Lake Superior, Aurora Borealis and the North Shore Woods – My Favorite Landscape Photos from 2022

A couple of weeks back, I posted my favorite wildlife moments of the past year. I took a lot of wildlife pictures, but when the critters aren’t cooperating or active, there is always something worth taking a look at, especially during the magical morning and evening light hours. I made a number of landscape photos I was quite happy with. We had a few incredible nights of northern lights this year that kept me out for hours in the National Forest. Minnesota has some of the darkest skies in the nation and Mother Nature and the night sky did not disappoint. I’ve included a few images from various nights. Lake Superior gave me a few favorite moments as well, as it always does, so there are quite a few of those included in this post. Last spring I took a road trip to another one of my favorite places, southern Utah. It’s really a paradise for photography. I’ve grown to enjoy the desert, mesa and canyon country of Utah almost as much as northeastern Minnesota. Almost 😉 There are a handful of photos from this year’s trip, which includes my personal favorite photo of the year! So from snowy scenes to sunshine, from forested landscapes to desert scenes, from the northern lights on northern nights, to southern sights on southern nights, the rivers and lakes and woods and hills, these are my favorite scenery shots from the past year in no particular order. Thanks to all for subscribing and following along and supporting me through print sales and calendars.

April 2022 – Winter lingered on for a spell last spring. The thaw was slow to come. Superior National Forest – Minnesota
A blue hour sunset along Lake Superior at Temperance River State Park. The variety of rock colors on the beach here can be pretty wild. And it changes with every storm.
Summer serenity at Sugarloaf Nature Center near Schroeder, Minnesota
A rare SAR arc, or sub auroral red, during a wonderful display of aurora borealis.
The northern lights and a SAR arc lighting up the sky over the Temperance River in Superior National Forest, Minnesota.
Those gorgeous Lake Superior rocks.
Those first few snowfalls of the season always have more beauty than the next few, it seems. This was early November. The rushing river added to the magic of the first real snowfall.
A few inches of rain, dropping temps and a little snowfall. Perfect recipe for a stunning landscape. November 2022
I was a little light on sunsets and sunrises on The Lake this year. I was usually chasing wildlife if I was out taking pictures. I did luck out a few times. This particular evening was out of this world.
The eyes of fall watching with a stony brow. Potholes and fallen foliage at Temperance River State Park
Autumn paddle in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.
Lakeside path in autumn splendor. It really was a remarkable fall color season.
Sawbill Trail, fall colors and Lake Superior – Minnesota
Calm reflection in Superior National Forest. One of the most serene scenes I captured this year. A light dusting of snow and a touch of fall gold.
The view from Carlton Peak in Tofte, Minnesota
A nice aurora arc over the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness. The calm waters of Sawbill Lake and some of the darkest skies in the lower 48 enab6us to experience the northern lights quite often here in the Arrowhead. This night, another skywatcher was lighting the fog from a dock up the shore. I liked the way his headlamp lit the fog.
An amazing, early September display of the northern lights along Lake Superior. Tofte, MN
September 3rd aurora borealis. This was a memorable night in Superior National Forest. This display started as the moon was setting, still casting shadows and the ground fog over the creek set the scene off.
Same spot different day, it’s a favorite location 🙂
Sunrise color over the Temperance River in Superior National Forest – Minnesota 🌲
Lake Superior is out there… This view from Carlton Peak in Tofte, Minnesota was ethereal with a blanket of fog breaking up and rolling over The Lake – summer 2022
A climber nearing the top of his climb at Palisade Head – Tettegouche State Park
Crescent Lake morning
Summer sunrise at Split Rock Lighthouse State Park. This was an extra special visit, photographing sunrise with family during our summer family reunion on Lake Superior.
The Bears Ears – Bears Ears National Monument – Cedar Mesa – southern Utah is another special place for me, so I’m including a few photos from this year’s trip.
Ancient Puebloan petroglyphs, snakes and spiders? And Orion in the dark, Utah skies.
This peninsula of land held ancient Puebloan dwellings and ruins. One of the most memorable days of the year for me was hiking and exploring Road Canyon.
Mt. Ellen in the Henry Mountains with the uplift of the Waterpocket Fold viewed from the east side of Capitol Reef National Park – Utah. Maybe you had to be there, but this is my favorite photo of 2022. I’ve really embraced using my Canon RF 100-500mm lens for a lot of non-wildlife landscape pictures. The compression and scale and distance it can cover, especially in places like Utah’s canyon and mountain country, brings a great perspective to the scenery. I love the drive on the east side of Capitol Reef. The Notom-Bullfrog/Burr Trail roads offer some of the best photography opportunities I’ve encountered. This particular day I had wind, sleet, snow, rain and a bit of sunshine. The light was pretty good at this stop. I’m always intrigued by these Henry Mountains when I see them in the distance.
The Moki Dugway in southeastern Utah. A little steep, a touch terrifying, but well worth the effort.
The Big Crane – Butler Wash/Comb Ridge. Half the fun was getting there. I had an adventure finding this one. I didn’t have a map or gps, and almost gave up after a few failed side trips. I’m glad I found it. One of my favorite trip memories and photos.
Ancient Puebloan dwellings in golden canyon light. I was fortunate to visit some special places and ruins on this trip. Good light and photo conditions didn’t hurt! Cedar Mesa – Utah
Spring thaw and rains gave us rushing, raging rivers last spring. This was early May along the Superior Hiking Trail.
Waving curtains of light in Superior National Forest. This was a beautiful July night of aurora in the woods.
It was the calmest of summer days. I made a lot of cards out of this one. It makes a good print too 🙂 Sugarloaf Cove Nature Center. Schroeder, MN
Pre-dawn light and color on the beach in Schroeder, MN.

It was a fun, fulfilling year of picture taking for me. I hope you enjoyed the little recap of my landscape and night sky photos. If you missed it, take a look back at my favorite wildlife moments of the past year in a previous post. Have a Happy New Year and thanks for following along. See you in 2023. ❄️🌲

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