Crystal clear

A crystal clear mountain lake on a sunny summer day

Crystal clear
September 5, 2012 Johan Peijnenburg
In Photography
A crystal clear alpine lake on a sunny summer day with the Point de Drône in the background. This small alpine lake is one of a group of lakes called Lacs de Fenêtre.
14mm – f/11 – 1/160sec – ISO100 – D800E with 14-24 f/2.8

A few weeks ago, I was hiking up at the Lacs de Fenêtre near the Grand Saint-Bernard pass at the Swiss/Italian border. This area is well known for its nice mountain lakes as well as its view on the majestic Mont Blanc massif. After shooting the larger lakes, I ran into this small Alpine lake. The bottom of the lake is covered with copper colored rocks, which is typical for that region. In the background you see a Mountain called Point de Drône … which I climbed afterwards.

I captured this image using my 14-24 f/2.8 wide angle lens. Shot it at 14mm to emphasize the rocky bottom of the lake and to give the image a bit of extra depth. I used a 2-stop Singh-Ray graduated filter to control the brightness of the sky a bit. The image was processed in Adobe Lightroom 4.1.

Comments (172)

  1. David Kleinert 7 years ago

    Beautifully composed, nice & sharp with great reflection on the water 🙂

    • Author

      Thank you very much David! Thanks for commenting and for stopping by!

  2. Wow, very nice picture Johan Peijnenburg .

  3. Aileen Sorenson 7 years ago

    Stunning work Johan Peijnenburg!

  4. Dominique Dubied 7 years ago

    Gorgeous image Johan ! I know this trail very well, I hiked it several times about 10 years ago. Nice place. 

  5. Tim McAdam 7 years ago

    Beautiful view and photo Johan !!

  6. Rene Bechard 7 years ago


  7. Robert Skreiner 7 years ago

    Wonderful photo! 

  8. Yves Masson 7 years ago

    Belle photographie.

  9. Douglas Dietiker 7 years ago

    Very nice the rocks show through the water, sweet reflection.

  10. Athena Carey 7 years ago

    Holicanoli Johan this is SO beautiful!! Now I want to go THERE tomorrow instead of back to Léchelles to pick up my car. 😉 And I am a bit overwhelmed that you dedicated this beauty to me – thank you so very much. You are a special friend. :)

    • Author

      Another milestone achieved … someone said holicanoli on one of my images 😀 You should definitely mark that area for your bucket list. It is quite a hike up, but totally worth it. I will be going back in Autumn 🙂

  11. Jerry Johnson 7 years ago

    It is an excellent shooting angle and the natural colors are stunning indeed! Beautiful photo!

  12. Love it. Top notch landscape shot as always;)

  13. Author

    @Robin-Angelo: thanks for the wow 🙂
    @Aileen: many thanks Aileen!
    @Dominique: merci! It is a gorgeous area. You got to be lucky with the light and haze though! 

  14. Author

    @Tim: thanks Tim!
    @Rene: thank you and nice to meet you!
    @Robert: thanks a lot Robert! 

  15. Author

    @Yves: merci beaucoup!
    @Douglas: hey Douglas. Nice to see you around again. Thanks for the feedback!

  16. Richard Murphy 7 years ago

    Lovely work Johan 

  17. Author

    @Jerry: glad you like it Jerry. Appreciate the feedback!
    @Frederico: great to hear that Frederico! Thanks for stopping by! 

  18. Dane Clingan 7 years ago

    I TRY not to overuse the word “stunning”… but this is.

  19. Baldur McQueen 7 years ago

    Wonderful shot, Johan! Beautiful, clear water and stunning shapes/reflection!

  20. Goblin Calm 7 years ago

    nice job man, nice job!

  21. Author

    @Richard: hey thanks Richard. Thanks for stopping by!
    @Dane: I don’t mind :o) Thanks Dane!

  22. Author

    @Baldur: thanks for the compliment Baldur!!
    @Goblin: and a nice comment Goblin 🙂 Thanks! 

  23. Indeed crystal clear Johan, what a beautiful image. Fantastic love it

  24. jany viala 7 years ago

    Nothing to say it is magnificent.

  25. Color, light .. Masterpiece!

  26. Author

    @Anette: thank you Anette! Hope all is well! I am running away to the Alps again 🙂
    @Jany: thank you Jany! 😀
    @Людмила: thank you : D

  27. Debby Vos 7 years ago

    Mmmm this photo brings back à lot of memories….. :-)

  28. Trés belle claireté de l’eau au premier plan

  29. Magistral 7 years ago


  30. David Orr 7 years ago

    Fantastic Johan Peijnenburg !!

