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Reflections on Emerson Lake

Tall shoreline spruce are reflected in the glassy calm surface of Emerson Lake in northwestern Alberta

Spruce reflections in Emerson Lake

I made this photograph last summer at Emerson Lakes, easily one of the most beautiful campgrounds I’ve stayed at in Alberta. The weekend I was there was perfect for camping, yet we still had the place nearly to ourselves. There are several lakes, all surrounded by steep ridges (unusual for boreal Alberta) with a hiking trail weaving around them. Sundance Provincial Park is nearby with more hiking (to hoodoos!), and even a multi-day backpacking route. I can’t recommend this spot enough if you like quiet, out-of-the-way camping spots.

The detail I like best about this photo is the line angling up and left from just above the shoreline on the right. The line is initially, and most strongly, created by the fallen spruce trunk but in the centre of the frame, the fallen tree becomes hidden but the visual line continues along first one branch and then, more weakly still, another branch. I find that this angled line and its reflection, create a subtle point of interest for the eye to follow through the otherwise very vertical composition.

A folio print of this image is for sale for whatever price you think is fair. Enter amount: $

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