ROCKY MOUNTAIN PHOTO ADVENTURES
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IN THE FIELD WITH RMPA
Discover the always-majestic, rugged mountain landscapes of Western Canada like a local. Guests take their passion for photography and marvel in the spectacular canvas of the national parks. So much more than a photography tour, with Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures, photographers will immerse themselves deeply into the locale and discover the landscape from the field. RMPA brings their small groups (and their cameras) up close and personal to the natural wonder of Canada’s first protected place.
Trusted, experienced, and with a know-how of the area like the back of their hands, Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures is the #1 photography guiding operator in the Canadian Rockies. Sought out by clients from all corners of the globe - from novice to pro - they focus on delivering an unforgettable, unique, and completely-custom experience, that’s as individual as their guests.
The Rockies are the subject, and nature is the guiding light; the intimate workshops get out in the field, set-up, and then let the magic happen. They’re never disappointed with Mother Nature’s show, and they can’t wait to show their visitors the way.
Why Choose Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures?
Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures is owned and operated by National Geographic Traveler award winning photographer, Mark Unrau. Mark has been running his dream business since 2013 making it the longest operating photography tour company in Banff National Park.
Not only have we been around the longest, we are also TripAdvisors top rated photography tour company in Banff National Park.
But we're not here in the Canadian Rockies for the accolades. Our knowledgeable and friendly staff are all passionate locals who live here because they love the mountains. We are photographers, climbers, hikers, adventure seekers and environmentalists.
We treat our sensitive mountain environment like we treat our guests. We offer you the utmost respect and will give you our all to make sure you have the best experience in Banff and the Canadian Rockies.
Owner - Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures
Mark Unrau is an award-winning professional photographer, filmmaker and the founder of Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures.
Calling the Bow Valley home since 2001, Mark launched Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures in 2014 combining his passion for teaching photography and guiding visitors across the spectacular landscape of the Canadian Rocky Mountains.
Mark’s extensive Travel Photography has earned him international acclaim with accolades such as the Grand Prize from National Geographic Travelers World in Focus competition and awards from the Prix de Paris International Photo competition.
A resident of the Bow Valley for 4 years, Maxim has dedicated most of his time to capturing the landscapes the Canadian Rocky Mountains has to offer. Whether it be at sunrise on a mountain ridge or under the night sky by the lake, he is always committed to getting out, exploring and seeing what the ever changing mountain conditions have to offer. Being an avid rock climber, hiker and photographer, Maxim has acquired a good knowledge of various locations around the park and how the light moves around it, and is devoted to sharing this knowledge with the people who want more out of their experience in Banff. Having been with Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures for over 3 years, he aspires to give the best tour possible by visiting spectacular locations, giving tips and tricks on how to use the camera to its full potential and making sure that people always walk away with beautiful images and a smile on their face!
Kaitlyn's a born and raised Alberta girl who moved to the rockies after graduating from Photographic Technology at NAIT. She recently finished a two year apprenticeship with Burnett Photography and has been on her own this last year as a destination wedding and elopement photographer. She instructs night time photography at artsPlace and on the off season in winter is a ski/snowboard instructor. Kaitlyn aspires to fulfil her goals in becoming a certified mountain guide by pursing her deep passion with landscape and nature photography by joining the Rocky Mountain Adventure Team! Kaitlyn is based out of Kananaskis in the deep woods of the backcountry and loves to hike. To top it all off she has a 3 month old kitten that has been hiking since 5 weeks old. She has had her hands on a camera since she was six and is really excited to share the amazing magic this camera tool has to offer.
Gregory (Rocky 1)
Greg the van was named after my first client back in 2013. Greg gave me the inspiration to create what Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures is today.
When Greg first got in touch with me, the name of my business was Photography School Of The Rockies. He thought we were an academic institution. He called asking if I knew anyone that could guide him around the Canadian Rockies showing him the best places to photograph. I mentioned to him that's what we do.
After spending several days guiding him around the Rockies, a spark of inspiration hit me. There is a lot to be said about your name. I realized that I had to make some changes. A bunch of years later and a lot of figuring out, Gregory the van is now a symbol of where I started and where Rocky Mountain Photo Adventures will be going.
Jump on for the ride!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a private guided landscape photography workshop?
Our private guided landscape photography tours are one-on-one workshops where Mark will pick you up from your hotel and take you out to photograph and learn how to strengthen your photography at different landscape locations throughout Banff National Park and the Canadian Rockies.
I'm a total beginner to Photography. Is that OK?
Absolutely! We love helping photographers of any skill level from absolute beginner to professional. It's OK if you have never picked up a camera before. Our approachable style and easy going personality will help your client get great landscape images that you will be proud to show off to friends and family for years to come.
Does photography instruction have to be included?
You may be an already accomplished photographer or maybe someone who just want's to get to the best spots at the right time because you don't have a lot of time in Banff National Park. We totally understand this, but because of Mark's extensive experience in photography, he finds the best value can be gained when you are open to learning during the session.
Will we be doing lots of hiking?
