The West

Takakkaw Falls | Yoho National Park

Iceline trail is a must take hike if you’re visiting the Canadian Rockies, as it takes you mere feet from a glacier, while providing one amazing view after another of the Yoho Valley and Takakkaw Falls.

The image below was taken with some nice puffy clouds in the sky, which are great for creating odd lighting patterns on the ground. I loved how the alpine meadow was in a soft, warm light, while the falls down the valley was in a harsher type light. The clouds were moving quickly, so I set up and waited for the sun to pop a little more within the meadow, and then snapped off a few frames.


Takakkaw Falls | Yoho National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


People In Nature | Yoho National Park

Yoho National Park is a beautiful part of the Canadian Rockies and has a several great locations to visit that are a quick drive from Banff National Park and the Lake Louise area. So, if you’re in this part of the world, I would suggest dedicating at least one day to explore Yoho Valley along Iceline Trail.

The image below was taken during the end of our hike when the shadows were getting a little longer. We came upon a person standing along the edge of one of the many alpine lakes that appear within the moraines during the summer months. I quickly composed the image to include the towering mountains in the distance and snapped off a few frames.


People In Nature | Yoho National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Half Dome Under Full Moon

I’m a big fan of photographing landscape images at night, as it gives a scene a completely different look then the day. Especially if you can combine it with a full moon, as it will give you enough light to properly expose the scene, while giving you a long enough exposure to capture the star filled sky.

What some people don’t realize is that if you photograph by the moons light, you don’t need to jack up your ISO or have super long exposures. For example, the image below of Half Dome and Royal Arches, is captured with ISO 800 at f/4 with a 30-second exposure.


Half Dome Under Full Moon | © Jay Moore Photography

So, the next time you have a clear evening on a full moon, wait for it to get higher in the sky, grab your camera and tripod and head out to your favorite landscape spot to capture a few images.

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


People In Nature

As documented on my blog before, the Moraine Lake area was mine and my wife’s most enjoyable spot within Banff National Park. The scenery was outstanding pretty much which ever direction you looked.

The trip up to Eiffel Lake, which shares part of its trail with Larch Valley Trail, splits off about a 1.5 miles into your journey and begins a beautiful and relaxing hike along the edge of the Valley of the Ten Peaks. The trail is less crowded than the hike up to Sentinel Pass and is worth the effort if you’re in the area for multiple days.


People In Nature | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Looking Ahead To 2013

It’s always fun to look ahead to the year that’s up and coming. To plan, dream and begin preparing for what’s next in your life. But, you can’t forget to look to the past to draw on the experiences that have already come upon you in your lifetime. And I’m grateful for many things over this past year, including being lucky for the health and safety of the ones that I love.

Here’s to a fantastic 2013 and may the year bring you much happiness and joy …


Looking Ahead To 2013 | © Jay Moore Photography

And if you’re curious, the image above was taken on the trail up to Iceberg Lake in Glacier National Park with my wife and some of our closest friends in the world.


Lake Louise Morning Light

Lake Louise is a wonderful place to visit most anytime of the day, but is especially beautiful during the sunrise. It’s the best time to soak up the lake and surrounding Canadian Rockies because during the morning hours it showcases some amazing light while you’re only sharing the scene with a handful of other folks, versus hundreds of people later in the morning. That is why I highly recommend setting you alarm clock early, grab a cup of coffee and get to this location a few minutes prior to sunrise … You’ll not be disappointed.

When I arrived on this particular morning, there was a red canoe in the lake paddling around. It was the only one on the lake and I thought it would work perfectly for some interest in the foreground. So, I found a spot along the edge of the lake quickly composed the scene to showcase the glacier and its reflection in the lake, made sure to include the rising moon and then waited for the canoe to move into the position I wanted, then I snapped off a few frames.


Lake Louise Morning Light | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Antelope Slot Canyons

The antelope slot canyons is a beautiful place to visit in the Southwest, as your time wandering the small natural pathway through the sandstone is a very calming and spiritual experience. The color in this particular scene is exactly what you’ll see if you visit this special location, as when the sun is high in the sky on a clear day, its rays penetrate through the slots creating beautiful shades of yellows, oranges, reds and purples.

