A mountain lake in fall: reflections at Lac de Derborence

Don’t get me wrong, I love summer. However, from a photography perspective, I am so happy that fall will be arriving in Switzerland soon. Photography life is so much more interesting once the summer is over. Because of the fall colours of course but even more because of snow slowly turning the mountain peaks white again. I find mountains without snow a bit boring, to be honest. This autumn will be a special one for me. I will be spending 3 to 4 weeks full-time amid the Alps in the Swiss Engadin region. I will be there to capture mountain lakes in fall and autumn in general.

Looking forward to dedicating most of my time to shooting fall colours, early morning fog on lakes, first snow on the mountain tops, etc 🙂

Lac de Derborence

Les Diablerets mountain and trees with fall colours reflected in Lac de Derborence in Switzerland.

I photographed this scene at the end of autumn in 2012. The lake is Lac de Derborence in the Swiss canton of Valais. In the background, you see a mountain called Les Diablerets. There used to be a glacier climbing down there not so long ago. No longer, unfortunately. Still beautiful scenery up at that lake though!

I captured this image using my 14-24 f/2.8 wide-angle lens on a Nikon D800E. No filters were used.

Cheers, Johan 🙂

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Visit our Autumn & Fall Colours photography theme for more photographs of mountain lakes in fall. The theme also includes:

Alternatively, check out our Mountains & Hills photography theme for more photos of the Swiss Alps and many more mountain landscapes from all over the world.

240 thoughts on “A mountain lake in fall: reflections at Lac de Derborence

  1. Stephen Cairns says:

    That’s the kind of place you make a picture and then linger. Or perhaps better to take it in first and then make the picture. Certainly somewhere to spend time and enjoy just being outside. Beautiful.

  2. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Paul: thanks for the compliment an for sure you will see the images from my current project pop up soon 🙂
    @Jean-Michel: merci beaucoup Jean-Michel! 🙂
    @Nikola: glad we agree Nikola 😀 Thanks! 

  3. Paul Turkowski says:

    What about snow-capped mountains, as probably you know – I agree with you completely Johan !! 🙂

    Your project sound great, I hope to see here some of those moments you had 😉 About this stunner: perfect clear! The light is superb controlled in this “the winter is slowly arriving” mood.

  4. Rik Kooijman says:

    Prachtig Johan. Door het strijklicht komt de structuur van de rotsen mooi tot zijn recht. Moet een mooie omgeving zijn en heerlijk om er te wandelen en te fotograferen! Wat hebben we toch een mooie hobby!

  5. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Wilfried : lol Wilfried. I first have to process all of it 😉 Thanks!
    @Anette : yes 🙂 This one already before I left! You were chasing bears then I think, Thank you 🙂

  6. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Mark : many thanks for the compliment and for stopping by!
    @Chris : thanks! It certainly is! 🙂
    @Betty : thank Betty! Glad you like it 🙂
    @Sandra : thank you Sandra ! 🙂

  7. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Kurt: thanks Kurt! Very sad indeed. There are still some huge beauties around here in Switzerland though 🙂
    @Milena: thank you Milena! 🙂
    @Walter: thanks Walter 🙂 

  8. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Matt: thanks for the feedback and compliment Matt! 🙂
    @kamal: thank you sir 🙂
    @Nora: thanks a bunch Nora! 🙂

  9. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Michael: thanks Michael! 🙂
    @Jutta: danke dir! 🙂
    @Natascha: best wel 🙂 Dank je !
    @Mutita: thank you 🙂 

  10. Kurt Harvey says:

    Wonderful, fresh image Johan! I’d love to be there…..simply stunning. 

    Sorry to read about the glacier that is no more. I know that several of the tiny ones we have left in the Sierra Nevada mountains have stopped moving recently. Very sad to see the evidence of climate change right in front of one’s eyes.

  11. Tom Tran says:

    Beautiful layers of colours you captured here Johan. Your upcoming project sounds pretty cool. Will you be staying in the alps full time? Sorry if it’s been discussed above in the sea of comments. :D

  12. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Margaret S.: that is very nice to hear Margaret. Thanks for stopping by. Hope all is well!?
    @Alan: you can’t have it all Alan! Next time i’ll drink a couple of pints of Guinness before I hit the release. Think that might do the trick. Thanks!
    @Markus: danke dir Markus! 🙂
    @Peter Paul: thank you peter Paul. Glad you like it 🙂 

  13. Margaret S. says:

    Perfect in every way, Johan!! The mountains are always beautiful but exceptionally gorgeous during autumn. Your photos bring out the very best of each season.

