Tag Archives: Ice

Iceland Journal – “The End” – Svínafelsjökull – South Iceland

“The End” - Svínafelsjökull - South Iceland

“It’s not the endings that will haunt you
But the space where they should lie,
The things that simply faded
Without one final wave goodbye.” 
― Erin Hanson

The long journey comes to an end, silently and slowly, in water.

Nothing is quick for a glacier, including its ending. The ice slowly flows down the mountains, slowly melting, cracking, and disintegrating. The last vestiges float about in a muddy pond, eventually fading not the water, at the feet of their majestic source..

In the image, you can clearly see the progression down the mountain, including the widening fissures at the face of the glacier. I made the photo from the edge of the pool, looking back up the glacier and waiting for the clouds to clear so that I could see the high peak of Hrútsfallstindar towering  behind the glacier at 1,570 meters.

My son and I walked the edge of the pond, amazed at this natural spectacle and watching all shapes and sizes if ice floating around in front of us, or stuck to the muddy bottom and gradually melting away. What really surprised me was the variation, not just of shape and size but the colours and textures of the icebergs. Some were simply dull gray masses, others were made up of layers in every vibrant shade of blue imaginable, and some were absolutely crystal clear.

Behind us was a high mound of rock and gravel, the terminal moraine, made during the last advance of the glacier, as it pushed and piled the rock into a hill in front of it, creating a dam that is responsible for the glacial pool.

It was such a lovely place that we spent over an hour exploring the shoreline and photographing the icebergs and surroundings. It was an experience that I had not expected to ever have and one I will not soon forget.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 75 mm
1/320 sec, f/10.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

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Iceland Journal – “Face to Face with the Glacier” – Svínafelsjökull, South Iceland

“Face to Face with the Glacier” - Svínafelsjökull, South I

“Ice, deep, blue and tortured ice;
The vault of time, and memory, long past.”
– Ed Lehming

Words can barely describe the feeling of standing side by side with a glacier. Ice, formed tens of thousand of years ago. Ice, that has travelled for kilometers from high mountain peaks to slowly melt into oblivion, in a muddy glacial pool.

The photo hardly does it justice; layers of ice and dust, reminders of Iceland’s recent and distant volcanic past, laid out before me to ponder, close enough to touch. There are too many shades of blue to name, and light plays from and through the ancient mass before me.

Glaciers cover almost ten percent of Iceland’s surface, all melting at an accelerated pace in recent years. And now, I stand and witness their slow decay in the sound of dripping water and splashes far below the lead face.

I’m so glad I made this journey, at this time. I fear much of this wonder will soon be gone; though it’s hard to imagine that this much ice will someday by be nothing more than a muddy brown pond and a memory of what once was.

This, is Svínafelsjökull, close up and personal, this is Iceland’s past and future, a visual history of the land of Fire and Ice.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 200mm
1/160 sec, f/6.3, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“Up and Around”

“Up and Around”

“And this is how the forest changes, one step, one day, one moment at a time. ” 
― Ed Lehming

The time of change is at my doorstep. Though flurries still fill the air from time to time, the inevitable change is palpable. Paths once completely ice covered are now more passable. Mud and leaves fill the spaces between, and the ice slowly recedes.

Even the evergreens are a bit brighter, as the sun brings freshness their winter faded needles. Birdsong returns to fill the air.

I love this time of year, watching the gradual shift from ice to green. It reminds me that life is a cycle; that there are times of growth and times of rest. The toughest part is just before the change, a time when my world is ice covered and dull; uninspiring. Yet, with patience and the knowledge that it’s temporary, I venture out for moments like this, moments where the change is visible and I look forward to the days ahead.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 70mm
1/4 sec, f/10.0 ISO 250

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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or my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

 

“Icy Trails”

“Icy Trails”

“There is always danger for those who are afraid.” 
― George Bernard Shaw

I could not resist the quote. I am told over and over, “Be careful on the trails, they are icy.” I get it from family and other who hike these trails in warmer days. I have never considered the trails dangerous, it’s just a matter of adjusting to the conditions. I avoid the slickest, uneven sections, particularly those on steep slopes. Even with cleats on, I am careful not to get over-confident. But, I am experienced on these trials and rely on common sense and acquired skills to see me safely through.

