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Mer de Glace

Mer de Glace
Photo Information
Copyright: Valerie FOSSE (valy67) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1727 W: 59 N: 3060] (9219)
Genre: Landscapes
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-09-13
Categories: Mountain
Camera: Canon 350D, Canon EF 18mm-55mm f/3.5 - f/5.6
Photo Version: Original Version
Travelogue: Six days in the French Alps
Date Submitted: 2009-09-28 7:05
Viewed: 5595
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 52
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This is the Mer de Glace (in English "sea of ice"), one of the biggest glacier in the Alps. It is located on the north side of Mont Blanc, the highest peak in Europe. It is 7 km long, 200 m thick and it has a surface of approx. 40 square meters. It starts at an altitude of 2140 meters and it ends at an altitude of 1400 meters. Each year, this glacier loses 6 to 7 m in thickness and approximatively 30 m in length - it's melting away alarmingly fast.

We went to the Mer de Glace on our first day in Chamonix. At first, we took the train up to the station of Montenvers, at 1913 m altitude, where we had a wonderful point of vue to take pictures. We could also visit a cave entirely carved in the ice of the glacier (had to go down 350 steps, and then up again, to reach this cave).

Then, we took a small path that was climbing on a mountains - it was a hard climb, because both me and my firend Daniel were not used at all to climb mountains. It was quite warm and sunny, and the view on the glacier was getting more and more beautiful as we went higher.

At miday, we reached some kind of platform on the mountain, where the path ended and where we sat down to eat. It was quite impressive, because we had reached an altitude of 2200 m at the time, it was the first time in my life I was so high. The panorama was so breathtaking I really couldn't concentrate on anything else, and I made more than 100 pictures from the glacier. During our meal, we also enjoyed the company of a wonderful mountain bird, a Yellow-Billed Chough (I will post a picture soon), who was quite eager to get some crumbs from our sandwiches.

As soon as we had finished eating, a big grey cloud completely engulfed out mountain, and we didn't see the glacier anymore. Nothing but white emptiness all around us. It was quite disturbing, even more when it started raining quite heavily. We rushed down again, reached the Montenvers station and from the there we took the train to the valley again. We were completely wet.

By the time we arrived in Chamonix, the weather was fine again.

The picture I have posted today was taking during our climb up towards the platform where we have eaten. I was tired, I took a pause to get my breath back, and I took one quick picture. It came out to be the best of the series.

The glacier is not as beautiful as in winter, when all the mountains are covered in snow, but it is still a very impressive place.

I hope you'll enjoy the picture !

nagraj, horias, CeltickRanger, marianas, nasokoun, roges, xTauruSx, Argus, anel, maurydv, ferranjlloret, boreocypriensis, Noisette, ramthakur, Pitoncle, Alex99 has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
Our Planetingridshaul 1 12-23 11:53
To anel: Glaciervaly67 1 09-30 07:45
To xTauruSx: Hello Deniz !valy67 1 09-29 23:54
To horias: Seara buna !roges 1 09-28 09:11
To nagraj: Contrastvaly67 1 09-28 07:24
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Critiques [Translate]

Excellent landscape showing the glacier (s curve) in its natural state with good viewpoint. Some more contrast would add more depth to the image. tfs.

What a great thing is sea of ice!!!
Wonderful natural creation!!!
Congratulation for this capture,the colors and the light is wonderful!

  • Great 
  • briGG Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 195 W: 2 N: 344] (1823)
  • [2009-09-28 7:46]

Salut Valérie,

Waaaa!!! J'adore! C'est fabuleux! Quel bel endroit. Il ressemble au glacier d'Aletsh. J'aime beaucoup cette vue grandiose! Le gris se confond avec le bleu et le ciel avec la glace!


bonjour Valérie

une très jolie photo paysage des Alpes, excellent POV et DOF
et un cadrage approprié pour cette image-là, les nuages au
sommet des montagnes apportent du dynamisme à l'image,



  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2009-09-28 8:28]

Hello Valérie,
This photo reminds me on the Aletsch glacier in Swiss. Great choice of POV. Beautiful sunny colours and good sharpness. Excellent DOF and composition.

Wonderful landscape, lovely colors!

Ciao Valerie, superb mouuntain landscape with wonderful glacier, beautiful light and splendid soft colors, very well done my friend, ciao Silvio

hello Valerie
very good the prospect that creates the helical glacier,also very good the soft DOF with the mountains and the clouds,it has a dynamics the photo that I like a lot,I have visited Grossglockner in Austria and perceive the magic of such regions,very beautiful presentation in a splendid landscape!
TFS thanks for sharing

  • Great 
  • roges Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 957 W: 0 N: 1329] (6264)
  • [2009-09-28 9:44]

Hallo Valerie,

First of all I wish to thank you for this series of Chamonix. It is interesting to see how these places look like in another season.
Your picture exceptional. I herd a lot to me. Regarding the comments that you have received ... You can never thank everyone. Each has its own views on certain photos.
Have a beautiful week,

Your photo is fascinating, because it truly shows global warming i.e. how the glacier has retracted. I saw it 37 years ago, and it is very sad, how much it has shrunk.

