Photographing cars in the winter can be the most spectacular of things to do. And coming to the beautiful wilderness of Norway in winter time gives everyone who visits Ice Driver some great photo opportunities. You will probably be with us for just a few days, so it’s really important to make the most of every potential photograph you see. So, if you’re visiting Ice Driver this season, here’s our guide on how to take great pictures, take care of your camera gear and yourself and create some great memories from your trip.

1. Protection for you, as well as your gear. If you are cold yourself, you’ll have no enthusiasm for taking pictures. This is true not just for photography but actual driving too. Your mind won’t function properly and your creativity will be a big zero. Thermal underwear won’t win many admirers, but who cares, if it works? Bring some. Also, a good hat, some gloves and a good strong pair of boots are vital too.

Scandinavian light can be amazing, make the most of it

For hands, some thin gloves work just fine, plus there are some useful iPhone friendly gloves around these days that let you operate the screen whilst wearing them, well worth the small investment. Our partners at Mountain Warehouse have some great options. As for the hat? We do enjoy seeing very silly ones!

2. Protection for your gear. Contrary to popular belief, your camera should not fail in the cold, just as long as you do a couple of simple things. Keep your spare batteries warm (you do have spare batteries, don’t you…?) In an inside pocket or somewhere close to your body heat is perfect, then if you find the cold has killed one, swap over and let the dead one revive itself. The battery that you thought was flat will come back to life as it heats back up.

3. Go Pros We have a love hate relationship with Go Pro cameras at Ice Driver. We absolutely love these amazing little cameras and the footage they are capable of. But for some, they can be time consuming to set up, which inevitably eats into your driving time. This season at Ice Driver we will have suggested GoPro setup points on each car. Trust our team when they suggest the best location for your GoPro, as this means that we will not lose time as people try and set up and frame the shot when you really should be getting prepared to enjoy your drive.

Also, have your GoPro fully charged, with an empty memory card and on standby, ready to go. When your turn to drive comes, mount it, roll the camera and then forget about it.

4. Shoot a lot Whatever camera you are using, shoot lots and lots. And then lots more. Quite simply, you’ve gone to the trouble of travelling to Ice Driver. The chances are that you will not be returning next week and a full year may go by before you have another chance. So make the most of the opportunity and the scenery, don’t try to decide which to keep and which to delete, simply keep shooting, then decide later.

Keep a camera nearby, you never know where the next shot will come from

This means having large capacity memory cards, spare batteries, fully charged, plus your charger waiting back at the hotel room too. We’ve lost count of the number of guests who have missed shots either because the battery went down or the card was full.

If you’re shooting on a mobile phone, then before the day, back up all your images and free some space to make the most of the photo opportunities as they arise. There’s nothing worse than having to consider whether a shot is worth taking because your iPhone is flagging up that it’s nearly full.

5. Video. Shooting video in very low temperatures brings more things to consider. If the location is truly arctic like the lake at Ice Driver, the actual stillness makes the slightest sound ring out. The crunch of snow under foot can have great emphasis and engine notes in snowy locations ring out and echo back from the lakeside trees. It’s worth paying particular attention to recording engine noises, as the cars do have a more spectacular tone in the stillness of the Norwegian countryside.

If you’re using a fluid head video tripod, most of them become difficult to use below -10c. The fluid in the head loses it’s viscosity and becomes stiff. Not matter how much you back off the preload, getting a decent panning shot can become almost impossible. If that happens, take it of the tripod and handhold. Practice your handheld panning by swivelling at the waist. Start rolling the camera five seconds or so before it comes into view, smoothly pan through the shot, feet steady, while swivelling your hips, then hold it another five seconds to let the sound recede.

6. Return to base. The important note about taking care of your gear is not just how you treat it outside, but what you do when you’re done. DO NOT bring all your gear back indoors with you when you get back to base. It can fog up with condensation both on the lenses and more importantly, inside. Perfectly good cameras can become damaged because of internal damp after being taken inside when the metal and glass was still icy cold. Instead, put your gear in the boot of the car and then let it come up to temperature gradually in a hallway or other intermediate area.

Finally, don’t forget to share your shots and tag us on social media. We love seeing the great memories our Ice Driver guests create so when you post on social media, tag us in your shots and we will find them too.