Fortunately, Banff National Park has the best landscape photography opportunities very close to where we will park. We do not need to hike very far from the tour van to get amazing landscape images! However, depending on the location we can travel up to 2 Km from the road.
Do you have landscape locations that are off the beaten track?
This is always the most difficult question to answer. It really depends on what you mean by off the beaten track. Many of the best and most iconic landscapes in Banff are easily accessed. Because of this it of course attracts many other photographers, so there is a good chance we might see some other keen people where we will be going. There are some places that are not as visited outside of the National Parks and we are happy to go to these locations, but they do take longer to get to and may not be appropriate during the short time we have together.
When do you typically start your sessions?
We want to make sure we are at our first location with enough time for you to get set up and be ready to photograph sunrise. Sunrise is the most spectacular time to photograph in Banff and we don't want you to miss it!
In general, we pick guests up about 1.5 hours before sunrise. Times may vary depending on group size and photography skill level.
What happens when the weather is not perfect for photography?
We believe that great photography can happen in any weather! From fantastic clear mornings to moody skies, a great landscape photo depends on how you work with the light there is and of course, having a great composition.
The weather in the Rockies can be some of the most unpredictable in Canada. One valley to the next can have dramatic differences. Even one side of the valley can be raining and have sunshine on the other side. Because of this, our sessions go no matter what the forecast calls for. However, if the weather poses a danger to our guests or our guests camera's we will cancel the session.
RMPA's guides make the final call if the session will be canceled by the previous evening or morning of the session.
If RMPA cancels the session we will provide a full refund.
If the client cancels the session, there are no refunds offered.
What kind of camera equipment do I need?
We can work with any kind of camera from medium format to an iPhone. So whatever gear you have you will learn how to make better pictures with it. As they say, "The best camera is the one you have"
What kind of things will I learn during our private workshop?
Each session is custom made to what skill level you are and what kind of camera gear you will have. The most important concept that we go over is composition. At the beginning of the session, we will asses your level of knowledge and go over concepts and techniques that will help you improve your photography. Some of the things Mark is happy to go over is:
- Simplifying your approach to finding an amazing landscape composition.
- Steps to simplify and master exposure for that perfect shot no matter what the lighting conditions are.
- Learn how to photograph shooting towards the sun and get amazing colour.
- The easiest and most effective way to use filters to improve the exposure and quality of your landscape images.
What should I wear on this workshop?
The Canadian Rockies is a fairly arid climate at a high altitude. Because of this, even in summer it can be quite chilly first thing in the morning. Here are some recommendations:
- Warm sweater
- Hiking shoes with sturdy sole and tread (waterproof are ideal like Gortex)
- Spring Jacket/Rain coat
Summer temperatures average around 8 degrees in the morning to as warm as 25 in the afternoon.
Winter conditions can average around -10 to -25 degrees Celsius.
Private Guided Workshops
Photography workshops don't come more personalized than this!
Your local expert photography guide + a custom photo schedule + your personal wish-list of shots = and an exciting, unforgettable adventure through Banff National Park.
On all of our private Rocky Mountain photography workshops, the rhythm of nature is what we work to, and the options are endless. Grab your gear, and pack your sense of adventure. We can’t wait to map out your journey and show you the way.
Tailored to all photography skill and fitness levels, our personal photography guiding and instruction sessions are suitable for anyone who has a taste for adventure and an interest in photography. Solo, couples, or groups – we will custom-build your experience to perfectly suit your requirements and photography wish-list.
All of our private guiding workshops include snack bars, hot drinks and transportation to and from your accommodation.
Private Group Tours
Best Of Banff
landscape photography tour
Capture the most sought after landscape photography locations around the Town of Banff at sunrise and morning light.
landscape photography tour
Capture Banff National Parks most sought after and iconic landscape at one of the best sunrise spots in Banff National Park.
Public Group Tours
Banff At First Light
Take in the icons of Banff National Park, seeing this epic landscape as few can. Learn how to photograph the Canadian Rockies, creating professional-level photos of the majestic Banff sunrise. Focus in as the first light of morning casts it’s warm glow on Mount Rundle from Two Jack Lake and Vermilion Lakes. The tour will then head to one or two more locations, depending on time and light conditions. Your guide’s know-how and extensive experience in the Park will show you the way, giving you absolute peace of mind that you’re at the very best location and primed to get the photo result you’re striving for. All this, while taking in your serene surroundings - making a memorable experience for any photographer.
Moraine Lake At First Light
Take in the turquoise waters and the majestic Ten Peaks at iconic Moraine Lake, one of Banff's most spectacular glacier lakes in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. Focus in as the first light of morning casts it’s warm glow on the Ten Peaks.
Best of Banff
Capture the best landscapes surrounding the Town of Banff.
Capture the best landscape images of Moraine Lake and the surrounding area of Lake Louise.
Abraham Lake & Banff
Photograph the Winter Wonderland that is Banff National Park with our exciting landscape photography tour that takes you to the best that Banff has to offer including Abraham Lake and its famous methane bubbles.
Book Public Group Tours
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