Bitter Cold Assignment Winner Perri Schelat

Blue Chill by Perri Schelat

“Blue Chill” by Perri Schelat

Photographer: Perri Schelat

In the winter, Yellowstone is an ethereal and otherworldly wonderland with unlimited photography opportunities. I was after specific winter scenes, and at the top of my list were ghost trees. I knew I would need frigid temperatures, so I chose a cold winter month with less snowfall, clearer skies and colder temperatures. I wanted steam or fog as well, so I would need to head towards the geysers and thermal pools.

On a clear -10 degree morning last February, I headed straight to the geyser basins and thermal areas. I found these evergreens at Norris Geyser Basin near a thermal pool. Steam from the pool drifted into the trees and covered them in frosty ice.  

No special post-processing beyond lifting shadows, dodging, burning and basic RAW file conversion using Lightroom was done.

Nikon D3, AF-S Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8 lens, Singh-Ray Neutral polarizer, Nikon MC30 cable release, Gitzo GT 3542LS tripod, Kirk BH1 ballhead.