Carding Mill Valley in Shropshire is run by the National trust. The Shropshire hills are lovely for walkers. Beautiful heather clad rolling hills. When you arrive you park by the stream.
The path up the valley is rocky so be careful walking. The walk follows the stream up the valley. As you walk up you will see the small but pretty Lightspout waterfall. It’s a lovely place to take a break. Just be a little careful climbing down to it. There are plenty of big rocks to sit and have a drink from your flask.
From the waterfall you can carry on walking up the valley taking a route to the right or to the left. Either way will take you to the hill tops. There is a big circular route to follow. The walking is fairly easy though obviously you are climbing up.
On a good day the scenery is amazing as you follow the route along the top of the hills. It is worth stopping a couple of times to take in the views.
As you follow the path round it will take you back to the valley past the waterfall. When you get back to the valley there is a cafe waiting for you. Something I like to take advantage of.
The main photo shows the stream that you follow up the valley. I set the camera to f22 to give a large depth of field. You must get as much in focus as possible on a shot like this. Having something to lead the eye and give depth to an image. The stream does this perfectly.
Pick a lovely day and you will have great experience. Go get some great images.
It is the time of year that I get planning for future photography trips. The first item on the agenda is to sort the clothing for the winter. When you are out in the landscape you need to be prepared.
My walking boots are solid and waterproof so good for winter. Make sure your boots have enough room for 2 pairs of socks, a thin layer next to skin. A thick pair of wool is the best for the thick outer pair. I have purchased some heavy weight walking trousers. When you are stood about setting up camera equipment or waiting for the light, you can get very cold. When very cold a pair of thermal long johns will be needed as well. Stood about in freezing weather conditions is not about fashion.
Layers are what you need up top so start with a thermal vest. A good long sleeved shirt. On top of this should be a fleece. For the outer layer is a good insulated coat. Though I have a good waterproof coat I am adding an insulated down jacket. You do need to retain heat as much as possible.
Hats and gloves are a necessity as well. Most of your body heat is lost through your head, keep it covered. You need to keep the hands warm to work the camera.
Extra survival equipment is always kept in my photography rucksack which has been talked about previously.
I am in the early stages of planning a major photography trip for next year. The trip will be in April next year. My plan is to do what is called the Scotland 500, starting and finishing at Inverness. The plan is to buy a camper van before this trip as wild camping is possible in the area. The route could change a bit by April but I will fill you in on details as plans progress.
I had a lovely afternoon at Clumber Park in Nottinghamshire. It’s a place which I am familiar having visited many times over the years. It is run by the national trust so does cost to get in unless like me you are a member. I do visit many national trust places over a year so it is worth joining. I would encourage anyone to join.
This particular afternoon was sunny with light clouds and plenty of blue
sky. I decided to walk round the lake. It is an easy walk of about 3 miles and the paths are good and well laid out. The scenery changes a lot due to a mixture of mature woodland and open parkland. The beautiful bridge here is one that you walk over on the route. With the light as beautiful as it was it gave a wonderful mirror image of the bridge in the lake.
There is plenty of wildlife to photograph as you walk round the lake. As a result I did stop a couple of times to put the long lens on and photograph a few birds.
My main aim was to return to the visitor centre before sunset. I wanted to capture the sun setting on the lake. The best laid plans of mice and men!! When I got back I took a few shots as the sun was getting low on the lake. I quickly realized that I was too low down, the sun was setting behind the trees.
I quickly jumped into the car and drove up to the main entrance. It is up on high ground looking down an avenue of trees, not quite the lake I would have liked but a spectacular fiery sky.
The Cauldron Falls at West Burton in Wensleydale, North Yorkshire are very easy to reach. You drive into a small village and park by the green. Be sensible and thoughtful with your parking. North Yorkshire has an abundance of impressive waterfalls and you would need a good holiday here to get round them all.
The falls are part of the Walden Beck which flows down to the River Ure near Aysgarth.
To get to the falls just walk down through the village along a short path and you reach the falls.
