What's New in April 2014
LARGE Panoramas - Suitable for enormous prints metres wide.
These images come from one trip down to the ever popular Wilsons Promontory earlier in the year. I had very limited time and essentially one specific goal in mind which was to finally obtain a decent shot of Sealers Cove despite having hiked in there many times before over the years.
The very last time I'd managed to set foot on that beautiful beach was a year ago. At the time the track in was closed due to flooding and I'd been forced to get there via a circuitous route only to find myself out of time and out of the energy required to find a nice vantage point. I swore I'd be back.
Fast forward to this year and I was indeed back. Not only was the track now open, but I had some tricks up my sleeve. Determined not to be so knackered from lugging heavy gear that I missed the light I did two things. Firstly I ditched everything except my weighty camera equipment, some snack food, and waterproofs leaving things like tent and sleeping bag, stove, spare water and so on behind. Secondly I then left just after mid-night and walked through the night to get there, obtaining the "Sealers Cove Awakens" shot in glorious dawn light with the whole beach to myself.
Still reasonably fresh I then scouted my next shot using knowledge gained from previous trips. I won't go into details, but let's just say that the high vantage point is very inaccessible and required some consider effort and guesswork. I spent most of the day on it but returned to the beach again exhausted, covered in small scratches but with a big smile on my face knowing I'd finally nailed a shot I'd been working on for years.
Back down at the beach I found two things, the pretty little river I'd merrily jumped across earlier had swollen and hordes of people had arrived as if from nowhere. Having had the park to myself I was a little taken-a-back. There must have been over 30 or 40 of them, setting up tents, cooking, resting and talking animatedly in the way that hikers do when released from the burden of a day's walk under the weight of a heavy pack. It all looked rather wonderful, but with no overnight gear and the light now fading I needed to be heading out.
Somewhat self-consciously I stripped down to my jocks, held my precious camera gear as high as I could and waded into the stream. As soon as I commenced my feet betrayed me and I immediately plunged into the chilly water up to my waist, letting out the kind of aggrieved yelp you would expect from a man who's neither regions are suddenly doused in icy liquid. Naturally another band of young trekkers choose that exact moment to turn up, witness my unseemly writhing's, and take it upon themselves to offer advice. "Three inches to your left looks good", "look out for that slippery rock", "dude, do always wear bright red jocks?". (Hey, there were cheap and came in a pack of three).
Eventually I was out and on my way, though with no way to dry off properly and a long uphill nocturnal walk ahead of me things weren't looking that good. By the time I'd reached what I figured was half-way I was overcome by fatigue and lay down for a little nap, but the night was too cold for sleeping so I pushed on. I kept telling myself that there are fit young people who jog this track just for the exercise, so surely I can manage it in 24 hours. However, as our little boy is often heard to say, I'd had a big day. The car-park seemed a spooky place when I arrived, but the prospect of dry clothes and sugary food was very welcome.
The next couple of days I shot the Whiskey Bay photo and picked up the St. Kilda Pier shot on my way home. The pier is obviously a well-documented scene, quite popular with wedding photographers. Having failed to get the shot a couple of times before, mainly due to the volume of people even at dawn, I was happy with the outcome. I drove home again, knowing I had some good shots in the bag, always a grand feeling. Not sure where I'll be heading next.