It took a few years, but a central Alberta duo finally captured images of methane bubbles that get trapped in the ice at Abraham Lake, and one photo in particular caught the attention of thousands.
Theresa (Tree) and Darlene (Dar) Tanner of Team Tanner, Alix-based storm chasers known for their dramatic weather photos, took photos and video at the man-made reservoir west of Nordegg on Sunday.
“That’s actually the first time we’ve been able to get pictures of the bubbles. A lot of the time they’re covered or the conditions just aren’t right,” said Theresa about the frosty bubbles suspended in the layer of ice over the pretty blue water.
“There were lots. There were little ones, big ones, clusters all over,” she said about the bubbles in the crystal clear ice.
By Wednesday, Theresa’s moody photo of the other-worldly bubbles with Mount Michener in the background had garnered more than 46,000 views on Twitter, with NDP leader Rachel Notley among the admirers.
Simply stunning! 🌄 https://t.co/8Iut9SydQo— Rachel Notley (@RachelNotley) January 10, 2023
She said Darlene shot video of the frozen lake that showed the ice was about 30 cm thick that some visitors used for skating that day.
“It’s still scary and creepy when you’re walking on it though because it cracks under your feet,” Theresa laughed.
Northern lights are the focus of a lot of Team Tanner’s photos in the winter. They can keep an eye out for the dancing lights from their home in Alix.
“We can just open the door and look out on our deck and then we know if they’re bright enough. Then we go further out of town and you can see them better.”
She said they also search for light pillars, which are ice crystals hanging in the air that reflect off of light sources like a street lamp or lights from buildings.
“If you’re near an industrial area where there’s a lot of bright lights then you can see them quite clearly. We got a few of those photos a couple of weeks ago.”
Wow!! Intense light pillars tonight over our little village of Alix, AB! We’re lucky if we see them here once a year. Have a great Xmas Eve everyone!🎄#TeamTanner @treetanner @weathernetwork @weatherchannel @mark_tarello @JimCantore @saloplarus @GirlsWhoChase @WeatherNation pic.twitter.com/Hox1b4TO9b— Dar Tanner (@dartanner) December 24, 2022
On Tuesday and Wednesday, Theresa took photos of the thick fog that hugged trees and buildings, and she encouraged other photographers to get outside and enjoy the beauty of Alberta.
Heavy fog this morning on Central #alberta making for some great photo ops! #ShareYourWeather #teamtanner #abstorm @dartanner @mikesobel @PeakToSailPhoto @MurphTWN @YourMorning pic.twitter.com/ev5ABUHwvk— ᴛʀᴇᴇ ᴛᴀɴɴᴇʀ (@treetanner) January 10, 2023
“Be patient, dress up and take advantage of what we have. We’re pretty lucky to have those views so close to home.”