons fly, their wings are so large that it seems like they are barely putting in any effort when they fly yet they move at a good pace.

Slicing the surface - 2013 © Christopher Martin

The heron checked its flight as it arrived on the other side and started walking along the shallows.  I watched it stalk fish for a while and then I headed home to warm up.  I think it will be heading south soon.

Checked flight - 2013 © Christopher Martin

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Fishing in the shallows - 2013 © Christopher Martin


Fall sunrise at McDonald Lake

Autumn sunrise on Lake McDonald - 2013 © Christopher Martin - 2358

I drove up to Apgar, a small village in Glacier National Park, this morning.  I arrived at the southern edge of Lake McDonald in the dark and headed past the sleeping townsite for the rocky beach.  The full moon provided a bit of light out over the water and I could see the mist was already rising up into the cold air.  I started getting excited as the eastern edge of the sky brightened and silhouetted the mountain peaks above the north and east sides of the lake.  The glow in the sky deepened and the colours came in beautifully.

Silhouettes on Lake McDonald - 2013 © Christopher Martin

As the intense colour began to fade, I was able to balance this great stem of autumn leaves with the lovely Grinnell argillite rocks under the water (the first image).  A very beautiful morning in Montana’s Glacier National Park.


A Ruddy Duck Outing

Ruddy Duck - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with Canon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.4x extender: 1/2500 second at f/6.3 on ISO 800

The Ruddy Duck is an odd creature.  Blue bill, white cheeks, russet toned back feathers with liberal sections of black and motley brown.  I find them to be a beautiful bird but I wouldn’t take issue with someone who felt differently.

Duck flap - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with Canon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.4x extender: 1/1600 second at f/6.3 on ISO 1600

Ruddy flaps - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with Canon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.4x extender: 1/2500 second at f/6.3 on ISO 1600

Along with photographing Yellow-winged Blackbirds and Eared Grebes during my last visit to Frank Lake, there were several Ruddy Ducks that swam nearby and were caught within my viewfinder.

Bill cleaning - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with Canon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.4x extender: 1/2000 second at f/6.3 on ISO 1600

The males were more prevalent, swimming in the open away from the reeds.  I’m not sure whether the females were shy or, more likely, staying close to their nests.  A few did pass by, this one came right in front of the blind providing a nice opportunity for me.

A female Ruddy Duck paddling by - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with Canon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.4x extender: 1/1250 second at f/6.3 on ISO 800

The males came and went, chasing each other occasionally but mostly just skimming their bills along the water catching insects.

Water chase - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with Canon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.4x extender: 1/5000 second at f/6.3 on ISO 1600

Splash attack - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with Canon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.4x extender: 1/5000 second at f/6.3 on ISO 1600

These ducks are known for their spiky tail which they often hold straight up when on display.  They seem very formal, almost like a soldier in uniform and at attention, when they do.

Spiky tail on display - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with Canon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.4x extender: 1/3200 second at f/6.3 on ISO 1600

Very cool birds.  I’m hoping to see their ducklings on my next visit to the Frank Lake Conservation Area.

A bubbly greeting - 2013 © Christopher Martin

Canon 5DIII camera with Canon 500mm f/4 lens and a 1.4x extender: 1/3200 second at f/6.3 on ISO 1600


Prairie Aurora

Prairie Aurora - 2013 © Christopher Martin

The Northern Lights on the weekend were beautiful.  On Friday morning they were active from 10 pm through to 5 am Saturday morning.  Fiery, green ribbons rippled under the stars with faint echoes of blue and purple streaming skyward.

(for a higher resolution version, please click on any picture)

Northern Lights in the city - 2013 © Christopher Martin

When I received an email from Aurora Watch’s alert service, I was in Calgary finishing dinner with my friend Jack.  We headed up to a hill that overlooks downtown to check the sky.  Even with the orange glow in the atmosphere from the city’s lights, we could see shimmering swaths of green.  That whet the appetite and we headed west along the Trans Canada Highway out of the city and into the rolling hills to the west.  A small marsh south of Cochrane being our destination to take in the lights.

Green contoured - 2013 © Christopher Martin

By the time we were at the pond, it was after midnight and the early wisps of color had intensified in color and solidity.  The thick bands stretched west and east, from one horizon to the other. With the Northern Lights reflected in the water, there were some interesting images available.  I also posted another photograph separately called The Phantom Menace which is a favourite of mine from the night.  You can see that image here.

Aurora abstract - 2013 © Christopher Martin

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A different broadcast - 2013 © Christopher Martin

The aurora was at its most discrete around 2 am with beautiful details etched into the fabric swimming between land and sky.  The Cree named these colourful displays the Dance of the Spirits.  I really like that.  On this evening, the spirits enjoyed a long spell on their dance floor.

A shimmering veil - 2013 © Christopher Martin

With the east starting to brighten ahead of the coming sunrise, we were a bit restless for another viewpoint so we followed the road west for a little while.  This small industrial plant was overlooking the fields and when we stopped to have a look, the aurora was pulsing in what turned out to be the final flurry of the night.

Aurora over flames - 2013 © Christopher Martin


Last Night’s Northern Lights

Phantom Menace - 2013 © Christopher Martin

The Aurora Borealis lit up for a couple of hours last night so Jack and I were out until 5 AM watching the ribbons stripe the night sky.  There were few clouds and it turned out to be a very enjoyable performance.

A few images from the same night can be seen at this post.


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