People sure make different choices when it comes to vacations. Budget and family circumstances influence the nature and distance of any travel. Interests lead to holidays focused on shopping, museums, bright lights, awesome food, beaches, history, all-inclusive, cruising, outdoor adventure, photography or some other pursuit.
Our family vacations tend to one extreme or the other; we go big or stay home. For this spring vacation, we opted to unwind with a nature break in Canmore. Icy trail conditions weren’t conducive to relaxing walks, but we pulled on our Kahtoola NANOspikes and headed out everyday regardless of the weather.
One outcome of our choice to decompress? A single sunrise photowalk…
It was cloudy or overcast almost every day. While clouds generally add interest to landscape photographs, it’s helpful to think a little differently if the sky is grey and flat.
One option is to take advantage of nature’s softbox by choosing subjects that photograph better without the distraction of the highlights and shadows that result from sunny skies. The upper waterfalls on Three Sisters Creek is located in a deep, narrow valley where light conditions are usually difficult, so that was our destination on one grey day.
Other days, we couldn’t resist the lure of the big landscape, so had to think about minimizing the amount of sky, emphasizing the foreground and/or including a pop of colour in our compositions.
Intimate naturescapes also work well on overcast days.
When I spotted an old cable spool a few meters off the trail one morning, I opted to create a mini photo essay that included some close-ups.
Another themed set of photos accumulated over several days.
Mother Nature came through with a couple of blue sky days, including one morning after overnight sleet and snow left everything dusted in fresh white – from mountain tops to valley bottom.
Most evenings we succumbed to the temptation of a soak in the hot tub followed by TV time. But I headed out one evening for the express purpose of using the Live Composite exposure option on my Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II. It’s an Olympus-patented variation on long exposure photography that takes a base exposure and then adds new light information to the image over time. Thanks to the Olympus Image Share app, I could use my phone to trigger the exposure, monitor how the light trails were developing and then end the exposure when I was satisfied. I also took single exposures from the same location.
All-in-all, we enjoyed observing the back and forth between winter and spring that happens at this time of year in this part of the world. And we’re looking forward our next chance to get out and about in Canmore, when we’ll be on the look out for signs of that spring has arrived.
What’s your ideal spring vacation? Leave a comment to let us know.