Depending on where you are within the slots will determine how much color from each shade is showcased, such as the image below where I’m somewhat close to the top of the canyons, giving the bright, warm yellows an opportunity to shine.


Antelope Slot Canyons #1663 | © Jay Moore Photography

And for those who’ve never visited the slots, the image below is roughly 20-30 feet from the ground to the top, with the path being just out of frame on the bottom. The image is taken on a full-frame camera at 27mm. I also shot it at f/16 at 1.0 secs, to give it maximum depth of field. As with most all of my photo experiences, my camera was mounted to the top of my really right stuff head and sturdy Gitzo legs.

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.

Continue to check back to see additional highlight images from my slot canyon series …


Athabasca Glacier

The glaciers along the Icefield Parkways are an amazing site to see, as one mountain of glacier wall after another come in to view with every turn. One of the most condensed area of these glaciers are within the Columbia Icefields, which contains eight major glaciers, including Athabasca Glacier, shown below.

The glacier, one of the most grand of the set and the easiest to view (and walk on, as you can see several buses of tourist exploring the glacier within the image below) is another example of how global warming is changing the landscape of this world. Athabasca Glacier currently recedes at about 7-10 feet a year and has shrunk by almost one entire mile over the past 125 years, losing roughly half of its volume within that time. The Icefield Interpretive Centre, which sits right across the street includes many images taken from decades earlier, helping you see the major shifts that have occurred throughout the years.


Athabasca Glacier | Icefields Parkway | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


People In Nature | Yoho National Park

Iceline trail, which is located just inside Yoho National Park and a fairly easy ride from the Lake Louise area, is a must hike if you’re visiting this part of the world. The trail quickly gets within the alpine, giving you sweeping views of the Yoho Valley floor, along with several glaciers that occupy the area.

While resting and having some protein during the half-way point of our hike that day, my wife and I had front row seats of a couple who decided that the moraine in front of the prospect would have a better view of the Yoho valley and Daly Glacier. As they began their ascent up the moraine, I composed the scene and snapped off several frames, with the below image being one of my favorites.


People In Nature | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Wildflowers | Glacier National Park

One of the most spectacular parts of visiting Glacier National Park is the site of all the wild flowers that live within the alpines. As the snow melts and gives way to these colorful beauties, they provide a colorful explosion for your eyes, as you scan the small trail traversing the high altitude hikes. They are not only great for creating interesting foregrounds in large landscape images, but I had an wonderful time photographing them within their own environment on the ground. Below is an image of some nice Castilleja (Indian Paintbrush) within a sea of wildflowers.

I adjusted my settings within my camera (Canon) so I could easily move my cameras dial to C1 to capture the wildflowers without needing to adjust my landscape settings, which normally stayed around f/13 (give or take a few stops). I set C1 to f2.8, so when I came across a scene that I wanted to capture, I turned the dial, composed the scene and fired away. It was a great way to capture these beautiful pieces of nature without having to make major adjustments to my settings along the trail. When I was completed with photographing the scene, I turned the dial back to ‘M’ and was ready to capture my next large landscape image.


Wild Flowers | Glacier National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Wild Goose Island

Wild Goose Island is a small spec of land that sits in the middle of St. Mary Lake, creating a beautiful scene within Glacier National Park that artist flock to on a daily basis. It’s not only a great location because of its beauty, but because it’s easily accessible by car and provides interesting scenes from sunrise to sunset.

The scene below was somewhat backlit which was a challenge for a full sweeping landscape image, but was great for creating sparkles of light on the lakes rough waters. So, I put on my 70-200mm lens and cranked it to 200mm, and then focused upon the small island. I included Fusillade Mountain in the background, creating some perspective of distance and space.


Wild Goose Island | Glacier National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Antelope Slot Canyon

I bring you the first installment of my series from Antelope Slot Canyon. #1733 is one of my favorite images that I captured during my extended time within the canyon. Does this scene seem familiar? Just take a quick look at my blog header as it’s a slice of this particular image.

