frozen lake

I have been itching to take out my camera since my night shots near Banff a couple of weeks back but I just hadn’t had the chance until this weekend. Ash was away for work so I decided to head out early on Saturday morning and try my luck at some more night shots out in the mountains. The forecast said there was going to be variable cloud cover but it seemed like it was going to clear up. Not only could I take shots at night of the stars, I wanted to hang around for sunrise too so I was happy to have a back-up plan in case it was overcast.

I set my alarm for 3am and surprised my myself by getting out of the house by 3:45am. Those of you who know me well, are more than aware that I am not much of a morning person but I was able to do it. Driving out there, I noticed it was incredibly dark and that I couldn’t see any stars, not a good start but I wanted to keep going anyway because I knew I would regret it if I turned back. I decided to head to Lake Minnewanka which is near Banff, I hadn’t been there before so i was keen to check it out. All I knew was that it was a long narrow lake surrounded by mountains. I got out there and it was pitch black. I could just make out the mountains but took a few long exposure shots around 30 seconds to check out my surroundings. It was not ideal at all, no stars, overcast and windy. I jumped back in the car and decided to get some sleep for a couple of hours until sunrise. I missed out on the stars but I was sure I would get a nice sunrise… Wrong! About 45 minutes before the sun was scheduled to come up, I scoped out a couple of locations and set up at the first… I took a few shots here and there and eagerly awaited the sky to light up in pinks, purples and and oranges as we normally get, that didn’t happen at all. it was like someone flicked a switch and suddenly it was daylight. The cloud cover was too thick and the sun at this time of year is too low so I got nothing I came for at all.

I took a few shots still and these two are all I had worth sharing. It was so quiet and peaceful out there, the only noises I could hear was the wind whistling through the pines and the sound of ice cracking. I wasn’t out on the ice on the lake even though it was so thick (in some places I could see it was about 10″ thick) but that sound of it cracking was a little too unnerving for me. Due to the dull light, I decided to convert them to black and white just give them a little bit of character and moodiness. A bit of a disappointing outcome (photography wise) but you can’t win them all. I did enjoy getting out there though.

Lake Minnewanka