After having a bit of a scare with a moose last fall, the thought of having to go out into the woods alone for photography has weighed heavily on my mind. Sure, I could invite Mr. Bastard, fellow photographers or friends to come along, but the process of convincing people to wake up before some would even go to bed has proven time and again to be a pointless endeavor. A more reliable answer to combat the lonliness was on my mind, but it took a little bit of persuasion to get Mr Bastard on board.
He finally caved, and last week we adopted a young dog (1 year old) from a family whose little one was suffering from allergies. Her name is Creepy (yes, Creepy Bastard, you didn't think we'd name her something normal did you?) and she has quickly become the third and definitely the cutest member of the Bastard family. We are both absolutely smitten with her. I admit, I have been a lazy photographer and I have a slough of crappy iphone photos and videos of our new addition, but sadly, no real photos to share yet.
Eager to put my new photo adventure partner into action, I woke up at 3:30 Sunday morning to make sunrise at Castle Junction in Banff National Park. We arrived just as the sun was peeking out from behind the mountains and I strapped the usual camera bag, bear spray and tripod to my waist. The dog leash was added onto the belt and away we went, trading turns pulling each other along the path. (She doesn't do leashes very well yet)
Not long after setting up my camera and tripod on the banks of the Bow river, Creepy warned me of an approaching intruder into our slice of paradise. A fellow photographer had joined our ranks along the river to wait for that moment when the light hit the mountain and Creepy barked and growled and nearly dragged me off my feet to meet him. After a while, the photographer, who mentioned he had been shooting star trails all evening, headed back to his vehicle for a much needed rest, Creepy barked and growled to let me know he was coming near us again.
Perfect, I thought, she's much more aware of our surroundings than I am, she'll add a great set of ears and eyes while I'm lost in my world of apertures and shutter speeds.
Not ten minutes later, a vehicle backed up over the bridge I was crouching under and the photographer shouted a warning, there was a coyote on the other side of the river headed our way. I thanked him and watched for the animal. Sure enough, the Coyote emerged out of the brush on the other side of the river, not 30 feet away from us, as Creepy sniffled around the riverbank, oblivious to the animal's presence.
Some watch dog she turned out to be, but it was still nice to have company
Sadly, after all the effort put in to the trip, the light did not work in my favour and I came home with very few photos to process. Can't win them all, though I seem to have my fair share of stinker trips this year.
I did take the opportunity to scout around some of my favourite locations to check the status of the ponds, streams and lakes to determine where my next morning adventure will be and I already have a brand new location in mind that I'm excited to explore.