This spot is a beautiful place within the Southwest, located just outside of Page, AZ, and is a must stop if you’re visiting that part of the world. The canyons have amazing shapes and forms, with a strong spiritual presence that seems to be filled within the open space between the narrow rock walls. And the true magic begins when the sun is high overhead as the light creates different shades of yellows, oranges, reds and purples that seems to glow around you.

Antelope Slot Canyons #1733 | © Jay Moore Photography

Hiking / Photography Insight: If visiting the slot canyons, there are two different sections, upper and lower. We spent our time in lower because there are less regulations on how long you can spend walking the canyons, as upper is much more popular and you must stay within your group. The lower provides ample scenes for great images, however you will not get the iconic sun rays that come down onto the canyon floor, as those mostly happen in the upper canyon and only during certain months (late spring, summer and early fall). I would suggest using a tripod to help capture greater depth, but make sure you have flexibility with your tripod legs as there are very few typical set-ups within the canyon.

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Lake Louise | Sunrise

Lake Louise is a beautiful place to visit within Banff National Park. It’s a popular destination for tourists around the world and after you get a chance to see the area with your own eyes, you quickly understand why it’s become so crowded with summer vacationers.

One great way to see the lake is during the morning sunrise, as the crowds of tourists are diminished dramatically, but more importantly the mountains and glaciers face east, which puts a soft, warm light upon the scene. And on certain mornings, such as in the image below, the alpine wind hasn’t begun to blow, leaving the lake crystal clear for an amazing reflection of the surrounding mountains and glaciers.


Lake Louise | Sunrise | Banff National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Avalanche Gorge | Glacier National Park

The Avalanche Lake Trail is a beautiful hike that includes an amazing view of the lake at the half-way point of your trip. However, the beginning and end of the trail (since it’s an out and back trail) takes you along Avalanche Gorge, where Avalanche Creek rushes through a narrow slit of hard rock, creating interesting shapes and forms.

My sturdy tripod was a fixture on all of our hikes during our visit to Glacier National Park and was a vital piece of equipment in capturing the fast moving water of Avalanche Gorge, since I wanted to blur the water with longer exposures. The image below was captured with a 2.5 second exposure at ISO 100 and f22, creating great depth of field while giving the water a flowing sensation throughout the scene.


Avalanche Gorge | Glacier National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Hiking Insight: This is a very popular trail and is considered a somewhat easier hike within GNP, as it’s roughly 4 miles round trip with an elevation gain of about 600 feet. This is a great afternoon hike, as the main cliffs that surround the lake faces west, so starting the hike at or after lunch time is recommended. This is also a great hike to combine with another smaller hike that can be taken in the morning, such as Hidden Lake near Logan Pass.

Research Insight: We used both the Vicky Spring’s book (Glacier National Park and Waterton Lakes National Park: A Complete Recreation Guide) and our iphone App (HIKE – Glacier National Park) throughout our time in Glacier National Park and I highly suggest purchasing them both before your visit.

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Glacier Water | Moraine Lake

Glacier lakes are a beautiful sight to see. The color of the water can be a variety of different shades, as it depends on the amount of glacier sediment within the lake in combination with how that sediment settles within the water. The calmer the water, the more those particles can settle and better reflect the light and sky, creating interesting shades of blue and green.

Moraine Lake is made from almost a perfect scenario. It has a high amount of glacier sediment, as it’s located within a bowl of glaciers. And it’s also somewhat protected at where the rushing glacier sediment water enters the lake, which helps keep the water calm. These two elements in combination helps give Moraine Lake an amazing shade of turquoise water, especially when it’s viewed on a bright, clear sunny day, such as in the image below.

And the piece of wood within the scene is floating on top of the calm water, creating an almost abstract image.


Glacier Water | Moraine Lake | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


People In Nature | Yoho National Park

One of my favorite ‘People In Nature’ image that I captured on my trip to the Rockies is when my wife and I were hiking the Iceline trail in Yoho National Park in Canada. A must hike if you’re visiting the area, you spend most of your time mere feet beside Emerald Glacier and the west face of the towering Vice President mountain, with stunning views down across Yoho valley.

