For professional photographers visiting Bend this summer, a helicopter tour can offer a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get some of the most striking shots of Central Oregon’s stunning natural scenery. Whether you’re on a volcano tour of the snow-capped Cascades or taking in the sights of the state’s gorgeous high desert landscapes, there are countless opportunities for amazing ‘doors off’ summer flying and aerial photography in Bend with Big Mountain Heli Tours.

If you’re about to experience on your first helicopter tour, consider the following tips to maximize your flight and scenic adventure experience and capture the best aerial photography in Bend and beyond. Let’s fly!

Choose the Time of Day

The time of day and season (summer, fall, or winter) will be one of the biggest factors of capturing images from your helicopter. Depending on the time and season, light and shadows will fall differently on the Cascades, rivers, lakes and desert landscapes beneath you. Have a discussion with the team from Big Mountain Heli Tours in Bend and let them know that you would like to schedule a scenic helicopter tour with the appropriate amount of light. Also, you’ll want to confirm that the direction of the tour will allow you to be on the lighted, rather than the shaded, side of any mountainous terrain. We can help, it’s our backyard!

Shoot With The Right Cameras

If you’re a professional photographer we offer doors off shooting in summer (when the air temps are pleasant) or for non professionals you can shoot through our helicopter windows. Be sure to bring a lens hood for your camera, the hood will protect your camera from colliding with the window during unanticipated aircraft movements. You will also want to wear your camera on a strap to avoid dropping and damaging it.

The Right Lens = Best Shots

Because changing lenses mid-flight can be difficult and result in missed scenery, you’ll want to attach an ideal lens to your camera before leaving on your flight. Pack substitute lenses in a safe carrier in case you have the opportunity to switch. In advance of your flight, decide whether you’ll want to take photos of landscapes, clouds and panoramic views with a wide-angle lens, or if you’re looking for the varying degrees of closeness provided by a zoom lens.

Glare, The Photographers Nemesis

While ample light is needed for photography, it can cause an inconvenience when you are trying to take a shot through a window. To avoid window glare, place your camera close to the window, without having the lens come into contact with the glass. You may also want to avoid wearing any brightly colored or patterned clothing that may reflect onto the window’s surface.

Know When To Set Up

Even though you will be moving at fast speeds, it’s important to take a brief moment to set up the composition of the photo in your frame. This can be difficult for beginners because of the quick pace of the helicopter’s motion and the sometimes-overwhelming experience of flying over such beautiful scenery. However, taking the time to focus on what’s being highlighted in the shot can lead to stunning photographs in Central Oregon.

Big Mountain Heli Tours has the local pilots and staff to ensure you walk away from your helicopter tour with remarkable images that you can cherish for a lifetime. For more information on helicopter tours and aerial photography in Oregon and beyond. Let’s fly!