Alan Barrett Images | The Bigger Picture | Abraham Lake, Alberta

Once the lakes in the Canadian Rockies ice over at the onset of winter, the first snowfall turns them into white sheets, devoid of photographic interest. The one exception is Abraham Lake, a man-made lake along Highway 11, where the lie of the mountains funnels the wind down the length of the lake, scouring away the snow to reveal fascinating ice patterns. In early winter the edge of the water begins to freeze and it is only in mid-winter that one can safely walk out onto the ice, and even then, local knowledge is highly desirable to know where to avoid.

We were introduced to the region by the well-known Canadian photographer Darwin Wiggett, who runs tours out of Aurum Lodge on the edge of the lake, together with Alan Ernst, the lodge owner. They ensured our safety and provided the opportunity for some wonderful landscape photography.