Icicles - Lady Northcotes Canyon

Travis Easton

Boronia, Australia

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Artist's Description

This photo achieved a highly commended status in the 2007 ANZANG: Nature and Landscape Photographer of the Year Award.

Ironically the key factors in this photograph were all negative ones, bad weather, poor light, a pitiful ski season, and a less than ideal time to go.

As a teacher I only have the opportunity to go ski touring in the school holidays which is either side of the best part of the ski season. Usually this means that I have to travel to the Main Range in NSW which is a fair hike from my home in Melbourne to get to any snow. I had spent the previous day skiing out from Thredbo to the ice covered Lake Albina and as this season had not been overly good the cover was quite patchy. The day I took this shot I had planned to ski up Australia’s second and eighth highest summits, Mt Townsend and Alice Rawson Peak but the weather had produced white out conditions on the heights so by default I ended up skiing below the cloud cover in Lady Northcote’s Canyon.

Not too far from my camp I saw these icicles high up a cliff on the Gorge wall. Being alone and so far from assistance should anything go wrong I was in two minds as to whether I should attempt to get to them or not. On three occasions in the most difficult spots I reassessed this decision but the closer I got the better they looked so imprudence won out the day and fortunately nothing went wrong. I don’t know whether it was my presence or the icicles time had come, but after getting two frames off the whole structure collapsed, fortunately the shots came out well. The other element of serendipity was the poor light, in better conditions the icicles would have been dazzlingly bright mitigating any chance of capturing detail in their delicate structure.

I have been back to this same spot on two occasions since then to try and recapture this scene with a tripod and better gear but the trips occurred in better conditions resulting in the entire slope having a good cover of snow and therefore no icicles. The fleeting nature of these sorts of scenes is one of the things I love about photography; you can literally eternalise unrepeatable scenes, be it icicles, a sunset or patterns in the sand, what a gift.

Sold two framed 12″×18″ of this a little beauty.

For other shots from this area check out my Kosciuszko gallery.

To check out other mountain photographs see my Mountains gallery.

$30 a month of photography related profits go to the Wilderness Society

Artwork Comments

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