On our last dawn shoot in Iceland we woke up at 5am and looked outside... nothing but fog. We packed our bags and drove towards Jokulsarlon anyway, hoping that it would lift. As we headed there it surely did disappear, and there were clear skies overhead.
As the sun started to come up there was just one other photographer braving the cold with us. The top of the Vatnajokull icecap began to turn pink with the dawn light and the lagoon remained magically still.
It was one of the best moments of my Iceland trip.
Marianne and I have been travelling scotland for the last week or so. Our travels took us recently to the town of Ratagan which is a great area to explore the 5 sisters of kintail. This view was taken from the summit of Sgurr na Ciste-Diubhe. The view is of Ratagan at loch Duich below with the next 2 sisters along the ridge line in view. The clouds were flying in at our eye level which makes for a disorienting experience of motion.
In the far North West of Yunnan province lies the Kawakarpo Mountain range which straddles the border of Yunnan and Tibet. It also goes by the name of Kawagebo, Meilixueshan just to confuse matters. One of the reasons for its fame is that every clear dawn, the tips of the mountains catch the dawn light in breath taking fashion. This mountain, Miancimu is 700m shorter than Kawakarpo but probably more attractive to photograph. I took this shot about 200m down from the tourist platform where the view was just as good and free. -5 degrees outside made for alot of pushups and squats to keep warm while waiting. The image is 2 shots stitched in photoshop.
Part of our travels took us past this place in North Iceland on the Vatsnes Peninsula. We stayed over night at the youth hostel Osar so that we could have a dawn and dusk shoot of this location. Sadly the weather didnt fully cooperate with us but dawn did give a glimmer of light for about 10 minutes. Incidentally I happened to meet a contact from flickr travelling around iceland as well! The world is such a small place !
Marianne and I are leaving for a 3 month holiday as of tomorrow morning. As a farewell post, another image from last year's trip to Iceland. This was taken from a bridge over the Skeidararsandur region looking back toward the cloud shrouded mountain of Lomagnupur. I wonder if the scenery has changed since the recent eruptions!
When I get time on the road, I might try to upload some images as we go.
Our first day in this remarkable archipeligo saw us holed up inside sheltering from driving rain and wind. The weather cleared remarkably on the second day we were on the island roaming around Heimaey. in the evening, our primary objective was to seek those elusive puffins! We actually found a few which almost distracted me from looking out for sunset. I had planned a sunset shot as much as possible from using the application "photographer's ephemeris" which gave me an idea of where to be on the island in order for the sun t o be setting behind the three distant islands. This image looks heavily manipulated but in actual fact, the only significant things I've done to it are some sun flare removals and the rest is almost SOOC. Had to use 3 reverse and 2 stop hard edge GNDs to control the sky lighting for the effect.
This location is in the Northwest of Iceland - the Vatsnes Peninsula which is a short detour off the main ring road. There is a hostelling international hostel located very near to this location whose owner seems bemused that people like to photograph this rock. We stayed overnight in the Osar youth hostel which gave us one sunrise and one sunset only. There was no blazing sky but murky overcast skies instead. By sheer coincidence, I bumped into a flick contact (Jordan Lye) here and we photographed Hvitserkur together in the morning.
Legend has it that this volcanic rock once once a nocturnal troll who was caught by the rising sun and turned to stone. Given how slow the Icelandic sun rises and sets, I have to presume it must have been a slow troll destined to extinction !
The weather gods were not on our side during our last few days in Iceland. We made the 2nd trip to Landmannalaugar and the Veidivotn area but the wind was blowing up sandstorms making it difficult to even get out of the car door unless I parked it facing the right way! This was taken just off the road with a quick dash out of the car and back! looking south toward the Landmannalaugar mountains from the approach on the F208.
Most of the best shots from the evening shoot at Jokulsarlon one month ago was on the beach where icebergs were left stranded rather than at the lagoon itself. This one was taken well after sunset with lingering colours. We had realised our mistake by staying at the lagoon shooting into the sun too long when things were fantastic here at the beach.
I went shooting with Orvar that weekend and his version is here : [link] If you like Iceland - check out his photostream for inspiration as it certainly helped fuel my desire to travel directly across the world to this beautiful country
Jokulsarlon in Iceland's southeast is surely one of the must not miss locations in a country of superlative natural wonder. Most people visit the lagoon but I found it just as interesting on the beach where fragments of icebergs are washed up on the black sand. The wonderful thing about icelandic summers is how long the poost-sunset light goes on for. We thought we were too late after shooting at the lagoon but stayed here until just before dark. The movement is visible in the more distant icebergs still in the sea