To Infinity

Some early mornings in the Alps just take your breath away because of their extreme beauty.

Chamonix has the Aiguille du Midi cable car on the north side of the Mont Blanc Massif, on the Italian side of the massif there is another cable car that takes you up to Helbronner. The two high points are linked by a clutch of four small cabins that cross high above the upper Vallee Blanche – an extraordinary traverse, provided you don’t suffer from vertigo.

Today’s image was taken from the cable car on the ride up to Helbronner. It was early morning and the Italian valleys were filled with haze, or thin mist. ‘Ethereal’ hardly does justice to the sight that greeted me as valley after valley appeared, with the ridges seemingly suspended in space above the layered haze.

This was originally a transparency, scanned with a Nikon Coolscan. The colour version was mainly monochromatic, and I think this works best in black and white although it is a litte more grainy than I would have liked. Please click the image to see an enlargement.

Doesn’t this make you want to travel high once in a while?


About LensScaper

Hi - I'm a UK-based photographer who started out 45+ years ago as a lover of landscapes, inspired by my love of outdoor pursuits: skiing, walking and climbing. Now retired, I seldom leave home without a camera and I find images in unexpected places and from different genres. I work on the premise that Photography is Art and that creativity is dependent on the cultivation of 'A Seeing Eye'. I'm not averse to manipulating images to produce derivatives that may sometimes be far removed from the original.
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22 Responses to To Infinity

  1. Wow! This is really stunning! What an extraordinary shot. I don’t know what this would look like in colour but it certainly works in b/w. What an amazing sight to greet you first thing in the morning!

  2. Len says:

    We must be on the same wave length today as I also posted an image of the Alps today Andy. LOve the layers and the B&W choice really works well.

  3. oneowner says:

    It does work beautifully in black and white. It’s an incredible view.

  4. Yup certainly makes me want to travel…period! Fantastic image Andy and I really like the choice of B&W.

  5. Beautiful image. I really like the tones and contrast. Great job!

  6. ehpem says:

    Fantastic view, and photo. Looks as if it was made for black and white.

    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks very much. The colour version was almost monochromatic palest blue – even on the ridge in the foreground that was in shadow. Colour like that looks very uninviting and rather drab, I think. But in B&W it’s just a mid tone

  7. This is stunning, Andy, absolutely stunning! Fabulous drama here, black and white is the PERFECT way to go with a shot like this!

  8. seekraz says:

    Waves of mountains, Andy…incredible shot…and yes, makes me want to travel high…to be up there…and I don’t think color would compare to the pristine quality of the black and white. Very nice….

  9. andybeel says:

    Hi Andy I love the range of tones here thanks. Andy

  10. Super shot Andy!!

    Chris and I did that trip a few years ago, and shared the cable car with a guy who shot off a couple of rolls of film – probably one of the most photographed areas of the Alps, and rightly so.

    • LensScaper says:

      Thanks Paul. It is an amazing trip. We took the kids over when they were quite young and it had a pretty profound effect on them. When I took this image, which must be less than 10 years ago, the final section up to Helbronner was in an ancient tiny cabin more akin to a sardine tin than a gondola! The contrast between it and the Midi lift is massive – about time it was modernised.

  11. Great – nothing like the mountains for a good day out with a camera.


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