You reach an old stone bridge first. If the water isn’t flowing too heavy and you are careful you can get down to water level to photograph. It is lovely setting with the waterfall stepped down. There is a narrow ledge to put the tripod on if you like long exposures. It is always my preference with water and worth the time it takes. It is an idyllic setting so there should be no rush to leave.
Just past the bridge is the Cauldron waterfall, it isn’t big but is quite impressive and picturesque.
As always with all waterfalls they are better after some rain. You can get round the back of the fall if the flow isn’t too heavy and you proceed with care.
If you follow the road down next to Walden Beck there a plenty of spots to stop and photograph.
For the technical among you I am looking at getting a external mic for my Nikon to add some short videos to the blog. I will add how I go with this in the future. From what I have read the internal mics are just not up to the job. As a result I am at the moment I am studying reviews and studying the technical details of what is required.
On a lovely autumn day I decided to do some walking at Keld in Swaledale. When I say walking I mean it fits around the photography. I did some research and came up with a lovely walk taking in a few waterfalls. This area of Swaledale has many to choose from. The walk that I chose is here. I didn’t take in the last falls Kisdon. The photography takes a lot longer than the 10 mins they allow at each fall. I will visit this another day.
The first falls that I visited was Hoggarth’s leap. A lovely multi tiered waterfall.
It has a large pool in front of it. It is a little limited on where you can photograph from. Definitely worth a visit though. From here I walked down to Catrake falls. These falls are spectacular but not very good for photography. You cannot get to the bottom of them and the photographs from the top are too limited. Maybe there is a different route here and I will look into it for when I go back.
I will move onto the last part of my walk which is East Gill force. I have done this for reason. You will find out why very soon. The image that I have chosen is where the beck joins the river Swale. It is a beautiful spot which is framed by trees. I have added two walking poles to my kit and were much needed walking down the path to this fall. I have found the walking poles an invaluable part of my kit. After the accident I had a while ago they will remain part of my kit.
Visiting Wain Wath Force was the middle section of the walk. The reason for leaving until the end was that I wanted to leave the image to make it the largest image. It is such well known waterfall. The water flow was quite small. It is set in such spectacular scenery. It is a must if you are in this area of the country. I love the colors of the autumn trees. I have used a 30 second exposure at f22 on the shot to get the smooth look to the water.
Go out into the countryside and see a wonderful world. Go photograph it.
Back for another visit to do some walking in Padley gorge in the Peak district. Just a place I love to visit. Any time of year it is just beautiful. The times that I love best is when the sun is shining through. When the sun shines it gives a beautiful dappled light effect.
It is quite a dark place as there are a lot of trees blocking out the sun. When the sun comes out it just turns magical. As it is quite dark I was carrying my tripod with me. It is needed if you want high quality images.
When I park at the road side I usually walk down the left bank looking downstream. On the way back I cross over a bridge and walk back up the right bank of the stream. It just gives a different of the terrain.
As I walked down Padley gorge I spotted this scene. I set up the tripod and fitted the camera. I try always to use 100 iso for the best quality images.
The technical details for those interested are the camera was set to f22 with a shutter speed of 1.5 seconds. The focus was on the rocks on the nearest part of the falls. There is good focus through the image.
Dappled sunlight gives a great depth to an image. It gives an image a 3 dimensional effect. The effects and colors on the water vary greatly. The flow of the stream through the image leads your eye through the image.
What matters most with any image is that it holds your interest. This has that magical feel of the light that I saw on the day.
There are many beautiful parts of the Peak district. I believe That Padley gorge is one of the best. Go visit and take some beautiful images.
After a few days at the Lizard I moved on and called at St. Michaels Mount in Cornwall. It is a place called Marazion which is close to Penzance. St. Michaels Mount is in Mounts bay and is a small tidal island. There are 43 of these islands around the UK coast.
It is a very busy place with many tourists. When the tide is out there is a constant stream of people walking across the causeway. Trying to get good photographs is not easy. I went later in the day though it was cloudy the sun was shining behind the clouds. Not a great day day for photography.
