It’s Better (and colder) In Real Life

WinterWonderland3
WinterWonderland5

I can’t resist the call of the river, even at (especially at?) -25c. The way the cold transforms the landscape is always captivating and I especially love visiting the places where the water runs fast and manages to defy the freezing temperatures. It can be difficult to truly capture the majesty of the winter wonderland but perhaps that is part of what keeps me coming back.

WinterWonderland1

WinterWonderland6

WinterWonderland2

WinterWonderland7

WinterWonderland4

Karen McRae, 2015

The Jagged Edges of Winter

RiverIcedTrees2
RiverIcedTrees

It seems the river has been pitching itself against the shoreline in the cold and wind, frosting whatever it could manage to touch before its own edges are too frozen to move. Unfortunately, by the time I managed to get out the light was very dull, but at the moment there is new snow falling, and by morning the landscape will be transformed again. These fringes of the seasons can be so fleeting.

RiverIcedTrees3

© Karen McRae, 2014

The River’s Edge

At-the-Edges-12

At-the-Edges-4

At-the-Edges-5

At-the-Edges-6

At-the-Edges3The river ice is breaking up slowly. Shifting a little everyday in the sun and wind and really coming open where there are strong undercurrents. I was a little surprised to see this snapping turtle floating at the frayed edges of the ice, able to lift its head for air but otherwise shifting with the water like a piece of driftwood, too cold to move. It’s been a long winter for everybody and spring has been tentative. We have land now, though. Earth, mud, grit and weathered grasses. The snow is mostly gone, we are just waiting on the river…

At-the-Edges-1

At-the-Edges-7

At-the-Edges-11

© Karen McRae, 2014

Cold Enough

Cold enough for a rebirth of frost.

Shards assembling themselves

like a phoenix rising from damp ashes.

SundogCold enough for all-day sundogs

those almost rainbows – a compass around the sun.

Flow3Cold enough to feel alive

in the bright rays

Flow1in the cadence of the water

Flow2in the crisp beauty.

Cold enough to feel

until you go

numb.

°

© Karen McRae, 2014

In with the cold

DecemberWindowFrost5

DecemberWindowFrost2

DecemberWindowFrost1

DecemberWindowFros5

DecemberWindowFrost6This is what happens when an ice breathing dragon is trapped between 2 pieces of glass; your windows frost up and the temperature plummets.

The-Dragon'sBreathTechnically, this window has failed; there should not be moisture, frost, or dragons(!) trapped between the sealed panes, but I like to think of it as a literal ‘silver’ lining. Technical failure can lead to interesting things…

Happy New Year!

[These window frost photographs were made today – I have posted similar frost a few times last winter but it is always reinventing itself]

© Karen McRae, 2013

Cold Blue

ColdBlue2

ColdBlue3

ColdBlue1It’s hard to resist the beauty of a really cold morning (-25c early this morning, according to our thermometre). At the edge of the rapids the turbulent water shifts the forming ice into different shapes and during the cold nights the surfaces grow carpets of feathery frost. The horizon is lost in a fog of water vapour.

FeatherFrost3A closeup of feather frost on an icy surface

GoldenEyeDucksAs I was out making photographs I spotted many brave ducks that seem to be willing to tough it out and spend the winter in and around the open water. Pictured are a couple of shy goldeneye ducks above, and what I think is an American black duck below.
BlackDuck

The-Misted-CityA little glimpse of the city which is not far away

[Similar ice compositions to a post I did last year here, but the cold is a month earlier!]

© Karen McRae, 2013

Window Frost Details

These are the delicate details of frost growth on a window. It has since warmed up here significantly and these icy apparitions have now vapourized but when I look at these images I find they are suggestive of elaborate gardens and graceful trees, Chinese landscape paintings and dragons.
WindowFrostDetails6
WindowFrostDetails1
WindowFrostDetails3
WindowFrostDetails4
WindowFrostDetails5
WindowFrostDetails7
WindowFrostDetails2
WindowFrostDetails8

© Karen McRae, 2013