Bansko calendar 2013, by hand

Nov 21, 2012 3 Comments by

Bansko calendar 2013

The making of the new Bansko calendar, by hand, for 2013 started out in January.

And it’s just finished today. And because it’s been one of the key items of the week, then I thought I would show you some more months. But a reminder, that for all early bookings (over £100/€125) on the ski packages here, you receive this stylish page per month Bansko calendar for free.

The booking season is in full swing and Bansko is buzzing with activity. Preparations for the coming ski season are going on everywhere. Stay tuned for what’s new, or subscribe to newsletter and you’ll receive all the news in the run up to the new ski season .

So back to the calendar, the main tasks for the designer have been selecting the thirteen photographs. Whilst some nice pictures had to be left out — I think the balance is right.

In the end, I left the job to the calendar designer, the same fair hand that has

Stamenka takes in the scenery

put together the new Bansko town and piste map “by hand”. Again launching here online in a few days.

I am very grateful for how a winter view picture I took from the Plato caught her eye.

I had not given it a second thought.

A lesson learnt how a second opinion can achieve a better result. I’ve allowed myself a few moments of being just a little pleased that this one made it to the calendar front cover.


Summer and Autumn in the Pirin

Looking back at the summer photos, they remind me of the many memorable hiking days. Some of these memories were on the free hiking tours in August. But others, more recently, in late October and early November when the fine weather obliged,  sealing the October and November pages pictures.

But I got rather lucky for the summer photographs.

Firstly, it is with great gratitude that professional photographer friend , Colin Samuels,  came over to Bansko. He joined me in hiking, and mountain biking, in the early summer.

Colin is an American national, living in high up in the French Alps, and his photos grace the top outdoor mountain publications around the world.

Colin’s visit was, is part, a masterclass for me. I learnt how a specialist outdoor photographer works. How he looks for certain elements to make a picture. For lines and light — and also some tips on using my Nikon. Whilst I am a firm believer that reading guides and instructions is one of the key lessons in life, I have to confess I had not spent as much time practicing what I preach.

Our trip took us from the Balkan range, Rila and Pirin. My reward for organising his trip were his gift to me of some of his very best Pirin pictures. Some of these are now published exclusively for use in the Bansko 2013 calendar. This comprises of 100% original photographs from 2012 — no stock images this year!


A hint of glamour

Colin and I hiked with Stamenka on some days. She loves the mountains and also loves hiking in a bikini.

Yes, absolutely true.

This is how we got Junes’s very special shot. The like of which I have never seen.  At the time we thought nothing of it; but now that summer is long gone it, it’s the icing on the cake and just one of the summer pictures that I hope will tempt more people to come to Bansko outside the ski season as well as in it.

Bansko 2013 calendar (free for early bookings)

Whilst Stamenka hikes in her bikini, rest assured this is a 100% family friendly calendar.  Whilst you must be the judge, I think we have a unique calendar of photographs.  The aim was for them to not just capture the essence of the Pirin magic, but also offer a feeling of “the moment”.  Both visitors and residents alike often stop and pause for a while. A few seconds to capture a “moment” fully immersed  in this most special of landscapes.

So, from silky smooth evening light and early morning soft light, to snowboarders, skiers and hikers — this calendar is for the love of the mountains.


Model photo shoot 

I must add that the featured photograph you see nearly made it in. This was from a model photoshoot with Vanya Peneva (Miss Bulgaria 2011). The pictures are great — but the brief was wrong — and they do not quite deliver for the calendar what the Pirin is all about for so many winter sports, and mountain, enthusiasts.

Nonetheless, she is very easy on the eye and, well, you can be the judge…

…view more this photo shoot taken in March on the Android App. Typing “Bansko” in Google Play store will find the app. (also available in itunes for apple).


Classic winter Pirin scenes

But let us not forget the winter, and one of my very favourite pictures.  This picture very kindly donated by Lidya, also a blogger of a ski resort in the Ukraine.

Her picture composes a tree in the foreground, windswept snow and clouds. The sky and the great snow in a photograph that captures a fun day on the mountain.

Photo courtesy of Lidya (Ukraine)

The wonderful snow of the last season means that the other winter shots were taken by my Nikon 5100. Most pictures were shot with a prime 1.4 manual focus 50mm lens. This set up delivers the high quality I really like. This compact DSLR set up, is relatively portable and ensures that battery life is never a problem.


Tips of the day

  • Easyjet fly from Stanstead (London UK) to Sofia.  now booking.
  • Snow karting comes to Bansko from FDKARTING (in Blagoevgrad).
  • Read, my ski packages FAQ’s  giving you what you want, when you want it.


Bansko Events

  • Truffle tribute time at the Premier Luxury Mountain Resort Joro Ivanov (President of Euro-Toques Bulgaria and Vice President of Euro-Toques International) will head up the chefs on Friday 30/11 and Saturday 1/12
  • Mountain Film Festival: November 21st to 25th
  • Birdie Hunt Golf  Tournament that will take place on Saturday November 24th…

    Start: 10.30, shotgun start
    Course: 13 holes of the Ian Woosnam course
    Format: Net Strokeplay, winner is the golfer with most birdies on 13 holes!
    Entry Fee: 35 leva for guests. Discount for Members
    Prizes: 5 leva of the entry fee of each player goes for the prize!

    If you liked this article, then please share it. Your comments below are welcome.






About the author

I enjoy tech, apps, entrepreneurship, podcasting and collaboration with others. I love travelling as well as skiing, hiking, MTB, paragliding, cooking and good food.

3 Responses to “Bansko calendar 2013, by hand”

  1. Peter Mayne says:

    Is the calendar for sale. If so how do I buy one.
    Many thanks,
    Peter Mayne

    • Lance says:

      Hi Peter,

      Thank you for your question. At this stage we are waiting for the first print run. If it is of the quality specified then we hope it will be. But at the moment, it is a free calendar for Bansko Blog ski package customers for early bookings only.

  2. Lance Nelson says:

    UPDATE: The Bansko calendar 2013 is still free for all ski hire / lessons / lift pass bookings made here on Bansko Blog (online). Feedback has been great. high quality, page per month.

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