Posts tagged “rock

A Red Rock Canyon Abstract

Red Rock Canyon Abstract - © Christopher Martin-3217

The Red Rock Canyon is one of Waterton’s popular sites to visit.  My son had a great time parkouring along the slick rock, jumping across the shallow stream that the creek becomes in the middle of summer.  I photographed him mostly but the water, its ripples and the lines in this slab of rock, drew my attention for a minute.


Red Rocks in a Snowstorm

Red Rock Coulee is in Southeast Alberta near Medicine Hat.  It is rarely visited and the few paths see little travel.  For me, this is a wonderful landscape to photograph.

Heavy clouds and a prairie snowstorm made my visit there last weekend a fun challenge and created some very nice opportunities.  It had been a year and half since my last visit there and I enjoyed seeing this more wintry side of the area.


Bow Valley Trail Mountain Sheep

A large group of ewes were walking along this ridge with a gang of frisky youngsters in tow.   A bit further down the road were 12-15 rams that looked to have separated from this group as they were grazing on the south side of the highway.  Maybe they were sneaking away for some guy time.  This is around the time lambs are born but I didn’t see any really small ones here.   Not sure if they will be born soon or if they have been already and their mothers are keeping them in more remote spots for now.

These two younger lambs did not have the sure-feet and confidence of their more mature brethren which made their traverse of this steep, jagged part of the rock below the ridge an interesting walk to follow.

There are a number of great locations to see Bighorn Sheep when heading into the Rocky Mountains from Calgary.  The place where I made these pictures is one of the most accessible: it is a long stretch of the Bow Valley Trail between Exshaw and Canmore. The sheep can be frequently seen right beside the road, up the mountain slopes on the scree or, more dramatically, on the cliffs that loom 60′ above the road just north of Lac des Arcs.

This ram came up a few minutes after the herd of ewes and lambs had gone.  He was a beautiful animal and we loved watching him stride across the rocks.  This ended an incredible day on a fine note after having seen a herd of elk, a moose, a Barrow’s Goldeneye, a grebe, a mating pair of osprey, several hawks and a bald eagle between sunrise and sunset.


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.


The Chief of Elbow Falls

(Click the image above to open a larger and more detailed version)

The flow of water above, over and below the layers of rock that create Elbow Falls is a beautiful photographic subject at any time of the year.  In winter, with the ice and snow draped around the waterfall, I find the magic a little easier to work with and creating some compelling images a bit less elusive.

For as long as I have been photographing this spot, I have always seen the face of a chief in the rock outcropping that sits just below the waterfall.  Not only a face in the rock, the lines that draw the lips, the cheeks, chin and nose outline a sketch of the man who watches over this stretch of the river west of Bragg Creek in Kananaskis Country.


Red Rock Coulee on the Prairie in Southeastern Alberta

Copyright 2010 Chris Martin, All Rights Reserved

I was visiting family in Saskatchewan over the Thanksgiving Weekend and we stayed in Medicine Hat last night.  This morning, my dad and I went left the hotel in darkness, heading for Red Rock Coulee, about an hour’s drive south of The Hat.  The rocks giving the area its name have beautiful color and textures to match their unusual shape and size.

Copyright 2010 Chris Martin, All Rights Reserved

The coulee is part of a gently sloping hill that rises well above the plains to the south and the west affording a view across the prairies to Montana and Alberta.  Along with the elevated position came a steady wind which pulled in heavy rain to accompany the grey clouds stretched across the sky.  The wet rocks were a treat to photograph, which made up for the uninspiring sunrise (flat and grey).

Copyright 2010 Chris Martin, All Rights Reserved