  14. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Piedmont: thanks Piedmont 🙂 Nice to meet you 🙂
    @Beena: you are very welcome Beena and thanks 🙂 Nice to meet you 🙂

  15. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Steve: many thanks Steve!! Nice to meet you as well 🙂
    @Robin: and what would a party be without you 😀 Thank you !
    @Maciej: many thanks for the compliment Maciej! 🙂 

  16. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Christopher: thanks 🙂
    @Gemma: thanks Gemma ! 🙂
    @Barb: so true 🙂 Thanks Barb!
    @Thomas : thanks a lot Thomas! 🙂

  17. Barb Kellog says:

    I agree, summer is great for the obvious reasons (it’s warm! for those of us in the norther hemisphere)…but nothing beats Fall for the colours!

  18. Athena Carey says:

    Oh Johan, I do miss these lakes, this one in particular. We had a lot of fun there and it was always beautiful!! ~sigh~ What I don’t miss is the scary drive to get there… Aw heck, who am I fooling. I miss that too. 😀 This is lovely – is it from that rock you rolled your trousers up and waded out to? ;)

    • Johan Peijnenburg says:

      Tnx! I will miss Derborence as well this year, but think I have good alternatives where I will be 🙂 This was shot at the big lake. You were sitting on a rock around the corner playing with your TS ;)

    • Johan Peijnenburg says:

      Merci beaucoup Thierry! That is very nice to hear. Why would you not be able to approach this now. You just need a bit of luck like me 😉

  19. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Ed: danke dir Ed 😉
    @John: many thanks John! 🙂 I will most certainly share and publish images from Ireland. I think 3 to 4 will end up in my portfolio 🙂 That will be in November though …. not enough time left before I leave :)

  20. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Shelly: thanks Shelly! 🙂
    @David: You are very welcome David and thanks for the compliment 🙂
    @Danielle: hey thanks Danielle ! 🙂
    @Christer: Thanks ! 🙂 

  21. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Joshua: thank you Joshua ! 🙂
    @Michael: thanks Michael! 🙂
    @Gina: thank you as well 🙂
    @CJ Cox: flat can be pretty boring indeed CJ. Glad you like this 🙂
    @E.E. Giorgi: many thanks Elena! 🙂

  22. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Qadira: many thanks as well 🙂
    @George: thanks a bunch George! 🙂
    @Margaret: Glad you like it and thanks for the encouragement !

  23. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @David: many thanks David! 🙂
    @Marilou: thank you very much Marilou! 🙂
    @Michael: thanks Michael! 🙂
    @Jim: keep coming back Jim! Thanks 🙂 

  24. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Jerry: so glad it did Jerry 🙂 Thanks for the kind words !
    @Grzegorz: thanks for the compliment and encouragement Grzegorz! I will take you to the area I am going now one day 😉
    @Kevin: you are very welcome Kevin and thanks fpr the kind words 🙂 

  25. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Michael: plenty of city and architecture indeed. Guess the lakes might provide some opportunity for long exposures 🙂
    @Baki: tkans Baki! 🙂
    @Michael: thanks man! 😉
    @Margaret: it was thanks Margaret 🙂 

  26. John Dunne says:

    Beautiful image Johan, such incredible layers of colours. I must admit to also looking forward to Autumn colours although I enjoyed the Summer also. I wish you every success for your month long trip, looking forward to seeing what it produces. Don’t forget though you owe me at least one image from your Ireland trip ;-)

  27. CJ Cox says:

    Such a grand view! But I will take any view of a mountain in my part of the globe, Johan ;). It’s pretty much flat lands where I live….

  28. Jim Lundgren says:

    There is a very strong intensity to this image..which is amazing because the subject is so calm and tranquil.. I love the tension between those two..probably why I keep coming back to this one!

  29. Grzegorz Piechowicz says:

    I completely agree with you, the mountains with the snow on the peaks are more dramatic and I assume you will have plenty opportunity to photograph them soon during your exciting trip. I wish you dozens of beautiful shots as this one, with great lights, shadows and reflections… Fantastic work! Top class!

