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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Pro Tips For Summer Hot Spots

Check out these top shooting locations from some of the best Outdoor Photographer contributors

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Jon Cornforth
Jasper National Park, Canada
Located along the border of Alberta and British Columbia, Jasper National Park is the largest of the national parks in the Canadian Rockies. The park includes rivers, lakes, waterfalls, mountains and glaciers, with the largest and most dramatic being the Columbia Icefields. The park's scenic attractions also include Pyramid Lake, Maligne Lake, Mount Edith Cavell and my personal favorite, the Tonquin Valley.

The easiest way to visit Jasper is either to drive four hours west from Edmonton or north from Banff National Park along the Icefields Parkway. The Tonquin Valley isn't a roadside attraction, so be prepared to either backpack 20 kilometers to camp overnight or join a horseback trip where you can stay at the remote lodge perched on the edge of spellbinding Amethyst Lake. On a calm morning, the rugged summits of the Ramparts reflect on the surface of the lake, which will allow you to photograph one of the most amazing scenes anywhere in North America.

Joseph Rossbach
Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado
One of the most beautiful parks in the American West, Rocky Mountain National Park has everything from soaring scenic vistas, deep canyons and abundant wildlife to hundreds of lakes and thousands of miles of streams and waterfalls. Sitting in the north-central region of Colorado, the park has a variety of terrain and ecosystems, ranging from wooded forests to mountain tundra. With many trailheads, access to the backcountry and numerous backcountry campsites allow for off-the-beaten-path exploration and unique locations.

Summer in Rocky Mountain National Park brings pleasant weather, with temps reaching the high '70s to low '80s on most days, and frequent afternoon thunderstorms add a chance to capture unique, dramatic clouds and light across the mountain landscape.

At sunset, explore the alpine world of Trail Ridge for 360ยบ panoramas of the Mummy Range and Never Summer Mountains. The small alpine wildflowers in this harsh environment in the summer and lichen-covered rocks and glacial erratics mixed into the landscape make for great foreground landscape photography. Afternoon thunderstorms often bring dramatic clouds to the table, and there's no better place to capture this play of light, weather and land than up high on Trail Ridge. Use caution, as weather can change abruptly, and lack of cover makes thunderstorms a serious threat. It's also common for temperatures to routinely dip below freezing up high, even during the height of summer, and snowstorms are possible at any time of the year.


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