  31. Kurt Harvey 7 years ago

    I spent quite a few minutes of my lunch break just enjoying your capture. Very beautiful and refreshing. :)

  32. Fantastic landscape, beautiful mountain lake, wonderful colors. Just perfect shot. 

  33. Author

    @Magistral: merci 😀
    @David: thanks David!!
    @Kurt: hope you had a nice lunch 🙂 thanks nice to hear !

  34. Mike Sh 7 years ago

    Very nice choice of composition and ‘focal point’ – love how the sky almost feels like a cgi backdrop behind the towering mountain
    – Its surreal

    • Author

      Thanks Mike! Now I am really curious about what a cgi backdrop is !!! Everything in this image is for real btw … I don’t use PS … Yet :)

      • Mikael Sh 7 years ago

        I know its all real Johan 🙂

        A cgi background would be if we played hollywood and matte’painted’ the foreground to an artificial 3d sky made in matte painter fav application vue.

        Or vice versa, or anyother element. Like a 3d tree to give that nice stream some green swaying leafs in our blockbuster hollywood movie :-)

        • Mikael Sh 7 years ago

          If you are interested you can take a look at vue at

          Its basically the digital nature creator of choice in movies and tv when reality isnt perfect enough

          • Author
            Johan Peijnenburg 7 years ago

            Will look it up when I am back from my trip Mike! I had a filter that helped me out a bit and a camera with an amazing dynamic range :)

  35. David Shield 7 years ago

    Superb perspective, and an excellent even exposure Johan 

  36. Gemma Costa 7 years ago

    wonderful shot I love it!

  37. Cameron Siguenza 7 years ago

    Amazing shot Johan !

  38. Dalibor Pačić 7 years ago

    Fantastic capture Johan!
    Wish to go back to Swiss right away.
    I was there 2 weeks ago and it was great. 😀
    Wilfried Haferland also told me today about his climb to Bietschhorn, awesome. 🙂
    But on weekend I’m going to the Alps again, so happy. 🙂 

  39. George Marquardt 7 years ago

    This is great Johan! The reflection merging into the rocks, bounded by the green ridges, all comes together.

  40. Meg Rousher 7 years ago

    Fantastic Capture, love that reflection :)

  41. Milena Llieva 7 years ago

    Oh, what a marvelous capture!

  42. E.E. Giorgi 7 years ago

    oh, WOW!!!

  43. Joseph Eckert 7 years ago

    Awesome work, love this one

  44. Beautiful! I love this gorgeous scene!! The reflections are incredible!! I love this Johan!!

  45. Sangeeth VS 7 years ago

    Lovely capture Johan Peijnenburg!

  46. Author

    @David: thank you David!
    @Gemma: hey Gemma 🙂 Thanks for commenting!

  47. Author

    @Cameron: thanks Cameron!
    @Dalibor: glad you like it! Have fun in the Alps. I will be in the area of the Gotthard pass and Andermath in the coming days 🙂
    @George: ver nice feedback George. Thanks! 

  48. Author

    @Meg: thanks Meg!
    @Milena: many thanks Milena 🙂
    @E.E. Giorgi: thanks for the great WOW! And yes I should post more. Lacking time for it at the moment. Will pick up pace in a few weeks 🙂

  49. Author

    J@oseph: thanks Joseph!
    @Margaret: you are very welcome Margaret and thanks for the kind words.
    @Sangeeth: many thanks Sangeeth! 

  50. Nikola Nikolski 7 years ago

    Crystal clear, wonderful shot!

    • Author

      Dank je Nikola! Alles goed in NL?

      • Nikola Nikolski 7 years ago

        Het is zover en wij kunnen gaan stemmen, op wie dat is mij nog niet duidelijk.
        Verder mogen we hier niet klagen, weer is goed :-)

  51. Sumit Sen 7 years ago


  52. Martin Weibel 7 years ago

    Very nice Johan 

  53. Author

    Many thanks Sumit and Martin !

  54. Ada M 7 years ago

    this is awesome!

  55. Charles Lupica 7 years ago

    Johan: another stunning image Johan. I would imagine that you’re spending a lot time in the mountains lately. I wanted to go to the mountains on vacation but I got over-ruled and we went to the beach instead.