The tide was out so the bit of sun that was shining came through and was glistening on the sands. Taking a low viewpoint allowed me to pick up texture of the sands. The tide line leads the eye through the image and leads you to the castle. Taking a low viewpoint also hid many people walking along the causeway.
I did use my 2 stop graduated neutral density filter to pick up more details in the clouds. This is rapidly becoming my favorite filter. A couple more variations of this filter will be added to my collection shortly.
I have deliberately warmed up the image in Lightroom. I believe that it suited the image better. It gives the image an almost monochrome feel.
Hope you like the image. Go out and create some images yourself.
A little while ago I went for a walk at Bolton abbey. It is a stunningly beautiful part of the Yorkshire dales. It’s a few miles past Ilkley which is regarded as the gateway to the dales.
I park in the top car park near the village. There is a car park near the river where there is a lovely cafe. The reason for parking a little away is that it gives me a lovely long walk. It goes down through a field. You can walk round the abbey from here.
If you want a good walk then cross the river using the wooden bridge or via the stepping stones. The stepping stones are not the best idea when carrying fancy camera gear.
There is a path which follows the river. As you get into the wooded area it does get a bit steep so you do need some fitness to walk it.
After about a mile you reach a wooden bridge which takes you back over the river. This leads you to the cafe. While you are here stop and have a refreshment break.
From this side of the river you can follow the path. You will walk through the woodland to the Strid. The Strid is a powerful flow of water. The river is forced through a narrow section of rocks. Most of all be wary, it is very dangerous.
You will find photo opportunities all along the walk. Because it is such a lovely destination it does get busy. With a little patience you will get some people free photo’s.
Getting back to the car park is just retracing your steps.
Go out, enjoy our world and take some lovely photo’s.
One lovely day I took a drive to photograph Janets Foss, Malham, Yorkshire. Malham is a rather lovely village in the Yorkshire dales. You can park either in the village or drive up towards Goredale scar and park at the side of the road. Wherever you choose to park, there is a path to follow close to Goredale beck. From either way you will reach Janets Foss.
Foss is used in the UK to mean force but is a Nordic word meaning waterfall. Guess this comes from the times we were overrun by the Vikings.
It is a steady walk but I would recommend a good pair of walking boots. When you reach the waterfall there are limited places to view from. You get more viewpoints if take the footwear off and go paddling. Ok if you don’t mind very cold water. On a busy day it can be difficult to get a people free photograph. Choose a quiet time if possible. As always with waterfalls it is best to go after rain so you have a good flow of water. It is definitely worth a visit if you are in the area. It is not too far a walk to Goredale scar from here.
The image itself I would have preferred to be slightly different but will go back at a quieter time to get it just as I want. I prefer a longer exposure than I could get this day. The light was difficult as it was quite contrasty. There was dappled sunlight coming through the trees. I did a little work on it Lightroom to get detail in the shadows. The exposure was 1.5 seconds at f22. Obviously the camera was on the travel tripod and weighted by my camera bag.
Go out and photograph, there is beautiful world out there.
After driving for a hour along the motorway I pulled into the country park at Hessle. There is a short walk from here from where you can view the Humber bridge. The Humber bridge is on the outskirts of Hull in Yorkshire. When it first opened in 1981 it was the longest single span suspension bridge in the world. I started my working life out as an engineer so do love beautiful structures. I find the simplicity of this structure very elegant.
When you go to places like this there limited places that you can shoot. Chances are that most shots have been been done over the years. Coming up with something new is not always easy. The best way is to choose a day when you will get some interesting light. Here a deep blue sky with lovely cloud formations gives a little drama to the image. You could go at sunset or at night to make the shot different. Definitely don’t go for one of those flat grey days.
A graduated nd filter was used to bring out detail in the sky. It would have been nice to have had a wider lens than the 24mm that I was using. I would have got a little more in the frame but as I was limited I chose this composition. I wanted to show some of the shoreline detail in the image. The reflection of the bridge shows in the water and creates subtle colors changes. I wanted the bridge to fill as much of the frame as possible and make it look dynamic. It would be easy to lose the character of the bridge by photographing it from a more straight on view point.