The wet autumn season in Alaska has coughed up only a few clear sky days. My nine day stint in Denali Park during Aug/Sept saw many dark gray clouds and rain. However, there were a few moments of brilliance, with an emphasis on the “few”. The fall colors in the park were magnificent, vibrant and almost painful to look at. They don’t last long however, in Alaska’s short autumn season. I’ll be sharing some images from that journey in the upcoming days. I’ll start with this shot, my only morning session with the big mountain known as Mt McKinley or Denali, (the Great One).
I know its been shot a million times, and I myself have many in my collection. It still is a lure however, and has a face that changes continually. I particularly like the low-lying fog over the lake, which is a common phenomenon when the air temp is cooler than the water temp. The trumpeter swan and ducks in the foreground offer a interesting wildlife element to the scene, but they also destroy the flat calm water and mess up a reflection. I waited until they wandered further away from me and the ripples dissipated for a more clear reflection. When I first arrived, it was flat calm and the swan was resting on the shore, but the morning light had not yet tipped the mountain. And, as the story goes, when the light came, the birds went swimming.
I used the 70-200mm f/4L IS, and made sure to turn off the Image Stabilization for an exposure as slow as 1/4 second. Failure to do so can introduce IS blur. The low contrast, pastel colors are a pleasing combination.