Vermilion Lakes, Banff, Canada by Bruce Smith

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Picture Story

My friends from the U.K. were visiting for 10 terribly cold days last winter. Overnight temperatures were down to -35 degrees Celcius! Despite the cold temperatures, we were up before dawn every morning, bundled up with many layers and lots of those convenient chemical hand warmers and foot warmers! We were hoping for a beautiful sunrise at the iconic Vermilion Lakes, overlooking Rundle Mountain in Banff National Park. With natural springs along the shore of the lakes, portions of the lakes remain unfrozen and so there can be lots of mist rising, especially in cold temperatures. Sometimes you can smell the sulfer in the air from the escaping gases and liquids from underground. In this case, there was no brilliant sunrise, but the mist had frozen onto the foreground grasses forming amazing hoarfrost. I got down low to get close to the grasses and blended multiple exposures for both depth of field and range of exposure. It can get tricky finding a spot without footprints, and the shore can get very spongy as it's always wet!

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