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Landscape photography of a sun halo in the Canadian Rockies during winter

Ethereal – 2021

Two years ago, my wife and I went on a backcountry camping trip to Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park and, during the drive to the parking lot, we passed this epic mountain range. I remember commenting to her then just how exceptional this mountain range and valley was. Fast forward two years to a few months ago, and that experience was missing from my memory.

As we scouted for the trip, my friend sent me a photo of this valley and my jaw dropped. I couldn’t believe that a spot like that even existed, let alone one so accessible. It was immediately added to our “must-shoot” list; we needed to see it.

It wasn’t until our arrival that my memory of the dusty road to the Mount Assiniboine trailhead flooded back. I couldn’t believe I had forgotten one of the most photogenic places in the Canadian Rockies. With excitement, we scouted a couple of places for a future mid-morning or sunset shoot.

As the week wore on, though, conditions never led our vehicle back to this range. It wasn’t until the last morning that I made it back here to photograph this scene. Weather models indicated that we could finally expect to see our first low clouds of the trip that morning, so I made a plan to stop here mid-morning after a sunrise shoot at another location.

As I finished my sunrise shoot, light snow began to fall, and there was some beautiful atmosphere in the air. I got back to the vehicle and headed for this spot. As I drove, I eventually pulled ahead of the light flurries; my mirrors revealing this breathtaking sun halo behind me. Luckily I was close to this spot and as I arrived, this beautiful scene unfolded in front of me.

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