The image below is from one of the prospects along the trail, which overlooks the valley below and Daly Glacier. I knew right away that the scene was perfect for a people in nature image, so I scrabbled up the moraines to give myself a better vantage point of the prospect and the glacier in the distance. My wife then carefully hiked up the narrow path as I captured a scene that I think highlights a sense of strength, persistence and accomplishment …


People In Nature | Yoho National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Continue to check back for other scenes that highlight people in nature …

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Granite Park Chalet | Glacier National Park

The Granite Park Chalet, which is located along the Highline Trail in Glacier National Park, is a wonderful structure perched high up in the Rocky Mountains. It’s an active chalet which gives you an opportunity to wake to morning sunrises at almost 6,500 feet on the edge of the world. It’s only open for a few months every year, as the snow is still many feet high when they start clearing it in June. And it’s something you have to plan for in advance, as the chalet’s rooms book up every year in only a few hours.

We didn’t stay in the chalet on our recent visit, but after day dreaming of watching a sunrise and sunset in such a beautiful place, I can see staying overnight for a few nights at this location on our next trip to this part of the world.


Granite Park Chalet | Glacier National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Photography / Hiking Insight: We started on the Highline trail at 9 am, but I would suggest to try and leave slightly before (8 am in August) and plan on doing the out and back hike from Logan Pass to the Granite Park Chalet. It’s a little longer than option two (a one-way trip to ‘The Loop’, however, this option concludes with four miles straight down a mountain with very limited views). Although heading back to Logan Pass adds some miles, it’s a gradual slope and easier on your body with better views for your eyes and camera.

Research Insight: We wore out both Vicky Spring’s book (Glacier National Park and Waterton Lakes National Park) and our iphone App (HIKE – Glacier National Park).

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Glacier Creek

The sediment within glacier water is one of the main reason for its unique colors, which can range from turquoise to white with many shades in between. The more the water is turned up, such as in the image below of a rushing creek, it takes on a look that’s more similar to flowing non-fat milk than water.

During our hike through Paradise Valley within Banff National Park there was lots of rushing water, including several smaller creeks that were flowing very fast. We stopped at one that turned by the path and then under a bridge, which gave us a great vantage point to see up the creek. Since it was later in the day and the sun was behind a mountain, the light was diffused and created even lighting throughout the scene.


Glacier Creek | Banff National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Columbia Icefield and Wildflowers

The Icefields Parkway is something that you must explore for at least one day while visiting Banff and/or Jasper National Park in Canada. The drive is absolutely spectacular and if you make it a long day trip, you can take in a couple of beautiful hikes to break up your driving. One hike that must be taken is Wilcox Pass, as it gives you sweeping views of the Columbia Icefields.

A big storm was rolling in and my wife and I were hiking quickly to try and stay ahead of the bad weather. And even though the storm eventually cut our hike and photography short, the images that led up to it was worth it, including the image below with wildflowers in the foreground and the Columbia Icefields looming in the distance. The icefield feeds eight major glaciers, including the Athabasca Glacier (middle) and Dome Glacier (right), seen in the image below.


Columbia Icefield | Icefields Parkway | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Building Storm

Building storms can be fun to watch and experience when in a mountainous region. The large peaks and low valleys can create major shifts of cloud formations in matter of minutes when the storm is rolling in.

On this particular hike with my wife and good friends, the thick clouds were swirling around the mountain peak, hiding it from view and then making it reappear for moments at a time. The sun was also popping through those clouds, splashing light throughout parts of the scene. It was perfect for a black and white conversion to help showcase the drama that was taking place. So, I edited the image in Nik’s Silver Efex Pro 2 to give the final scene more depth and contrast by deepening the richness of the blacks and giving a crispness to the whites.


Building Storm | Rockies | Glacier National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Walk In Paradise | People In Nature

The hike up to Eiffel Lake goes right up the Valley of the Ten Peaks and is a wonderful second hike within the area. It’s second only to the day hike up to Sentinel Pass and actually shares the beginning of the trail before spurring off about 1.5 miles up the switchbacks. As soon as you break through into the alpine section the trail provides one amazing view after another of the surrounding peaks. The 11,000 feet-plus mountains hover over your every step, reminding you that you’re in a place like no other.