  56. Really superb mountain photo , It’ the way you want to be perfect by working, that’s the fact for this photo too ! EXTRAORDINARY , Johan !

  57. Mikko Tyllinen 7 years ago

    Wow! This is Absolutly stunning view Johan! Fantastic shot, so beautiful and alive!

  58. Vishal Kumar 7 years ago

    Amazing and beautiful Capture Johan :)

  59. ~❤❤❤~ 

  60. Lilia Lin 7 years ago

    The lake is sooo clear, wonderful the way the clouds and sky are reflected, really beautiful shot Johan :)

  61. Ah, there it is! 🙂 Really good one, the stone colors and textures are great, as well as the leading lines are… Thanks, my real life friend! 

  62. David Herreman 7 years ago

    Fantastic shot! Beautiful place!

  63. Delcour Eric 7 years ago

    Amazing shot. And indeed the water is so clear, you have to look twice to notice it. Wow. 

  64. Sudip Ghate 7 years ago

    Lovely shot Johan! The foreground just melts right into the background, superb composition!

  65. Nicolas Lotsos 7 years ago

    That’s a really great capture Johan! 

  66. Gaurav Mittal 7 years ago

    Fantastic :)

  67. Tom Tran 7 years ago

    Beautiful perspective Johan! 

  68. Peter de Rooij 7 years ago

    beautiful. very pleasing composition, and nice deep but subtle colours.

  69. Vitor Ferreira 7 years ago

    Very good composition.

  70. Bill Wood 7 years ago

    Spectacular Johan Peijnenburg 

  71. Jessy Eykendorp 7 years ago

    This is gorgeous, Johan. Love the crystal clear water and reflections here. Beautiful place and shot!

  72. Wonderful Johan. I like the wide lens look a lot here! And what beautiful colors. You’re really privileged to be hiking through so much beauty so often. I miss the mountains every time I look at your photos :)

  73. Rikard Lindby 7 years ago

    Sweet shot Johan. Looks like a nice place to hike for sure.

  74. Mark Esguerra 7 years ago

    Such an incredible shot! Great work!

  75. Eric Rousset 7 years ago

    Perfect framing Johan, so bright & clean

  76. Patrice PVK 7 years ago

    he graduated filter gives a wonderful effect, and foreground is so nice… Thank you Johan for sharing this one… :)

  77. What an awesome reflection in the water, almost unreal 😉
    It feels like the water is taking me with it, fantastic!

  78. Paul Turkowski 7 years ago

    Very nice Johan! Superb clarity and composing.

  79. ว้าววววววววววววว สวยมากๆๆ เยี่ยมมากเลย

  80. Author

    @Charles: thanks Charles! Yes, I have been in the mountains a lot. Just got back from Graubünden and Ticino. Hope you had fun on the beach anyway!
    @Peter Paul: many thanks for that very nice comment! 

  81. Author

    @Mikko: well thank you Mikko! Glad you like it 🙂
    @Vishal: thanks for the compliment!
    @Annette: thank you 😀
    @Lilia: glad you like it Lilia. Hope all is well with you 🙂

  82. Author

    @Wilfried: thanks Wilfried 😀 We should go there together to do some shooting. I want to go back when first snow hits that area! 

    • That’s a great proposal. We have to do that! :-)

      • Author

        he scenery is magnificent there, but we didn’t catch it with the best light and sky circumstances. I think it is a place to go to more often as it will look differently every singel time 😀 

        • I know that. There are many places that need to be visited several times until you get the shot you always had in mind… :-)

          • Author
            Johan Peijnenburg 7 years ago

            now we just need to find more time to do it 😉

  83. Author

    @David: many thanks David!
    @Margaret: great Margaret. Thanks again!
    @Delcour: merci!
    @Sudip: thanks for the feedback Sudip. Glad you like it!!
    @Nicolas: thanks a bunch Nicolas! 

  84. Author

    @Gaurav: many thanks Gaurav and thanks for stopping by!
    @Tom: hey Tom 🙂 Thank you!
    @Peter : great feedback. Thanks Peter!
    Many thanks Vitor and Bill ! 

  85. Author

    @Jessy: much appreciated Jessy. Thanks for stopping by!
    @Julia Anna: thank you! And yes I am lucky! You are not that far from mountains are you?
    @Rikard: thanks. Yes it is and even more so when first snow arrives or in early spring.
    @Mark: many thanks Mark 😉

  86. Author

    @Eric: merci Eric!
    @Patrice: you are very welcome Patrice! Thank you 🙂
    @Aline: wonderful description 🙂 Danke je Aline!
    @Paul: glad you like it Paul!