  30. Jerry Johnson says:

    This one just stopped me in my tracks! Oh what a gorgeous tapestry of colour, texture and contrast you have woven together here!!!

  31. Michael Muraz says:

    I plan on focusing on cityscapes and architecture, so definitely a great area with cities like Ottawa, Montreal, Boston, NYC, Chicago somewhat close.
    However for pure landscape photography I think it’s less interesting, even though there’s lake Ontario and Niagara Falls.

  32. Enrique Palaez says:

    This is so awesome Johan , bravo !! love the reflection of the mountains gently intersecting on the water surface… nice job! 

  33. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Dermot: many thanks Dermot! The bigger you would see this one the more you would appreciate those layers 🙂
    @Alex: thanks and enjoy Alex! 🙂 

  34. Yasmin Simpson says:

    Dear Johan, to say wowww is not enough for all the beauty that you show in this image. Amigo, always amazed at your work and always admiring how you approach all the seasons… :).
    Magnificent piece of art!!!. 

  35. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Naghmeh: well thank you Naghmeh. Glad you approve 🙂
    @Bill: hey thanks Bill! Nice to hear 🙂
    @mamo: and thank you to Mamo 🙂

  36. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Davorin: thanks Davorin 🙂
    @Tor: thanks! You won’t ever regret getting the 14-24 Tor. If you want to use filters with it, you need to add about $1000 to you budget though :)

  37. Günter Schurr says:

    It’s a perfect autumn mountain image! The colours and reflections are very beautiful! I wished to capture such an image one day:).

    • Johan Peijnenburg says:

      thanks for the compliment Günther! You should go to this place in 2 weeks. Very nice to shoot fall colours (or go to Engadin like me) 🙂

  38. Tor Ivan Boine says:

    Aww. Dont mention the 14-24. I am so in need of a new wide angle. I only have the 10-24 for my D600 :p Just upgraded from the D90.

    Anyways, great capture man! 

  39. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Jany: Merci beaucoup Jany 🙂
    @Dominique: thanks and I really hope so Dominique. It will depend a bit on how mother nature will behave and whether it inspires me or not 🙂 

  40. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Sandra: thanks for the wow Sandra. Can’t have too many of those 🙂
    @George: thanks for the compliment George! Yes, fall is just starting here now. It is always a bit of a gamble when it starts, but luckely in the mountains we can target different altitudes. Hope I will survive the month 🙂 

  41. George Marquardt says:

    Brilliant shot Johan! A month sounds idyllic! Our mountains are well into fall already, with the Larch doing their annual display. I had my first hike while it was snowing yesterday; if you get another month it sounds like your fall runs a bit behind ours.

  42. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Sairam: hope I can keep it up Sairam. Thanks! 🙂
    @Michael: glad you do Michael. Its the last bits of it and some first snow. A nice combi 🙂 

      • Dylan van Graan says:

        To be honest Johan, the solitude is one of my main reasons for heading off into the mountains. Summer is on its way, everything is exploding into green 🙂

        I hope you have a good trip, looking forward to what you bring back for us to drool over :))

        • Johan Peijnenburg says:

          n a week or so the colours will start to explode here and shortly after winter will start 🙂 A great time to head into the mountains and I guess I will survive and stay inspired 🙂
          Thanks for the kind words Dylan ! :)

  43. Mark Esguerra says:

    Beautiful shot again Johan! And I agree with you about the Fall. When those colours come in things just look much more interesting and lively!

  44. Johan Peijnenburg says:

    @Sheila: thank you! 🙂
    @Steve: thanks and yes it is 🙂 Although next year I will go abroad a lot more as well. Have to keep things interesting 😉 

  45. Dominique Dubied says:

    No way to avoid that image from my stream Johan 🙂
    The composition and light are fantastic! I wish you plenty of fun in Engadin!

  46. Anna Ryndak says:

    Wow! Stunning image for the fist day of fall!
    I love fall colours too! It was nice to “meet” you on the show last week! I have so much to learn from you!

    • Johan Peijnenburg says:

      glad you like it Anna! And glad that you liked the show. I felt a bit embarrassed about the poor sound quality afterwards. Hope it was worth it anyway 🙂 

  47. Andreas Levi says:

    This is absolutely fantastic, Johan!! And yes, I agree with you about boring summer and colours in the autumn 😉 🙂
    Looking forward to your project! :)

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