Category Archives: Mountains

The Last Light of the Day

There was a break in the rainy weather and I was able to get out and take some images. In the Northern Hemisphere in the winter sunrise and sunset appear farther south along the horizon. I find it creates this beautiful golden light at the start and end of each day. Click on a photo to see a larger size.

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Fall Foliage

The Autumn colours usually take centre stage this time of year. The unseasonably hot conditions led to more muted colours. I like taking photos early in the morning because there is little wind and you get nice reflections in mountain lakes. When the sun rises, the wind picks up, and the opportunity to take images of reflections disappears. Click on a photo to see a larger version.

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A Rare Encounter

The middle of October is a time when I start to think about taking images of Fall colours in British Columbia. After driving in the dark for a few hours I arrived at my location and started taking photos of the Autumn foliage. While I was adjusting my camera settings and tripod I started to feel like I was being watched. That’s when I saw the large pointy ears with distinctive tufts of black hair. It was a Bobcat ( Lynx rufus ) that was sitting quietly behind me. I quickly changed to a telephoto lens and was able to capture a couple of good images before it disappeared into the forest. Unfortunately, the background consists of pavement and cement. The photos would’ve been perfect if I had photographed this beautiful wildcat in its natural environment. Click on a photo to see a larger version.

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This photo was taken with a telephoto lens. The image shows downtown Vancouver and in the distance mountains on Vancouver Island. Click on the image to see a larger size.

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A Tale of Two Tea Houses

In early July I did some hiking in the Lake Louise area. I started at the Chateau Lake Louise and hiked up to Mirror Lake, then Lake Agnes, and its European-styled tea house. There were too many people so I didn’t stop and hiked around Lake Agnes to the switchbacks that lead to the top of the Big Beehive. Here you’re rewarded with a stunning panorama of Lake Louise. From there I descended on the Highline trail which had lots of big rocks, roots, and stumps. I was glad I had my hiking poles. Eventually you join the Plain of Six Glaciers trail which leads to another tea house. I pressed on to the Plain of Six Glaciers viewpoint and ate my lunch underneath the hanging glacier of Mount Victoria. What a great day. Click on any photo in the gallery to see a larger version.

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The Canadian Forces Snowbirds

The Snowbirds or 431 Air Demonstration Squadron performed over English Bay last night. ┬áThe light was very harsh and the sky wasn’t very interesting, but I still had fun taking images of this Canadian icon. Usually the Snowbirds use nine CT-114 tutor jets to perform their formations, but last night Snowbird # 6 was missing. I know in the past they have sometimes performed a ‘missing man’ formation, but I can only speculate that one plane had some mechanical issues and was unable to perform. Click on any photo to see a larger version and then scroll through the gallery.

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The Peak of Fall Colours

Autumn is a time of unparalleled beauty on the west coast of Canada. The mixed forests of deciduous and coniferous trees become a patchwork of red, yellow, orange and green. I was fortunate to be out with my camera on a day that also included a dusting of snow in the mountains. I thoroughly enjoyed chasing the light and Fall colours. Click on a photo to see a larger version and use the left and right keys to scroll through the gallery.

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Joffre Lakes Provincial Park

Joffre Lakes is a beautiful hike that passes three lakes with turquoise blue water. The colour is caused by ‘rockflour’ or glacial silt that is suspended in the water and reflects blue and green wavelengths of sunlight. At the upper lake you get an impressive view of the Matier glacier and Slalok mountain which is 8704 feet high. Hikers need to obtain a day use pass and will be turned away if they don’t have one. Click on each of the photos below to see a larger version. If you click on the square in the top right hand corner of the image, the photo is displayed on a dark black background.

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The Granite Monolith

Today I hiked to the top of the 2nd Peak of the Stawamus Chief in Stawamus Chief Provincial Park. All hikers must obtain a day use pass, which is an attempt by BC Parks to manage visitation levels in the more popular parks. The granite cliffs are world famous for their climbing and also a nesting area for Peregrine Falcons. After climbing a steep trail, chains and a ladder, which felt like two hours on a StairMaster, I was rewarded with incredible views of Howe Sound, the Squamish area, and Garibaldi Provincial Park. I shared my lunch with a chipmunk and a Steller’s Jay. On the top of the peak pine trees grow on the granite and it’s a very fragile ecosystem. Due to the fact that we’ve received very little rainfall for the last forty days the pine trees didn’t look very healthy. Thankfully, there is some rain in the weather forecast for this weekend. Click on a photo in the gallery to see a larger version.

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Rock and Ice

It was very warm and smoky, but I enjoyed camping for a week in Banff National Park. At Lake Louise I hiked up to the Plain of Six Glaciers viewpoint, which is past the tea house and a great place to eat your lunch. In my photo below you can see Mount Lefroy on the left and Mount Victoria on the right. In the middle is Abbot Pass which was named after Philip Stanley Abbot who was an experienced climber who died in 1896 trying to be the first climber to ascend Mount Lefroy. He was the first climbing fatality in North America. It’s hard to see in the photo, but at the top of Abbot Pass is the Abbot Pass hut which was built in 1922 by Swiss guides working for the Canadian Pacific Railway as a base for mountaineers. The route up the pass is known as the Deathtrap because of its exposure to avalanches and crevasses.

Lawren S. Harris was a painter and a member of the Group of Seven. He did abstract work of Lake Superior, the Rocky Mountains, and the Arctic. One of my favourite paintings is one he did of Mount Lefroy in 1930 which is part of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection.

” When I first saw the mountains, travelled through them, I was most discouraged. Nowhere did they measure up to the advertising folders, or to the conception these had formed in my mind’s eye. But, after I became better acquainted with the mountains, camped and tramped and lived among them, I found a power and majesty and a wealth of experience at nature’s summit which no travel-folder ever expressed.” Lawren S. Harris

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