Ryan Dickie of @winterhawkstudios is an indigenous wilderness photographer based in Fort Nelson, British Columbia. Growing up along the Alaska Highway, his work is a reflection of his passion and love for the place he calls home.
“My Name is Ryan Dickie, and I am a photographer based in Fort Nelson, BC. I am also the curator for @explorealaskahighway and over the next week, I will be sharing with you some of my personal favourite places to explore along the highway with a focus on the summer season. To kick things off, I selected this image from an early morning sunrise at the top of the Nonda Creek Corridor. This 25km route starts at mile 409 on the Alaska Highway(near Toad River), and provides access to the high alpine slopes overlooking Muncho Lake Provincial Park to the west.”
“I don’t spend as much time in the South Peace as I’d like. Dawson Creek is mile 0 of the Alaska Highway, so the area is most definitely steeped in history. For example, the prairie city was a transshipment point during the construction of the Alaska Highway in 1942. Equipment, men, and supplies needed for the huge undertaking were shipped by rail to Dawson Creek during that time. No doubt, this certainly expedited the growth and economy in the area. Many of the original wooden train trestle bridges from the past still stand to this day. Impressive feats of early engineering, they are a sight to behold.”
“Approaching the summit of Mount St. George, high above the Alaska Highway in Stone Mountain Provincial Park. A two hour drive north of my home in Fort Nelson, the park sits at the highest point in elevation along the entire Alaska Highway. Given its high alpine location, it is indeed a beautiful playground for the adventurous soul. In my opinion, there is no better way to end a long day exploring the park than by cooking supper over the fire and sitting on the shores of nearby Summit Lake during sunset.”
“A popular spot amongst locals, the Fort Nelson Demonstration Forest is a great place to stretch the legs if your in the community for any length of time. Located on the northwest corner of town, there are a number of trails varying in distance that will take you through lush and towering aspen stands typical of a boreal forest setting.”
“The Alaska Highway is the only public highway that travels through an epic wilderness known as the Muskwa-Kechika. This special management area is roughly the size of Ireland, and is referred to as the ‘Serengeti of the North’ due to its abundance of wildlife. The 16 million hectare tract of land features countless rivers, lakes, rugged mountain vistas, and thriving forests that have yet to be hindered by our modern way of life. Like the first people long before us, taking a step through this wilderness is like taking a leap back to a simpler, more primitive time. I feel very fortunate to call this part of the world my home.”
“I often tell people looking to head north on the Alaska Highway, to try and plan their trip in August. Why? Well typically this month marks the return of darker skies and the possibility to see the Northern Lights is back after the long days of mid summer shorten. I snapped this photo underneath the Muskwa River bridge, the lowest point in elevation along the highway, and a popular place to watch the northern lights for locals.”
“As a photographer, I am pretty lucky to call the Alaska Highway home. Living so close to the northern Rockies, I often take a day trip up the highway in search of wildlife. Most of the time, I come across something. Stone Sheep are almost a sure bet as they like to hand around the ‘rock cut’ in Stone Mountain Provincial Park. In closing, I’d like to encourage anyone traveling the Alaska Highway in the future to use the hashtag #explorealaskahighway. The @explorealaskahighway handle is a collaboration among the Northeast BC Tourism Co-op and has been created to help share the beauty around us here along the historic stretch of road we call home.”
To see more of Ryan’s work, follow @winterhawkstudios on Instagram.
-the Alaska Highway