The Canadian Landscape Contest – Mike Isaak

Mike Isaak

©Mike Issak

In the summer of 2009 I hiked the 44km, grueling, Skyline Trail in Jasper, Alberta along with a good friend. This was more than just an easy day hike, which we soon discovered. Before getting to Tekarra campground, we had to hike up a good chunk of mountain called The Notch, in plus 30 weather, with 40kg backpacks, and an unnecessary leg cramp (on my part). It was an endurance test for the body. At the summit, we saw and heard a storm approaching. We rushed down the long, winding descent to the campground. Rain, lightning, and thunder hit as soon as we had set up camp. Luckily for me, the storm didn’t last into the morning and I was left with a beautiful, clear and crisp start to the day. I chose a rock to safely and comfortably stand on and waited. Light started to hit the top of the mountain and I snapped away. Unfortunately, I realized that I had a dying battery and a dead one in my bag, along with only one frame left on my memory card. I waited until the light was fully covering the face of the mountain and proceeded to snap the last shot of this trip. This is what became of it. For this shot I used my Nikon d200 with the 17-55mm @ 19mm, f/10, ISO 100, and shutter speed of 1.9 seconds.


11 Responses to “The Canadian Landscape Contest – Mike Isaak”

  1. Wow! This view definitely would make the hike worth it!!
    Some stellar photography, you’ve got talent 🙂

  2. nice photo mike, the mountain reminds me of the grand canyon

  3. Wow!!! Beautiful shot! A true Canadian landscape. Great work Mike!

  4. Bruce Reinheimer Says:

    Mike, that’s a terrific shot. Very, very nice colors. As a d200 user myself I am interested in what custom camera setting were used and how it was processed? I am assuming a RAW file? You can email me at

  5. Thanks for the comments!

    Bruce I would love to help you with those camera settings, but I sold my D200 a few months ago and now have a D300s!

    I will email you about the processing though.

  6. Bruce Reinheimer Says:

    I was just reading a comparison between the d200 and d300s.

    Do you notice a huge difference? I am planning a backpacking trip
    to Yoho this summer and I am wondering what to take for camera, lens,
    tripod etc.??? Any suggestions?
    Should I spring for a d300?


    • The main differences I am noticing are the high ISO performance, way better on the D300s. Also the colors are more vibrant and not as “dull” as they were for me on the D200, and I also find the images sharper out of camera with the same lens. Going through the menu and images, it’s a lot quicker to navigate. I’m also liking this video option 🙂 Can’t wait to get out in summer and take macro videos of bugs!

      It totally depends on what you are planning on shooting, and how much room in your bag you’ll have. If you’re backpacking with all your gear then I suggest packing as lightly as possible. For my trip I brought 2 lenses and D200 along with tripod and filters. Invest in a sturdy, durable, light tripod. Mine is a Manfrotto and it’s just too heavy, I’ll be upgrading soon.

  7. Love the layers in this photo. Great composition!

  8. Absolutely incredible shot. I can’t get over how stunning it is. Amazing composition. Plant and Garden Blog

  9. JonHessel Says:

    Excellent shot, stunning colors and composition. Beauty! Where exactly was this taken?

    • Thanks! This shot is taken on the Skyline Trail in Jasper, Alberta. At the Tekarra campground at around the 30km mark of the trail if you start from Maligne Lake.

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