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Spring 2012 Photo Tour In the Canadian Rockies

March 10, 2012
Spring Prairie Crocus, Rocky Mountains

Spring Prairie Crocus, Rocky Mountains

The Spring photo tour was a success once again in 2012! We had a group of 4 photographers, great folks who were game to try on anything during our 3-½ intense days of spring photography. Spring arrived more on time this year, so we had opportunities with blooming Calypso Orchids and Prairie Crocuses. We also had some close wildlife encounters including Big-horn Sheep, Golden-mantled Ground Squirrel and Hoary Marmot; bears were definitely around but managed to dodge our lenses during the tour days. Our full day visit to the Brazeau Collieries abandoned mine site served up many interesting industrial subjects, and the opportunity for most of the group to exercise their composition skills with material that was perhaps less familiar. 🙂 Weather wise, we had very good conditions — a lot of wind on one day in particular, but otherwise warm & bright light, not too much cloud, and no rain to speak of.

Some of my photos from the tour will be coming along in between my intense travel & photo schedule over the next 2 months; look for posts tagged Spring 2012 Photo Tour. Here are a few favorites submitted by tour participants:

If you’d like to get in on this event next year, we’ve just announced dates for the Spring 2013 tour; see the events page here on the blog for more information.


Event: Spring 2012 Photo Tour
Leaders: Royce Howland and Alan Ernst
Group size: 6 – 7 participants maximum, intermediate to advanced photography experience; spaces are available
Dates: May 11 – 15, 2012
Highlights: 3 ½ days / 4 nights at Aurum Lodge in David Thompson Country
Travel on location: Car-pooling with the group
Fee: $1279 CDN including all tour fees, accommodations & meals; not including travel to the lodge
Information: See the general tour information page here on the blog
Registration: Booking information at Aurum Lodge
Contact: Royce Howland (royce at vividaspect dot com) or Alan Ernst (info at aurumlodge dot com)

Winter isn’t over yet, but make your plans to spring into a new season of photography! This May, I will be leading a small group photo tour in the Rocky Mountains. The tour is based at the award-winning Aurum Lodge. Centrally placed in David Thompson Country with access to the world-class Canadian Rockies, the lodge provides an ideal blend of location, lodgings and meal arrangements designed for the focused photographer. The combination of a small group size and proven instructors (with co-leader Alan Ernst and myself) provides a lot of personal focus for each participant. Our goal is to make sure each member of the group gets the maximum result from this experience.

Based out of the lodge for the entire tour, we will cover locations along the David Thompson Highway. This route runs along Abraham Lake, cutting through the front ranges of the Canadian Rockies. We’ll also work towards the Icefields Parkway as conditions warrant, and work some locations around Saskatchewan River Crossing.

Nobody At the Wheel, Nordegg

Nobody At the Wheel, Nordegg

As a special event during this year’s tour, we have negotiated a day of access to the fascinating historical Brazeau Collieries mine site in the nearby town of Nordegg. The abandoned industrial location is operated by the Nordegg Historical Society, and offers not only a fascinating glimpse into the past of a major industry that opened up the Canadian west, but also provides an incredible wealth of photographic opportunities. For just a small sample of the kinds of photographs possible at Brazeau Collieries, see my short Industrial gallery. This special all-day access is not available to visitors who take the regular 1-hour mine site tour. It will be a rare treat for participants — don’t miss it!

Our tour is a field-oriented event aimed at providing an array of photography opportunities to participants at an intermediate to advanced level. This is not an introductory photography workshop and there is no significant classroom instruction component; you need to come properly equipped for several days of intensive photography, and know how to use all the basic features of your equipment. However we will provide participant-focused, hands-on instruction whenever needed. This will include site orientations as we hit each new or different type of location, and in-field instruction on various topics such as cameras & lenses, photography technique and composition. Based on group interest, we’ll optionally incorporate an indoor portfolio review session where we examine some images made by everyone, to provide focused improvement opportunities.

This promises to be a fun event! Spring in the Rockies is a season of new life, and opportunities with wildlife, wildflowers and closeup subjects will be added to those of the abundant scenery: mountains, lakes, plains and forests. This year, we’ll also have the extra possibilities at an incredible industrial location. The days will be filled with an intense dedication to the wealth of photographic opportunities, and we’re also beating the summer heat and crowds. If your travel schedule still has a spring opening in it, join us this May!

For more information about my tours, see the tour information page here on the Vivid Aspect blog. You can also contact me, or Alan Ernst at Aurum Lodge.

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