Yesterday morning there wasn’t really a sunrise. Obviously the sun rose, but it was hidden behind a lot of cloud, and sideways rain. So this morning I decided to drive to Castleton, and go up Mam Tor for the sunrise.
My first problem, when I got in the car and set the sat nav up was that I realised that I’d misremembered how long it would take me to drive there. For some reason, I’d thought it would take me 26 minutes (weirdly specific), but actually it was 47. So that pretty much meant that I wouldn’t be at the top or the tor when the sun peaked over the horizon.
My second problem happened when I got there. You have to drive up the road in the image above to get to the top and park. I could see a fair few photographers (I assumed!) lined up on the ridge, and I was suprised by how many there were. However, I wasn’t prepared for how many people would be stood at the top of the tor! There is a car park there and it was full, as were the laybys nearest the car park. So this, teamed with the fact I was already running late meant I decided I was going to walk to the pass, rather than up the tor.
There were a fair few people out overlooking the pass, but far fewer than were up the tor; so I’ll have to do the tor another day. I’m assuming it was so busy because it was “the first sunrise of the new year”. Rather than it’s just always that busy, however I may be wrong!
Happy new year! This year I’m going to focus on; bracketing / bending exposures, focus stacking and the use of flashes. To get started with this I had a little play with a house plant and my flash guns this afternoon.
After a spell of rainy weather, today was clear. So we decided to go out into the Peak District. After a bit of umming and aaahing about where to go, I settled on Padley Gorge because it is close and I suspected we’d still be able to get parked despite setting off a bit later than usual.
It was a bit chilly in the breeze, but quite a nice day out. We followed a circular from Alltrails that took us down into the gorge before going up to Surprise View and across Owler Tor and back to the car (see below).
Despite the heavy rain of the last couple of days the paths were more or less clear, with just some really muddy small sections that could be stepped over / around.
This is probably going to be the last walk of the year, as the weather forecast once again is not great after today until Monday; wherein I’m trying to decide if to go up Mam Tor, or go around the Ladybower areas.
The third day was the day I was most excited about; lots of waterfalls! We had to getup pretty early as we had a lot further to drive on this day, and it was still pitch black as we went to our first stop; the lava centre.
The first waterfall we went to was Seljalandsfoss. The group pretty much ran around it, I don’t think I’ve ever had to take photos so fast before. This is also when I found out that my tripod head was well and truly broken.
The day before everyone else had gone into the secret lagoon, and I’d opted to stay out and edit photos. It was whilst I was here that I noticed that my tripod head wouldn’t lock into place, so I asked the coach driver of he had a screwdriver or something I could use to try and fix it. He did, and I thought I had, however when it came to trying to lock the head in place at the waterfall I realised that I had, in fact, not fixed it at all.
We went from this waterfall to the black sand beaches at Vik. The sun was rising at the point and the light was just delicious.
The tide was pretty far in at the beach and the waves were ferocious.
Yesterday was a nice day; the skies were more or less clear and there was no rain forecast, so we went to Castleton, parked up (free to park on the road in the week if it’s not a bank holiday!) and walked up Cave Dale
I’d set off wearing far too many layers; hat, scarf, gloves, coat, fleecey jumper… And clearly that was all unnecessary and came off half way up!
It was nice and quiet whilst we were there and we were trying to follow a route, but we ended up slightly off-piste. When we were back in Castleton we stopped in a café and had sandwiches and a drink before coming home.
On the second day of Iceland; we did the Golden Circle tour which is something I’ve done before.
The last time I went to Gullfoss you couldn’t walk down to the bottom, so it was cool that this was open this time! It was pretty busy, you could tell that this was the tourist hotspot compared to the places we’d been the day before.
I somehow managed to get myself a free trip to Iceland… The downside? It was a school trip!
On the first day we saw some hot springs, the gap between the tectonic plates and some hot mud pools.
The weather on this first day was awesome; which was good because my big coat was in the hold luggage which was in the coaches hold! We all met up at school at 330 in the morning, and didn’t get to the guest house until tea time, so it was a super long first day.
Way back in August I went to Grindelwald, Switzerland. The weather was super hot and sunny the entire time we were there; which was great apart from the fact all of the waterfalls had dried up.
Unfortunatly this happened such a long time again I no longer know what happened on what day, so instead you are just going to get a photo dump of mainly cows and mountains.
I do know that the view from the hotel was epic, and that I’ve never been on as many gondelas in my life.
The public transport in Switzerland is on point, and as someone who gets really nervous around getting on trains this was super! I’d paid extra to go first class on the journey to and from the airport and this was awesome too.
Grindelwald itself was nice; we were there right at the very end of August so at the end of the season and it wasn’t too busy. I bet it gets really busy there though, as everything is so easily accessible by train or gondela.