  87. Thomas Schaller 7 years ago

    Love it!

  88. shane holsclaw 7 years ago

    a beauty that screams to be seen full screen. feels like I’m right there. beautiful!

  89. Laurent Coppée 7 years ago

    If we like it? I sure do!
    I’m drawn into that amazing scenery perfectly processed 🙂
    Nice to see you posting in color every now and then :-)

  90. Johan Swanepoel 7 years ago

    This is so lovely Johan – well done Sir !!

  91. Author

    @Thomas: good to hear Thomas 🙂
    @Shane: hey thanks for the great comment Shane!

  92. Author

    @Laurent: merci Laurent! Trying to keep the balance a bit 🙂
    @Johan: thank you Sir 😀 

  93. A very beautiful scenery ! I love the limpid water, the rocks colour and the clouds reflections in the foreground. I very much appreciate your work. :-)

    • Author

      merci beaucoup Jean-Michel! I am really glad you appreciate what I do. Very nice to hear! 

  94. Dave Pattinson 7 years ago


  95. Michael Russell 7 years ago

    Beautiful photograph Johan! :)

  96. Markus Landsmann 7 years ago

    what a wonderful place.

  97. Such a beautiful capture!

  98. Author

    @Michael: thank you Michael!
    @Markus: thanks Markus!
    @Sofie: many thanks for the kind words and nice to meet you :)

  99. Rich Levy 7 years ago

    Johan , You have more energy than I do ! LOL. Beautiful an so serene . Good job , Johan…

    • Author

      Hey thanks Rich 🙂 Yes, sometimes I do have a lot of energy. Somehow you get used to strong uphill hikes when you do them often enough.

  100. Tania Sonnenfeld 7 years ago

    Amazing landscape, love the reflected clouds :)

  101. Daniel Ewert 7 years ago

    Beautiful landscape scene, Johan! It must have been marvelous to be here! 

  102. Author

    @Tania: glad you like it Tania and nice that you stopped by 🙂
    @Daniel: hey Daniel. Great to see you again! Thanks! Yes, it was marvelous. Will go back there in Autumn to catch the area with a bit of snow 🙂 

  103. Kerry Murphy 7 years ago

    This looks like a fine place to spend the day. Really beautiful, Johan!

    • Author

      Thanks Kerry! Yes it is a very nice place. Glad I found it., Will be visiting it regularly 🙂 

  104. Joel Tjintjelaar 7 years ago

    I missed some of your work Johan. This is beautiful in color!

    • Author

      I guess you have been a busy man lately Joel 🙂 Thanks and typically one that doesn’t work in B&W! 

  105. Yasmin Simpson 7 years ago

    Beautiful, beautiful!!!!

  106. =^.^=

  107. What a beautiful area! You’ve captured a gorgeous image of it!

  108. I missed this! Beautiful capture! Fantastic reflection and colors Johan ! 

  109. Author

    @Gatto: thanks again 🙂
    @Patricia: thanks! And now I want the same scene with a bit of snow and ice 😀
    @Emanuele: thank you Emanuele! Glad to see you around again! 

  110. Ben Locke 7 years ago

    I love those reflections. The water looks so clear. Fantastic shot Johan !

  111. Très beau !

  112. Paul Passoni 7 years ago

    Very Nice

  113. Incredible beautiful mountain view !!! Look how calm is this , natural and beautiful ! :)

  114. Jason Vesper 7 years ago

    Gorgeous view, wonderful shot Johan

  115. Author

    Many thanks to you both Syuzanna and Jason !!! 

  116. Michael menefee 7 years ago

    The details underwater add bunches of interest, well seen.

  117. Lisa RedWillow 7 years ago

    So much Beauty right here and as I look though each of your photos.

  118. Minh Nguyen 7 years ago


  119. Morkel Erasmus 7 years ago

    stunning clarity here!!

  120. Laurie Wade 7 years ago


  121. Great detasils in the FG! (^_^(

  122. Dan Ballard 7 years ago

    Great, great image Johan!!! I really like this shot.

  123. Vraiment un must ton image

  124. Espectacular paisaje .Me alucinan sus maravillosas publicaciones son impresionantes .Un cordial saludo .

  125. Margaret Wong 6 years ago

    Wonderful view of the summer mountain and stream headwaters :)

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