Frozen – Elk Lake Winter

I decided to go down to Elk Lake this afternoon, get into the water to photograph the guys leaving the dock. My initial motivation was to get them while the snow was falling but when the time came to launch the snow had stopped but I decided to give it a go anyways.

I wore my Stohlquist drysuit along with neoprene hood and gloves which were great while a was shooting in Tofino a week earlier.  I could stay in the water for 90 minutes with no trouble at all, but I neglected to realize that since Elk Lake has been frozen for most of the winter it was sitting around zero degrees. Compare that the to the Eight degree waves crashing onto Chesterman’s beach my body and head were completely warm but after 30 minutes in the freezing water my hands began to give me a bit of trouble and I was glad the last of the crews had launched.

Sometimes I question the value or sanity of chasing these types of photos especially when my wife is asking me while I’m leaving why I can’t just shoot from the shore. But pushing my physical and mental limits especially when it comes to a sport I love and have photographed so much and understand the movements so well photography like this is unique and has value.

But next time thicker gloves.





Nice that the sun poked through the clouds.







When I’m shooting in circumstances like this I focus on making photos with people and not just of people.  The more comfortable they are with me in their environment the more I can move in and out of it with them forgetting that I’m even there.