Fata Morgana

North America's tallest mountain, Denali, was glowing in low angle afternoon light yesterday. This was taken approximately 130 miles from the base and you can see why it is the steepest vertical rise in the world, ascending from sea level to more than 20,000 feet in that relatively short distance. The mirage at the base of the mountain, known as Fata Morgana, is caused by warm air settling over the top of a colder, denser air mass, resulting in an atmospheric duct that acts as a refracting lens.

There's a bit science to start your day. As always, thank you for following along!



New Camera!

One thing about these cold snaps, they sure make for a peaceful winter scene. We're gaining over two minutes of light each day now and soon the sun will return to this part of the valley, a welcome relief after being in the shade since late November. 

And with the New Year came a new camera body. This image was taken with my new Nikon D850! I am happy to add this to my arsenal, although 60 MB files will force me to be more selective when shooting or my hard drive is going to fill quickly...

Happy Tuesday!



Short Winter Video

There's something magical in the solitude of a quiet winter day, with only the sound of water rushing past. We've gotten another 6 inches of fresh snow and it's still falling. I was able to put a few miles on my skis today and explore the video features of the Nikon D750. I am by no means calling myself a videographer, but please enjoy a few seconds of solace.


New Snow

It's starting to look more like winter in the valley and was great to get out on my skis yesterday for the first time this season. Looks like we got a few more inches overnight to boot! Have a great week out there and remember I am running specials on both canvas (20% off) and metal prints (10% off) at my online store: https://www.colintyler.com/online-store/




Browsing Around Anchorage

“Can I help you?”

“No thanks, I’m just browsing.”

Taken during a heavy snowfall in Anchorage yesterday. Moose are common in residential and urban areas throughout Alaska, where they are often observed feeding, resting, sometimes even birthing calves. They are also famous for consistently ignoring traffic signs, so “Give them a brake” as the saying goes and if you don’t like the way they roam, then stay off the sidewalks.



March Snow!

No matter where I roam, it's always good to come home to Alaska. I was reminded of this today when I woke early to fresh snow. After a quick breakfast and yoga session, I grabbed my camera pack, stepped into my skis and hit the trails, laying down the first tracks of the day. This is Darren's Bridge on the Albert Loop Trail, Eagle River Nature Center. Have a great weekend out there and, if possible, get out & play in the snow!



Winter in my Backyard

I've hardly seen a cloud in the sky for the past week. At the same time, the temperature has barely climbed above zero during that stretch. It looks as though that is about to change with snow showers in the forecast for tonight and tomorrow, which is always welcome.

I felt the need to get out and enjoy the winter landscape before embarking on my next journey. In just a matter of days, I will be experiencing a new culture and exploring a new (tropical) part of the world. Still, no matter where I roam, part of me will always remain in this beautiful little valley I am so fortunate to call home. Have a great Monday out there and stay tuned to see where I land next!



Here Comes the Sun Time-Lapse

Here comes the sun!! After a two-month absence, sunlight has returned to our little corner of Eagle River Valley. I created this time-lapse around noon today, approximately 25 minutes and 288 images condensed into a 12-second clip.

This is the first time I’ve shared a time-lapse video and speaking of firsts, I am going to be visiting a new part of the world in just a couple weeks.  I haven’t announced where I am going, just know that: 1) It is a tropical destination; 2) It is outside the US; and 3) I have not been there before. That being said, it is not a beach vacation but more of a cultural immersion, so please stay tuned and as always, thank you for following along!


Cold Rain and (finally) Snow!

If you live in south central Alaska, you might agree that we've had some interesting, albeit obnoxious weather recently. After a couple days of rain on top of ice, which prevented me from being able to drive home on Monday evening, we've got a bit of snow on the ground again. If this continues I might actually be able to dust off my skis for the first time this season.

Be safe and stay upright out there!


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December in Minnesota

I arrived in Minnesota last week where winter is making a late appearance. A few days of low temps (uff-da!) has the lakes creaking and groaning as new ice forms. Meanwhile, the Midwest sunsets never disappoint. It's great to be back in my homeland for a few days to visit family & friends, make lefse with Mom, and explore the land that bore me.



Happy Halloween

Auroras often take on unique shapes while transforming overhead in what is known as a corona. Mirrored images resembling a butterfly or angel wings are common, as are human and animal faces. This is probably why ancient cultures used mythical accounts involving deities and spirits to explain what we now understand is the result of solar particles colliding with gas atoms in the upper reaches of earth’s atmosphere.

Despite having this knowledge, watching images take form across the sky is no less magical and how you interpret them is completely subjective. With a bit of luck, we may have an opportunity to do some cosmic gazing in the next few days as a solar wind approaches earth. In the meantime, I am curious if you see any recognizable shapes in this photo? Share your interpretation in the comments.

Happy Halloween! Have a fun and safe holiday out there









Skiing in Eagle River Valley

xEnjoying the beauty in my backyard. One of the best investments I made this past year is this set of Excursion 88 touring skis from Fischer Sports Nordic Ski. With all of the snow we've received this winter and the recent cold temps, I am able to ski on the frozen river and cover much more ground than I could by walking or snowshoeing. I skied approximately 15 miles yesterday with my camera gear on my back and look forward to spending more time exploring as the days ahead bring more and more light back to the valley.

Cold Mornings

Yesterday morning was brisk when I set out on my skis and I wasn’t sure how long I would last. Cold temperatures make for clear skies - we’ve been getting down as low as -15˚F at night and I have not seen a cloud in the sky for several days. Around 9:30 am, the sun made its way over the mountains and onto the valley floor, bringing a warm sense of relief. After the penetrating cold left my face and hands, I decided to keep skiing up the frozen river. Eight hours and approximately 15 miles later, I finally returned home, exhausted after another beautiful day in Eagle River Valley.