Sleigh ride dinners are popular at Lone Mountain Ranch in Big Sky, Montana so I decided to take part in the experience. Forty people loaded into the sleighs, all wrapped in blankets against the cold, and we headed into the dark woods for dinner at a log cabin. It was pitch black and I could barely see the horses pulling the other sleighs as they passed under gas lanterns.
After a flavorful prime rib dinner accompanied by cowboy music, I went outside to start photographing in the dim light. Remembering my earlier sighting of the horse’s silhouette against the light, I realized all I had to do was find a point of view that would block the lantern light behind the object that I wanted to be the focus of the picture.
Photo Tip: I put my camera on a tripod and switched the lens to manual focus because it was too dark for the autofocus to work. I chose an ISO setting of 3200 to give me a reasonably high shutter speed of one second. I shot 20 to 30 pictures, knowing the horses wouldn’t hold still for long. One of the sleigh drivers turned on a flashlight and lit the snow from the left side, adding just a little something extra to this frame giving me the picture I needed.