climbing-camp endeavours, which Harmon enjoyed but ultimately found restrictive to his art. Travelling with large groups of people, keeping their pace (literally roped to their pace on the climbs), and going where they went often prevented him from catching the images he sought, His style required both a freedom to roam and a freedom to wait. An auspicious meeting of light and subject was not an event that occurred on demand, and on occasion Harmon’s photographic ‘lingerings’ would become major feats of endurance.* Thus as years passed the photographer began to organize his own trips, making it clear to everyone at the outset that it was a photographic expedition to be taken at a photographer’s pace. It should be noted, though, that Harmon remained a strong supporter of any group effort that would involve people with the mountains, He maintained close contacts with the ACC and was a founding member of both the Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies, established in 1924, and the Sky Line Trail Hikers of the Canadian Rockies, organized in 1933.
Recognition came early. By 1908 the Banff paper, the Crag and Canyon, was keeping a close eye on the activities of the ‘artistic photographer’, and in 1910, Longstaff, in an article on the Purcells trip in the Canadian Alpine Journal (iii, 1911), opined that the expedition was ‘fortunate in getting Mr. Byron Harmon , , , whose Canadian mountain photographs are so deservedly popular, to come with us, ... '
*Walter Wilcox, in Tlie Canadian Rockies (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1913), writes eloquently of the need for patience if one is to photograph the Rockies successfully:’ ... it is easy to prove that in an entire year there are only a few minutes, or at the most, a few hours in which the conditions are perfect for exposing a plate. Let us say that only during three months is the ground free of snow. Of these ninety days the large majority will be either stormy, or overcast, or very windy, and of the remainder some will be densely smoky, or too brilliant, so that the problem quickly narrows down to a possible ten perfect days. In each of these there will be only one or two hours in which the direction of sunlight is favourable for any given picture, and during these hours only a short time in which the ever·drifting douds are properly grouped, the water surface unruffled, and the sunlight falling on foreground, or distance, or wherever you desire it to be’ (p. 213).