Ambient light filtered through snowfall is among the most difficult to capture on camera in my view. At Lake Tahoe, six days into our California road trip, we encounted snowfall and temperatures down to -10-15 overnight. During the day it was cold, but not that windy, and we took a drive up to Emerald Bay, the most scenic part of the Lake Tahoe area (although that's like saying the sweest part of the trifle). Lake Tahoe has much to offer the photographer. During our 2 night stay I searched in vain for Bonzai Rock along the eastern edge of the lake. Emerald bay, on the south-western corner of the lake, offered huge photographic potential, but unfortunately we were constrained by the weather conditions and stayed off the hiking trails which were several feet deep in snow not far from the road. This photo of a california pine tree was taken just outside the car park overlooking Emerald Bat, and will never rank among my finest photographic compositions, but I wanted to try to photograph it because it just stood out in the gently filtered light, with a saturated reddish trunk set agains the blueish backdrop of the lake, and fragments of blue sky visible through the snowclouds. I'm pretty sure the tree was actually dead, but in colour at least, it seemed to live.
For once I wished I had my film camera loaded with Fuji Velvia as I think it would have set the colours off nicely, even if the falling snow would have caused a problem with such a slow speed film. Instead, I used my Canon 5D MkII, handheld, with a 50mm F2.5 lens (a great lens for using in bad weather due to the fact that the front element of the lens is recessed by about 2 cms, shielding it from rain and snow.