Despite 2014 being the first time in years where the amount of photography I did actually decreased, I had a pretty tough time picking a favorite mountain image. A bunch are more spectacular and dramatic than this one. But I really like the perspective and light, so this is the one!
Captured from the edge of String Lake in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming, you see three peaks, the center one being the tallest one in the range, Grand Teton itself, at 13, 776′ (4200 m.). The one on the left is called Teewinot Mountain, after the Shoshone word for “many pinnacles”. This peak is very nicely highlighted by the light from the setting sun, which is streaming down and bouncing off the walls of Cascade Canyon.
I was just returning from a great hike along the range-front past Leigh Lake and to the sunny, empty shore of Jackson Lake, where I had a nice warm siesta. I went off-trail for a couple hours and saw moose (including a baby), elk and deer. I had been rushing to get back before dark, but when I came to String Lake, not far from the trailhead, the sun was getting ready to set. I wandered off-trail and along the shoreline. I was actually more in wildlife mode, with a long lens on. But when I saw the light on Teewinot, with the Grand behind it, I began to look for good landscape compositions.
String Lake has plenty of rocks and logs along the shore, but I thought the partly submerged grass in this spot where a small creek entered matched the mood of approaching evening. The light reflecting off the water looked beautiful filtered by the grass. It’s been said that pictures will come to you if you let them, and that’s what happened this time. The framed composition just appeared while I was awkwardly trying to keep my feet dry (I failed). I set up quickly while the light lasted. The vertical composition was so obvious to me that I didn’t do a horizontal. I usually try to do both.
I named it The Sentinel because that’s what Teewinot reminds me of here. Although I have a number of very nice images of the Tetons, this might be my favorite thus far. But tell me what you think; don’t be afraid to be honest either! I hope you are enjoying your short work week!