Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival


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2015 Banff Mountain Photo Essay Competition


We invite photographers to submit photo essays to illustrate their mountain related stories whether culture, adventure, wildlife, sport, environment, or natural history.

  • Each essay submitted is to consist of two (2) to five (5) images.
  • We suggest photographers include only those images required to tell their story - unnecessary images may reduce the overall impact of submissions.
  • ENTRY DEADLINE: April 30, 2015. $3000 CDN will be awarded to the winning essay. Read the competition procedures for full details.

The competition's goal is to showcase the best in mountain-themed photo essays – to recognize the best stories told through a series of still images. The jury is seeking a sequence of images that conveys a compelling story or message – with each image strong enough to stand on its own while conveying a greater narrative when viewed in the photographer’s desired sequence.


  • All entries will be viewed by a selection committee chaired by the Programming Director.
  • Finalists chosen by this committee will be viewed by an independent jury.
  • The top contenders will be presented to the public at the end of May 2015 who will vote for the winner.
  • The entry with the most votes will win the $3000 CDN prize.

View 2015 Procedures and Regulations (PDF)

Past Winners

2014 Grand Prize


Arctic Surfing, Norway
© Chris Burkard

2014 Photo Competition Gallery

Past Winners of the
Banff Mountain Photography Competition

2014 · 2012 · 2011 · 2010 · 2009 · 2008 · 2007 · 2006 · 2005 · 2004 · 2003 · 2002 · 2001
2000 · 1999 · 1998 · 1997 · 1996 ·

Photography Competition Inquiries

Phone: 1.403.762.6347


2014 Banff Mountain Photo Essay Competition Jury

Gordon Wiltsie is an award-winning photographer, writer, mountain guide and explorer who has spent more than four decades leading or documenting expeditions to some of the wildest places on earth. He has shot numerous feature stories for National Geographic Magazine, as well as scores of other publications around the world. Gordon has taught numerous photography seminars and has twice won top awards for environmental and cultural photography in the Banff Mountain Photography Contest. Gordon also serves on the boards of several non-profit organizations and is a long-time member of the advisory board for the National Geographic Expeditions Council.

Beth Wald combines a lifelong love of the natural environment and a fascination with the world’s diverse cultures. These two passions have led her from the Arctic to Argentina, from Cuba to Afghanistan, in a wide-ranging visual exploration of how we as humans interact with the land and environment that surrounds us. National and international assignments have included work for National Geographic, Smithsonian, The New York Times, National Geographic Adventure, Outside, Men’s Journal, and many others, and commercial clients such as Nikon, Patagonia and The North Face.

Sadie Quarrier is a senior photo editor at National Geographic Magazine where she is in charge of adventure and exploration stories in addition to editing a diverse range of other genres. She is also a voting member on the National Geographic Society's Expeditions Council and Young Explorer's Grant Committee. Sadie started working at the Geographic in 1992, left to work as a Photo Editor and Designer at Smithsonian Magazine in 1998, and returned a few years later as a Photo Editor for NG Books where she helped produce over a dozen books, two of which received national awards. Two years later she returned to NGM as a Sr. Photo Editor and has won a number of awards for her editing.

Presented by:

The Camera Store

Yamnuska Mountain Adventures


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Banff Wilderness Photography Workshop

An opportunity for emerging photographers to work with experienced outdoor professionals.