Michael Ryno Photography

Indian Peaks Wilderness Area

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Indian Peaks Wilderness Area
Lake Isabelle

Lake Isabelle

I set my alarm for alarm for 2:30 am so that I could make the 90 minute drive to the Long Lake Trailhead, which is in the Indian Peaks Wilderness Area and provides access to Long Lake and Lake Isabelle.

At 4:25, I arrived at the trailhead and grabbed my backpack that was loaded with my camera, a few lenses and a tripod.  Moments after turning on my headlamp, I began the two mile hike to Lake Isabelle.  This was a lake that I had visited about 15 years ago, and I was anxious to make this return trip.  

There was a nice flow of water in the stream below Isabelle Lake, together with several types of wildflowers, so I decided to set up the gear for this shot during first light.

Wildflowers beside the stream flowing out of Lake Isabelle. First light was beginning to illuminate The Indian Peaks in the background.

Wildflowers beside the stream flowing out of Lake Isabelle. First light was beginning to illuminate The Indian Peaks in the background.

Before arriving at Lake Isabelle, I stopped several times to capture the scenery.  Fortunately, the light remained fairly soft even though the official sunrise had already occurred.   

There was no shortage of wildflowers during the hike.

There was no shortage of wildflowers during the hike.

A photo from the shore of Lake Isabelle.

A photo from the shore of Lake Isabelle.

Unfortunately, the breeze was strong enough to add chop to the surface of the lake, which prevented me from getting a decent reflection.  

 

Shortly after leaving the lake, I stopped to get a few photos of the peaks in the background, as well as wildflowers and a small creek that enhanced the scenery.

While hiking back, I glanced across at Long Lake and noticed that there was a female moose swimming across the lake.  I quickly sprinted down the trail so that I could get access to a spot to get off a few clicks with the camera.  The moose then swam to the opposite bank and began running through the water.  I was able to get several action shots, although this was a bit of reach for my 200mm lens.  However, then the moose began to swim back across the lake towards me, and eventually climbed out about 20 yards away.

A moose running along the opposite shore of Long Lake.

A moose running along the opposite shore of Long Lake.