I am glad that you have NOT photo-shopped it a lot! The ash-grey moraine tells the whole, depressing story!

Excellent technique,
Kind Regards

Hello Valerie,

I visit this place more than 25 years ago see tn and my pictures.
good pov and fine colours.

There are yet little ice in it.



Hello Valarie, beautiful landscape shot with fine composition.
TFS and regards,

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2009-09-28 12:39]

Hello Valérie,
A beautiful well composed capture of this glacier showing clearly from a great POV that this like so many glaciers in the world is doomed to disappear. Excellent lighting and sharpness too.
Thanks and best regards,

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2009-09-28 13:35]
  • [+]

Bonsoir Valérie,
Une image qui donne à réfléchir! La Mer de Glace semble fondre comme neige au soleil.. que c'est triste.
Ton image me plaît beaucoup par sa composition verticale, ton angle de vue est bien choisi aussi. Les teintes fines en font une image subile et très belle.
Chez nous certains glaciers sont recouverts partiellement par de bâches en été et ce n'est pas une plaisanterie!
Une bonne nuit

Ciao Valerie,
une merveilleuse photo qui montre que l'aspect du paysage alpin, aujourd'hui encore, ne cesse d'evolouer, mais ... maintenant, peut-etre ou mieux surement, trop rapidement ...
Merci et félicitations
Bonne nuit

Bonsoir Valerie,
Une vision exceptionnelle de de celui-ci rivière de glace, nous ne les avons pas dans les Pyrénées. Merci de partager.

Hi Val,

An amazing scene capture of this magnificent glacier from nice POV with fine composition.
TFS and cheers,


Buen formato y bonitos colores, aunque si tengo que elegir me quedo con esa interesante luz que da a la toma un halo de nontaña. Cortes bien efectuados. Excelente documento Valerie:
J. Ignasi.

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2009-09-29 5:00]

Hi Valerie,
wow..what a classical view of perspective and use ines. i like the bending of the glaciers in lovely colours.
Very dramatic clouds and pleasant mountains view.


Salut Val
une superbe photo du plus célèbre glacier de France
magnifique point de vue avec les sapins au premier plan et le glacier qui se faufile entre ces impressionnantes montagnes
J'aime bien l'atmosphère qui se degage de cette image
Félicitation Jacqueline

This is a breath-taking bird's eye view of the impressive glacier, Val. The tough climb was worth it!
The day light was not in your favour, but you managed a great shot alright. The depth of view too in excellent -- the other side from where the glacier originates is awesome.
The highest I have been to myself is Thorong La in Nepal at a height of nearly 19000 ft, and thrice to Kala Pathar Peak near Everest Base Camp at 18000 ft. I once tried to sleep at 17000 ft in a lodge below Kala Pathar, but it was a nightmare. My school boys and I hellucinated the whole night owing to lack of oxygen.
Thanks for showing this wonderful picture from your recent adventure.

Bonjour Valérie,
Belle photo et jolies couleurs ! Ma soeur avait franchi à pied la mer de glace, et j'aurais très envie de faire comme elle lorsque je vois ce paysage.
Bon week-end !

joli paysage,juste un leger voile sur le ciel qui aurait pû etre attenué pour faire ressortir le bleu,mais c'est pour chipoter!

Bonjour Valérie,
Un paysage reconnaissable entre mille et que j'ai eu la chance et le plaisir de redécouvrir en juillet dernier.
Très belle image, très profonde avec une bonne retitution de l'ambiance de la haute montagne.
A bientôt sur TN pour de nouvelles aventures.

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2011-01-19 21:41]

Hi Valerie.
I was sure that all your pictures were critiqued by me. How I was mistaken. This shot is one of them, which I have missed. I like it a lot. Selected POV is amazing and allows to show a great view on a wonderful place. Light haze decorates the scene perfectly. Composition is simply sweet. Bravo.
P.S. I am very pleased with your return. I hope Denis is quite well and will allow you to take camera in your hands and share new nice pictures. All the best to you and your family.

Hello Valérie,

This is an interesting documentary, as it shows what happened during the end of the Ice Age when our mountains and valleys were shaped by the moving ice!
Photo wise it is a great point of view, giving a fine impression of the place...
The S-shape adds dynamics, and inclusion of the foreground is a wise move as it gives depth to the scene!

Pablo -

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