5 reasons a budding photographer should hike the Cariboo Mountains

In Advice, Summer
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Words by Tyson Newell | March 6, 2024

Imagine a helicopter flying you into a remote alpine location, where the ridges and peaks stretch endlessly beyond. As you begin to hike with your professional guide, you see a sprawling glacier wrapped around a nearby mountain. You hold your camera with both hands, bringing the viewfinder to your eye, and just before you press the shutter, a voice calmly enters your ears, “Do you want some advice on how to capture an even more stunning angle?” The voice belongs to none other than a Canadian Geographic photographer, so you excitedly accept the invitation.  

This could be you. We mean that. Here’s why you need to get yourself to CMH Cariboos for a photography-focused Canadian Geographic Adventure this summer.

1. Youll discover the true essence of the Canadian wilderness

When you imagine the North, you see craggy mountains (the pointy kind that kids draw) and ancient glaciers clinging to their contours, all jutting out of swaths of densely treed forests. Far, far away from hordes of people, such is the vastness of Canada’s wild spaces.  
This, though you might not have known it, describes the Cariboo Mountains of British Columbia, Canada, where CMH Cariboos Lodge is found, enveloped by the rugged Canadian wilderness in every direction.  

“It’s the remoteness in the Cariboos, just the lack of people. Everywhere we end up going, we’re alone. There are no outside influences around us whatsoever. It’s just the people here in the lodge. The road ends at the lodge, and so there’s no road access to any of the places that we visit in summer.
– John Mellis, former Cariboos Area Manager   

This place is a gateway to the true essence of adventure. With its turquoise tarns, towering peaks, and vast expanses of untouched landscapes, the Cariboos offer an opportunity to engage with real wilderness (you’ll find no guided segway tours here). It’s untamed beauty in all its glory.  

Read: Road Tripping from Calgary to CMH Cariboos 

ROOM TO UNWIND — Your home for a few days: CMH Cariboos Lodge, nestled in a remote valley bottom with glacier views from the living room.

2. The opportunity to redefine adventure at CMH Cariboos 

Adventure can mean many things to many people. Whatever your definition is, now’s the time to rewrite it. Get ready to immerse yourself in the untamed wilderness that surrounds CMH Cariboos Lodge. It’s an exhilarating playground for you to explore. Prepare for an unforgettable journey filled with soaring helicopter rides, awe-inspiring hikes, and captivating landscapes that will leave you breathless. 

3. You will experience the thrill of heli-hiking 

Helicopter-hiking, or heli-hiking, takes you and your professional guide(s) deep into the high-country, where you’re dropped off to hike and explore. With alpine vistas extending further than your eye can see, you will know you are in the right place.  
The guides, who are accredited by the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides (ACMG) or the International Federation of Mountain Guides Association (IFMGA), know the Cariboos in intimate detail. With their guidance, you will walk along ridgelines, through storybook meadows and to viewpoints that defy belief (pinch yourself, if need be.)    

Read: What is heli-hiking? 

Speaking of viewpoints, you might want to immortalize some of what you see amongst the Cariboos in photos. As it happens, we offer trips with esteemed Canadian Geographic photographers and explorers who can likely teach you a thing about how best to capture this natural beauty, and make some sense of what it all means. Curious? Read on, intrepid adventurers.  

4. Learn from Jenny Wong, renowned Arctic photographer   

Jenny Wong, a fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society, is a dynamic visual storyteller drawn to capturing the raw beauty of untamed landscapes and wildlife. Rooted by her commitment to conservation, she is currently documenting the Canadian High Arctic, a place she considers both the frontlines and last lines of climate change’s reckoning.      

She never meant to become a photographer. In fact, her camera was often left lonely in her travel bag. However, she eventually saw that the world could be understood through science and communicated it through the visual art of photography. For Jenny, each click of the shutter is a vote for curiosity and her conversational values.     

Born and raised in Canada, and fluent in English and Cantonese, Jenny’s storytelling embodies cultural diversity and exploration. With Jenny beside you and the Cariboo Mountains all around, you will see the world through an entirely different aperture.   

5. Get advice from Scott Forsyth, a pro at photographing adventure

Scott Forsyth, Canadian Geographic’s photographer-in-residence and fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society, is your guide to photographing (and experiencing) the Cariboo Mountains. His book, The Wild Coasts of Canada, which depicts scenery across the world’s longest coastline, was a winner of the Banff International Film and Book Festival.  

With this passion for exploring Canada’s natural landscapes in the very marrow of his bones, Scott brings a wealth of knowledge to every adventure, infused with his passion for the natural world.   

Read: I’ll never forget taking these 4 photographs – Scott Forsyth 

Whether you’re a photographer with a well-worn shutter finger or a budding enthusiast, Scott will accompany you and offer invaluable tips and techniques for capturing the beauty of the Cariboos through your lens. 

A one-of-a-kind classroom awaits 

If the Cariboos are calling your name this summer (we suspect they are), and you want to explore in the company of featured Canadian Geographic photographers, you’re in luck. Serious luck. But luck won’t help you capture mouth-gaping photos, so we’ll leave that tutelage to the professionals and some of British Columbia’s wildest landscapes.