Chasing Color: a photo-essay by Casey Schneider

Casey Schneider '20
My first trip up to Glacier with a camera was in the middle of winter. I got a T5 for Christmas that year. I was excited to test it out on other subjects besides my closet door and the fence. And Mom was just excited to see a beautiful sunrise at Lake McDonald. It was freezing up there, and I shot in landscape mode, I’m sure, rather than manually adjusting my exposure. I don’t think I even knew what exposure was. It’s a nice picture, I think. It’s underexposed and out of focus and overeditted, but looking back on it now, I really like that composition. It was a good place to start.

Casey Schneider '20

My mom always knew she wanted to live in Whitefish. Her summer trips to Glacier Park where her dad grew up introduced her to a little corner of the world where mountains reflect the color of the morning. I’ve been beyond lucky to grow up here. Mom’s passion for the outdoors has fueled so many memorable childhood backpacking trips and car camping expeditions. She took me up my first mountain when I was five, and I think I’ve been kind of addicted ever since. And it’s the best kind of addiction I’ve heard of. 

Of course, there’s something special about framing those memories in my mind years later. I don’t need pictures to appreciate the beauty I’ve been lucky enough to have experienced. I can still see the wildflower-covered benches, waterfall-laden benches stepping down to Atsina Lake in the Belly River, which I’ve decided is my favorite spot in the world. I can still see the view looking north from the summit of Mt. Oberlin through my little eyes–there was the haze and the mountains of Livingston Range stretching north all the way into the mythical place north of the border. And I can still see the red ribbons of argillite wrapping around the slopes of Goat Mountain, beautifully uniform and uniquely comforting. 

But all that was before I got a camera.