Emerald Lake, Yoho National Park, BC, Canada by Maarten Venter

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This photo was taken last year during my trip to Canada. After a beautiful train journey from Vancouver to Banff we stayed over for a few days to explore more of the amazing landscapes surrounding this quaint little town high in the Rockies.
It was already April and therefore the end of winter. Snow was still visible on the mountain tops and melting snow was exposing some of the dramatic rock faces. It felt like Spring had arrived, but then another snow storm was heading our way and overnight 15cm of snow fell.

One morning we set out to Emerald Lake in the Yoho National Park with the hope of capturing the ice covered lake with the dramatic mountain peak as backdrop at sunrise. Some areas were still covered in a very thick layer of approximately one meter of snow that we had to walk through to get to a nice spot with a full view of the lake, and Mt Michael Peak and the Wapta Mountains as background. Unfortunately the view towards the main part of the lake was quite dull. The light was quite flat, the clouds had no texture and footprints spoiled the ice covered lake. With no sunlight, the Jack pines were just too black. We then walked back and set up on the very well known vehicular bridge crossing the lake and faced towards Cathedral Mountain. The clouds were still quite low, but allowed some sunlight through. The jack pines were sprinkled with fresh snow from the night before and even though the water appears to be black it was crystal clear exposing all the pebbles and fallen tree logs on the bottom of the lake.

This is a beautiful part of the world to visit and photograph. If you are lucky as we were, you will get to see a Grissly bear, a Black bear, a pair of Bald eagles, Otters and the big horn sheep native to North America. Certainly worth a trip no matter what season.


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