If you are looking for a photo tour of the Canadian rockies read on.

I’ve followed the cottage industry that has sprung up the last few years called photo workshops/photo tours.

If you want to photograph the Canadian rockies in all their glory you will not find an easier and more accessible place to visit. During my many trips to the mountains over the years I have come across groups of amateur photographers who have paid dearly for the privilege of being “guided” to secret spots. The truth is that 99% of these “secret spots” are right next to paved and public highways. They aren’t hidden and they aren’t secret. Want to talk wilderness experience? How about being shoulder to shoulder cameras all pointing to the same spot? I’ve seen it and it aint pretty.

The party that benefits the most from the tours and workshops are, are you ready? The “photographers” who host them. They have become the primary source of income for so called “outdoor photographers”.

I’ve had the occasion to drive by groups of photo tourists in Banff and Jasper. It’s like watching a group of toddlers on a field trip from daycare, all tied together and following the leader. Wilderness photography? Hardly.

Spend your money on getting outside and shooting. Money spent on extra lenses, filters, gadgets and tours is for the most part money thrown away. The ultimate in stupidity is actually paying someone to critique your work. Something else that I’ve seen online. Do you need someone to tell you if a meal was good? I thought not.  There is no mystery to outdoor/landscape photography. There are no shortcuts. For all the photos that I have seen from clients that went on tours, they could have done just as well on their own.

A few hundred dollars for advice to “improve” your photography? Obviously P. T. Barnum was right, suckers are born every minute. Don’t be a sucker.

Keep your money in your pocket. You’ll get there just as fast or maybe even faster.


  1. Hello Dan, not heard from you in a while trust things are OK on the Alberta prairie. Just want to thank you for another inspirational year of photos and tips. Your entrance into the dark with aurora and especially the Milky Way has been wonderful. Still hope to see that Rav out there one day, maybe I need to venture west of 15 occasionally. Thanks again Dan, looking forward to 2014, lots of snow to photograph!

  2. Hi Bryan,

    Happy New Year to you!

    Best wishes to you in 2014.


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