The clock has ticked over to 1am, I’m sitting on a plane soaring back to Australia after an unforgettable 10 days in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta Canada. Exhausted, my mind is spinning reflecting back on what would have to be one of my most memorable trips to date. Mountains, lakes, bears and endless hours of beautiful light, this is one for the memory books.
My first brief visit to Alberta was back in 2013 and over the past 3 years I’ve been thinking about the Rockies ever since. The plan for this trip? Re-visit some of the classics as well as partake in a couple of short hikes to get off the beaten track. Finally meeting my good friend Elizabeth Gadd as well as catching up with Andrew Pavlidis, Bec Kilpatrick and new friend Katie Goldie, the company was as good as the scenery and the call of the mountains resonated with us all.
The quaint and popular town of Banff became home base for the first few days and with the extended hours of daylight (almost 18 hours!) sipping coffee and midday naps in the warm sun became the only routine on this loosely structured trip. One thing that stood out to me the most upon arriving was the sheer size of the mountains here, something that I had almost forgotten and felt I failed to portray in my earlier work.
Jagged spires and monolithic masses of earth rise in all directions as you make your way through the Rockies, countless photographic opportunities present themselves and it quickly becomes evident that even a life time here wouldn’t be enough.
Within Banff alone there are dozens of incredible locations to shoot and then hitting the Trans-Canada highway toward Lake Louise opens things up tenfold. The Trail Head café in the Lake Louise Village became a second home for a couple of days as we hiked to Consolation Lakes, Lake Agnes and Eiffel Lake as well as stopping by the irresistible Lake Moraine and Lake Louise. It was during this time that the Northern Lights ramped up and we spent a sleepless night in awe of the mysterious green glow which silhouetted the numerous trees and peaks that call this beautiful place home.
Heading along the Icefields Parkway toward Jasper, the sheer size and expanse of the Rockies is revealed as open valleys give way to a sea of jagged mountains and endless evergreen trees. I lost count of the times that I had to suddenly stop the car for a scene that rendered me speechless, shaking my head in disbelief.
As I go through and review my images, it’s clear to me that I’ve yet again failed to do justice to the Rockies and the magic of these mountains. I guess that’s because places like this hold a special place in the hearts of those who have been exposed to such natural beauty. Beyond words or image, there is a presence here that can only be felt deep within, something I will forever seek to portray through my work. Thanks for stopping by and please feel free to check out the highlight video below. WP