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Sunrise photograph of Lake Minnewanka during winter with frozen bubbles

Ignition – 2021

In the winter of 2021, Bryce Mironuck and I visited the Canadian Rockies to practice some landscape photography. There was no location we frequented more than Lake Minnewanka. In the days before arriving, the weather was unseasonably warm. The lake had barely begun to freeze over, and during our first trip there, the ice was only an inch or two thick: unsafe to walk on. But after a couple of days, when temperatures dipped below -20° Celsius, the ice thickened up enough to be safe to walk on. The ice was in incredible shape this year. It was eerily transparent and, because there was little to no wind when it froze, it was as smooth as I have ever experienced.

One evening, we explored the different bubble patterns on the lake, looking for something that would work out nicely for the sunset shoot that day. I came across this beautiful set of freshly formed bubbles (and still forming. Watching ice bubbles form is an experience that cannot be adequately described; it needs to be experienced). I set up this composition and we waited for the sun to set. Unfortunately, that evening, the light never happened. Later, as we sat in our accommodations, we examined the cloud forecast for the next morning and it became evident that sunrise light would not be travelling too deep into the Rockies the next morning. Lake Minnewanka might be our best bet. So the following morning, I followed the GPS coordinated back to this same spot where I set up and experienced the most colourful sunrise of the 2021 trip.

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