Sun Peaks mountainsides are awash in the vibrant colours of wildflowers.
Photos by Sun Peaks Resort/Kelly Funk Photography
SUN PEAKS - Canada’s second largest ski area comes alive in the summertime, trading in the snow-white, powdery slopes, for lush green meadows and blankets of flowers that cover the alpine in a quilt of colour.
“The winter is obviously different than any other season,” says local photographer Kelly Funk. “In the wintertime it’s quiet, serene, and beautiful at the same time. Then in the summer it’s more of a getaway and it’s more rugged then I think you can find in most places around Kamloops because the elevation change is quite drastic from the valley bottom, so it doesn’t matter what season you’re up there, it always feels different.”
Kelly’s “Mountains of Colour” photography workshop included classroom instruction, followed by a ride on the Sunburst Chairlift to the sub-alpine on Tod Mountain. Events like this happen every summer. Check the resort webpage to see what is in store this summer.
In Kelly's class, participants learned about working with exposure along with better auto and manual focus techniques for photographing with flowers. Kelly says that macro, close-up methods can be used to capture the flowers but he also demonstrated how to frame the alpine flowers in expansive landscape shots that capture what the topography has to offer in a larger scene. Taking a hike with the pro really drove home the technique.
“I always like to see a blend of the blanket of flowers and the expansiveness and beauty of the whole area, that’s always kind of special for me.”
There is always plenty of opportunities to take photos throughout the festival but the workshop gave participants an early lesson in capturing the beauty of the festival at the start of the weekend. Lupins and paintbrushes (prairie fire) blanket the alpine meadows, stretching between forest groves. They just beg to be Instagram-worthy photos!.
“It’s so unique up there, when you think about the Thompson Okanagan area because it’s such a high altitude place, it’s alpine, and you get up to about 7,300 feet so for me that’s kind of inspiring because you can see unique things no matter where you are on the mountain.”
Use your amped up photography skills to snap photos during a guided hike or at the many other festival activities like face painting, Kids Zone fun, live mountainside performances, outdoor movies nights, and more.
“No matter what season you’re up here, it’s special, it really is,” says Kelly. “It’s unique in a sense that it’s only a 45-minute drive from Kamloops but the change in the topography and the climate is so different that you feel like you’ve jumped on a plane.”
During your visit for the Alpine Blossom Festival, enjoy all that Sun Peaks has to offer in the summer including mountain biking, golf, kayaking, voyageur canoe tours, stand-up paddle boarding, and horse trail rides.
If You Go
Check out Sun Peaks' Event Page for detailed information on the activities. Look to the right for the newest updates on Sun Peaks' Facebook feed. The best part? All of the concerts are free. Held at the base of the mountain next the village, it's a picturesque venue that will put you in a fine summer state of mind.
Are you headed to the Alpine Blossom Festival? Share this page with friends and have them stop and smell the flowers.