Navigating the loose boulders that make up the shore of Unstad Beach in Norway was tricky to say the least. That statement is doubly true as you get closer to the water line because you’re not only contending with an onslaught of waves (and the spray that comes along with them) but you’re also tasked with finding solid footing on oblong boulders that are exceptionally slick.

Fortunately, once you’re able to find a large enough rock and get your feet planted on it, things quickly begin falling into place. This was about as close to the water’s edge that I felt comfortable with. The next row or two of rocks next to me were getting totally pummeled by the waves from the advancing tide and I really didn’t want to press my luck much further.

I ended up liking this vertical comp the most because it help illustrated just how far these boulders reached up and down the beach. I felt that it was the best way to really convey what standing on this particular beach feels like. And for an even more immersive idea, Chris Burkard, in collaboration with SmugMug, also got some fantastic winter surfing footage that you can see on his wonderful video, Arctic Swell.

Camera: Sony a7R with the Sony FE 16-35mm f/4
Filter: Formatt Hitech Filters Firecrest 105mm Circular Polarizer
Tripod: Really Right Stuff TVC-34L/BH-55
Stylization: Onone, Inc. Perfect Effects & Adobe Lightroom 5.7