Saturday, December 08, 2007

Snowmobiling Colorado.

11,000ft in flat light.
Flat light is almost like high winds above tree line in the winter, it can end the day. The best goggles in the world will not save you. The terrain contour vanishes. The light is being filtered by the cloud layer and falling snow flakes then it reflects off the snow on the ground. It is like staring into a light bulb. You can’t see anything except a bright blur. Natural features above the snow, at this altitude, this time of year are almost nonexistent. Covered by layers of snow most of the dangerous stuff lay under the surface. But in this light forget about seeing any texture variations that might clue you in to the bad stuff. We call it, “using the force” when riding in these conditions. We are rolling the dice with our gear and bodies.
Photographers love this light and try to replicate it in portraits because the subject will appear free of shadows, soft and with a distinct human quality.
But for the skier, snowboarder and snowmobilers riding in flat light represents your “Karmatic Product”.
Are you feeling lucky punk… well, are you?

JP just after sunrise. December 2007
The light was a little better in morning. We had a pleny of room to play.

Kyle Says, "I was trying to miss that hole."
At this point, a large portion of backcountry snowmobiling or "boondocking" for me is digging out sleds.