The amount of ice on the trails this year is pretty significant. The conditions have been just right to render the heavily trodden trails into ice rinks. Yet, I have a need to be out here, enjoying the natural beauty that surrounds me and documenting some part of that. Friends seem surprised that I am out in these conditions, yet most times I run into other hikers, so I am not alone in this venture. Except I am carrying a bunch of camera gear, which would not do well in a fall.

So, here you have it, a small moment on the icy trails, the forest gradually emerging from its winter rest, as life and colour begin to show themselves once more.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 70mm
1/4 sec, f/20.0 ISO 250

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“December Freeze Up”

“December Freeze Up”

“December’s wintery breath is already clouding the pond, frosting the pane, obscuring summer’s memory…” 
― John Geddes

Seriously, I could stop my post here with this all too appropriate quote. As I stood, gazing across the cloudy pond surface, northwest winds whipping past my face, summer was truly a distant memory. Yet, the beauty remains (and the bugs are gone).

I put just a slight movement into this image, just enough to add a misty feel, highlighting the brightness of the distant birch trees, which dominate the far shore.

As I stood on that shore, I wondered how many people just stroll past, walking their dogs or simply in their own worlds, and miss this lovely scene? I’ve made images from the same point and had local friends ask me where the picture was taken.

In this instance, the light and clouds play an integral part in the overall composition, combining with the yellowed grasses and rushes to create a feel of a cold autumn day. ducks and geese have long since migrated to warmer climes, leaving the water’s surface undisturbed and rife for a good freezing. SO, since we have had evenings well below freezing, the approaching winter is letting us know it not too far off, relegating summer and balmy days to fond memory.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD@78mm

1/4 sec, f/32.0, ISO 100

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Eagle’s Nest Ice Fall” – Bancroft

“Eagle’s Nest Ice Fall”

“I need the shade of blue that rips your heart out. You don’t see that type of blue around here.”
― Cath Crowley

Bancroft is a rural town in north-central Ontario. Known as the Mineral Capital of Canada, it sits atop the rocky Canadian Shield, some of the oldest rock in the world. Towering above the town is a granite monolith known as the “Eagle’s Nest”.

During milder winter days and now spring days, melt water pours down some of the cliff faces and freezes into “ice falls”, like the one above, towering tens of meters high.

What really caught my attention, as I was driving by, was the startling blue and turquoise tones in the ice. Enough so, that I turned the car around and went back for a second look. I expect, now that I’m looking closer, that the brilliant blue-green glow of the ice, which is in shadow, is caused by sunlight striking the top of the fall and being transmitted down the length of it, making it seeming ‘glow’. Areas where the sun is striking directly show as bright white.

I’ve seen those blue hues in other ice structures but nowhere nearly as stunning as this.

Nikon D800
Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G I AF-S VR Zoom @ 145mm
1/200 sec, f/7.1 ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Spring Thaw, but not quite”

“Spring Thaw, but not quite”

“Mist to mist, drops to drops. For water thou art, and unto water shalt thou return.”
― Kamand Kojouri

While the snow is gone in all but the deepest woodland areas near home, that’s not the case a few hours drive north of here.

Yesterday, I drove north to switch out some artwork in a co-op gallery I am associated with in Bancroft, Ontario and had the opportunity to drive around and make some photos. We also have a camper in the area, which we walked to, since the roads were still partially snow covered and the clear parts were soft, soupy much, as the frost was coming out of the ground. Interesting times many living in cities with paved roads never consider, but it’s a fact of life in the near north.

Marble Lake, the small spring fed lake that our camper is on was still frozen, but beginning to thaw on the surface, sort of. The mild days, with sunshine and above freezing temperatures, melt the surface, which re-freezes overnight. This freezing and thawing makes for some interesting effects.

This is exhibited in the attached photo. Apparently, the leaf had fallen onto the melted surface on a milder day and sunk to the ice beneath the water, that water froze overnight. Now, the slightly submerged leaf absorbs sunlight the next day, melting the ice around it, just a bit faster than the surrounding ice, creating an indentation, which capture other items blowing across the surface and freezing once more, as the temperatures drop. Bubbles of air rise from below and accumulate, getting bigger over time. I thought it made for an interesting composition and an opportunity to capture a small section of a process happening all over the area.

In a few days, the process will accelerate, the remaining ice will drop beneath the surface and the lake will be fully exposed. A process I would love to document one day, as I’ve only seen portions of it.

iPhone 7 back camera @ 4.0mm
1/2500 sec;   f/1.8;   ISO 20

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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or my website (some images available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com