Bigleaf Lupines (Lupinus polyphyllus) in the forest at Elgin Heritage Park in Surrey, British Columbia, Canada.
Bigleaf Lupine (Lupinus polyphyllus) at Elgin Heritage Park in Crescent Beach (Purchase)
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These are some of the numerous Bigleaf Lupines (Lupinus polyphyllus) growing in Elgin Heritage Park in Surrey, BC. On my way to photograph Red-winged Blackbirds in the marsh boardwalk, I stopped to photograph these lupines growing in some of the meadows along the way. I’ve mostly seen these lupines on the roadsides around Metro Vancouver and into the Fraser Valley, so it was nice to see them in relatively photogenic location.
“Barn” nesting space for Barn Owls at Elgin Heritage Park (Purchase)
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This is a small “barn” built in Elgin Heritage Park to encourage nesting Barn Owls. This seems like a good location for owls, I saw many small rodents (and not just baby rabbits) around the trails, especially under the boardwalk in the marsh.
For more of my wildflower photography please visit my Wildflower Gallery in my Image Library.
This spot along the Skyline Trail in Mount Rainier National Park features both Rainier and Edith Creek. It happens to be one of those “iconic” locations that is often photographed, and you can see why. Many photographers publicly deride iconic locations and those who photograph them but I don’t have a problem with shooting in these places (obviously). These locations are icons for a reason – they offer great scenery and are often easily accessible. After photographing an iconic location, however, I do think you should try thinking outside the box and find your own compositions in the area. There are always other angles and subjects to shoot that have not been photographed so many times before. Those who shoot an icon and then turn around and leave are missing out on a lot of the fun.
Wildflowers surround Edith Creek just above Myrtle Falls in Mount Rainier National Park, Washington State, USA
Mount Rainier Wildflowers and Edith Creek (Purchase)
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Last week I was photographing in Mount Rainier National Park in Washington State, USA. Having worked my way down the Golden Gate Trail I was running out of good light options for the wildflowers, Tatoosh Range and Mount Rainier itself. There was a big cloud in the sky near Rainier that was lit up bright purple but I wasn’t able to find a composition that worked with it. I jogged (causing some tourist curiosity) down to Edith Creek just above Myrtle Falls to see if I could get this interesting light reflected in the small waterfall there. The photograph above is the result. This 25 second exposure was one of only two that I made (second one was vertical) before the lights were shut off and it was over for the night. Sometimes it does pay to hurry!
Broadleaf Lupines (Lupinus latifolus), Western Anenome seedheads (Anenome occidentalis) and Common Paintbrush (Castilleja miniata) in Mount Rainier National Park in Washington State, USA.
Earlier I made a few posts showing various wildflower scenes from Mount Rainier National Park. Having edited most of my wildflower images from that trip at this point, I have to say that so far this image is my favourite. It doesn’t show a field filled with wildflowers, but more of an up close perspective. The Broadleaf Lupines (Lupinus latifolus) are certainly the highlight but I like the single Common Paintbrush (Castilleja miniata) flower and the Western Anenome seedheads (Anenome occidentalis) on the side. The yellow flowers which are most likely Broadleaf Arnica (Arnica latifolia, while not in focus – do help add some color to the scene overall.
Perhaps another reason I like this image is that it was rather difficult to actually make happen. It was windy at Tipsoo Lake that day, and the stems of these flowers aren’t rigid enough to resist swaying in the breeze. So I required a lot of patience to make this particular photograph, but I liked the composition a lot so I stuck with it!
Almost 2 months ago I went down to Mount Rainier National Park to view the wildflowers. Last week I posted some photos I made at Tipsoo Lake. Even on a weekday a National Park will be a busy place, so there were a lot of people hiking the trails and taking photos. For some compositions I waited for the people to be clear of my frame, but for others I tried to photograph what the people were doing on the trails. There was a lot of pointing and photographing this great display of wildflowers.
Visitors to Mount Rainier National Park’s Wildflower display at Tipsoo Lake
Backlit Western Anemone or Pasque Flowers (Anemone occidentalis) at Tipsoo Lake in Mount Rainier National Park, Washington State, USA
Western Anenome – Wildflowers at Rainier (Purchase)
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In mid August I went to Mount Rainier National Park to view what was promising to be an impressive display of wildflowers. As the weather at the Paradise area generally did not allow for viewing of the mountain itself, I headed to Tipsoo Lake to see the display there. I was not disappointed! While I have not seen a full display at Paradise, which is rumored to be a bit better, I was quite impressed with what I saw at Tipsoo Lake. The first photograph here is of some Pasque Flowers or Western Anemone (Anemone occidentalis) seed heads that were nicely backlit by the setting sun near Upper Tipsoo Lake. There are also a few Paintbrush (Castilleja miniata), Broadleaf Lupines (Lupinus latifolius), Alpine Aster (Aster alpigenus), and Broadleaf Arnica (Arnica latifolia) in that photo.
Here are a few more wildflower photographs made around Tipsoo and Upper Tipsoo Lakes:
Wildflower meadows around Tipsoo Lake -click to enlarge-
Subalpine Lupines (Lupinus arcticus ssp. subalpinus) on Kulshan Ridge with Mount Shuksan in the background – Mount Baker Wilderness, Washington State, USA.
Subalpine Lupines (Lupinus arcticus ssp. subalpinus) on Kulshan Ridge (Purchase)
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This is an older image from 2010 that I recently reprocessed. I have always liked this photo of Subalpine Lupines (Lupinus arcticus) flowering along Kulshan Ridge with Mount Shuksan in the background. The older version had that were just not that clear. There was a good breeze coming through there that evening and getting a still shot of the flowers was not easy. In fact, I had thought I had failed that mission, and published one on my blog and website that didn’t have the clearest Lupines. This is a different exposure, though a slightly different composition. It occasionally pays to keep some of my old files around!
This evening was my first outing with my first Graduated Neutral Density filter. I had never used one, but read a lot about them and a bit on how to use it. My photos from this evening were a big eye opener as to what was possible, and this beautiful location was certainly a big help. I also learned what they can do to trees that are on the horizon line but hopefully that is not too distracting in this photo.
The Artist Point area on Kulshan Ridge gets a ton of foot traffic as the parking lot is nearby. As a consequence, a lot of the vegetation gets trampled and destroyed. With the amount of snow that falls here each winter, there is a very very short growing season for these plants, so growing back after a repeated tourist trampling is not easy. Unfortunately I could not get my old tripod into a good position to photograph these so I had to convert myself into a pretzel to get low enough to look through the viewfinder. My old camera had no live view which would have helped immensely. One foot on a rock, a hand on another rock, and one hand on the camera… I only hit the mosses and other plants once with one of my hands. So I was successful in not damaging nature to get my nature photograph, but I did manage to pull a muscle in my leg which didn’t feel right for a week. I think the results make that completely worth it!
I arrived at Kalamalka Lake in May just before the bulk of the wildflowers had really started to flower but there were some Lupines (Lupinus arcticus) in bloom and the invasive species Toadflax (Linaria vulgaris) mixed in amongst the grasses.
First photo here is a lone Ponderosa Pine (Pinus ponderosa) that is unaffected by the Mountain Pine Beetle (Dendroctonus ponderosae)outbreak rampant in the interior of British Columbia.