Auke Lake Surprise


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Auke Lake is a beautiful area to witness a sunrise from. It is a 160-acre lake with the iconic Mendenhall Towers (and Mount McGinnis) as a backdrop. The coastal mountain ranges in the Juneau, Alaska region are second to none. Auke Lake does a great job of showcasing this beauty, especially with a colorful sunrise.

Getting up for sunrise in the summer is always a commitment. It was quite cloudy and I really didn’t want to go. However, I have been using Exsate Golden Hour for a while and it told me that the sunrise should be good. It’s not always correct, but I’m really glad I followed it’s advice this morning.

Over the years I’ve come up with a couple favorite spots all over town. This boat dock at the University of Alaska usually has a couple kayaks floating there for students to use (I think, I’m never actually there during the day and don’t know who uses them). The lines in the dock led perfectly into the scene and the kayaks were the perfect addition. This morning had a perfect reflection on Auke Lake of the mountains behind. The only challenge was the ripples that came from the dock whenever I moved.

I’m sure that floating docks are cheaper to build, but they’re a pain in the butt for photographers! Getting the kayaks to line up just right meant I had to push them a tiny bit then rush back and take a picture. The hard part was that every movement sent ripples into the lake that I had to wait to subside. I eventually got the perfect frame during the 10 minute window where the sky was on fire!