Following the heavy snowfall early in the week, I found a few different times to get out to photograph this interesting transition from autumn to winter. The cold snap caught the trees off guard and the leaves have been falling steadily since.
Ahead of the winter storm which hit late Monday, I went to Kananaskis to enjoy autumn in the mountains. The clouds were leaden, already suggesting snow when I watched them wrap around Mount Kidd in the fading darkness.
I waited for dawn on the low ridge above Wedge Pond. The little lake looked beautiful but the brightening sky was much less so. The clouds did diffuse the light which supported taking a few landscapes of the larch that ring one side.
I wanted to get a hike in so I packed up and headed off to the trailhead for the Galatea Lakes. I grabbed my tripod, threw on my backpack and headed up.
The trail followed Galatea Creek as it wound up the valley towards the lakes. I photographed steadily as I wandered along. It came as no surprise that I hadn’t covered more than a couple of miles before I needed to return home. It was nice to get lost really seeing and enjoying the forest, the splashing water and the mountains for a couple of hours.
When the snow was falling last week, I enjoyed trying to create some interesting images from the collision of weather with the fall landscape. The photograph I shared earlier drew some very kind comments about the style of painting it was similar to. I agree with Linda who saw suggestion of Pointillism. Using a short exposure of 1/400th of a second froze the snowflakes in that photograph. Here, I used a longer exposure of 1/40th of a second. The slower shutter speed let the snow trace blurry paths through the scene. I liked the level of abstraction that created.
I’ve been hunting for images of the autumn that has been hurriedly ushered in. Here is one from the day of the first snowfall last week. I was east of my home in Redwood Meadows and found this wonderfully coloured stand of trees. The snow continued on for much of the day and I looked for more scenes like this.
Thanks to Game of Thrones, this phrase is often heard. Yesterday Mother Nature provided her own reminder that far too soon winter will be here. I still hope we have a couple of months before it does but the snow is still on the trees this morning and does not yet look interested in melting away. I can’t say that I’m a fan of snow in September.
We have enjoyed a long fall season this year. Sometimes winter steals in before it seems like summer had closed off. This autumn is now closing in on two months and has been quite a nice season. I went to a small lake, Pilot Pond, which lies in the Bow Valley facing Pilot Mountain in the Banff National Park a week ago and felt the scenery around the water was a nice reflection of the fall we have had in the mountains.
(Please click any image to open a higher resolution version)
I was alone except for one female Hooded Merganser (Lophodytes cucullatus) out on the water biding its time, and once flapping its wings, before continuing south.
The days start cold but warm quickly. Still the trees show what the morning is just hinting at. The colours are coming in wonderfully and I have been enjoying my time out on the land enjoying them.
I was up in Banff National Park on Sunday shooting the sunrise behind Mount Rundle. After the early colors of dawn had left, I walked across the marshes west of the Vermilion Lakes towards the Bow River. The ice has covered most of the river along the couple of miles that I walked with snow blanketing the areas that don’t receive all day sun. When I saw this solitary leaf standing out of the snow, I thought it was a final sign that autumn had given way to winter. I’m excited for more of the white landscapes and the animals that like to be out in the cold.
On the walk back I found a very colourful hedge of Cotoneaster along the roadside.
I got out on the Friday morning for an early shoot in Kananaskis and I was met by an inch of snow outside my front door. Rather excitedly, I carried on to the back country and the snow had raised up to two inches off the grass.
I went to the South end of Barrier Lake and walked along the beach looking for images that would convey an autumn snowfall. This was my favourite, taken just off the water across the lake.
It would have been great to get a bit of sunlight this morning but it was very beautiful and quiet. A really wonderful morning up in the mountains.
O’Shaughnessy Falls in Kananaskis along Highway 40 near Barrier Lake.
I’ve driven by this small set of rapids a number of times and this looked like a great morning to stop and look for some different looks to this waterfall.
A bit of a hike up along the stream into the forest, I liked this scene of a lone flower amid the dark trunks and patches of snow on the ground. It has been a strange year weather-wise and this first image in this post seemed to speak to that. Below is a couple of alternative compositions of that scene.