I wanted to capture natures size and power of the area and decided including a person would help with the perspective. I used a longer zoom lens to compress the scene of the mountainous background to the foreground of my wife on the Eiffel Lake trail. Make sure to click on the image to get a larger version of the scene.


Walk In Paradise | People In Nature | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.

I also think that this image could be labeled as ‘Challenge’ if you or a business are looking for such imagery for a website or collateral. Please contact me if you’re interested.


Lake Louise

Lake Louise is a popular destination within the Canadian Rockies. And after you’ve had a chance to visit this amazing part of the world, you can see why. It’s a little more commercialized than the other areas around Banff National Park, but as soon as you get away from the crowds of the famous Fairmount Chateau (seen in the image below) and up on the trails, the crowds thin out and the scenes improve.

We took the Plain of the Six Glaciers hike later in the day, since the crowds would be smaller and the lighting is in a better position to highlight Lake Louis and the surrounding mountain tops. When we stopped at the teahouse, which is a quint little two story building and located at 6,857 feet, we were one of the only people sipping our tea and hot chocolate and had the best table in the place which included amazing views of Victoria and Lefroy Glacier’s. We continued past the teahouse to the prospect, which is just a little further up the trail and is well worth the extra effort as it gives you sweeping views of the valley below, along with close-ups of the multiple glaciers that sit atop the monstrous peaks. Below is an image down the valley onto Lake Louise. You can even see the teahouse in the bottom left hand corner, just follow the small trail to the square looking structure in the trees …


Lake Louise | Banff National Park | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Moraine Lake Sunset

If you ever get a chance to visit Banff National Park in Canada, then you must make a trip to Moraine Lake. I would even suggest multiple visits at different times of the day to see the lake and surrounding peaks within different light.

This location quickly became my wife and my favorite area within Banff, as we enjoyed the scenery and the hikes around this amazing part of the world. We made the trek to this gem of a spot several times during our stay in the Canadian Rockies and one of the most dramatic times of the day is during the early evening, starting about two hours prior to sunset. The suns light enters from an opening of the peaks from the West, creating a dramatic directional light on the Valley of the Ten Peaks. It’s one of those areas that you can sit back, relax and just enjoy natures show. That’s what my wife and I did as we grabbed some cheese and crackers, and a bottle of red and pulled up a rock on the ‘rockpile’ and watched the light change from minute to minute.


Moraine Lake Sunset | © Jay Moore Photography

If you’re interested in how the location looks during the morning sunrise … CHECK OUT MY PREVIOUS POST

Photography / Hiking Insight: As said above, Moraine Lake is beautiful anytime of day to visit, but sunrise and sunset bring a special light to this magical place, giving it even more drama than usual. I enjoyed the morning light a little more than evening (August) since it touched on many of the Ten Peaks (was at location about 15 minutes before the scheduled sunrise). However, the evening light (as seen above) is very dramatic (at location about two hours before scheduled sunset for best angled light), but since the Canadian Rockies generate its own clouds throughout the day, we only had a few small windows to photograph the scene before the clouds covered the dramatic light.

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.


Lake O’Hara Region | Alpine Circuit

The Lake O’Hara region is a special area of the world and is a must see location if you visit the Canadian Rockies. It does take some planning as its a protected area with only 42 day hikers per day getting permits, which must be obtained by calling ahead 3-months to the day that you plan on visiting the area. The call can take up to several hours and hundreds of redials, but the time on the phone is fully worth it, as 3-months later you’ll be hiking one of the most inspirational trails that you’ll ever set foot on.

The below image is from along the Huber Ledges Alpine section of the Alpine Circuit, where you can see the chain of glacier lakes from Lake Oesa on the left, down to Lake O’Hara on the right, with Lefroy Lake, Victoria Lake and Yukness Lake in between. The day of our hike had storm clouds rolling into the area and threatened to potential ruin our hiking trip, but we pushed on and the clouds provided for some dramatic scenes and the rain and thunder held off until that night when we were off the mountain side.


Lake O’Hara Region | © Jay Moore Photography

Print Purchase: If you’re interested in purchasing a photographic print, the image above (and all images posted on my blog) are available in all sizes. Please email be directly through the ‘contact Jay’ link located at the top of the page.