Tag Archives: valley

Iceland – Day 5

“Grjótárhnjúkur” - North Iceland

“Heiðarfall” – North Iceland

“Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us, or we find it not.” 
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

On a day that started out dull, and blanketed in low cloud and with little promise of sights to photograph, we set out on the still icy road which would lead us to a stop at Goðafoss, a much photographed waterfall just off the main highway, a lovely lunch in the city of Akureyri, and finally, our overnight stay at a guesthouse in Svinvatn, a small interior lake.

As we approached Goðafoss, the sky began to brighten, but a layer of cloud still blocked the sun, but made for good conditions to photograph the waterfall, post to follow at a later date.

With the highlight of our day completed, we headed out of Akureyri, the second largest city in Iceland, following a long valley through the mountain range that rises on the western edge of the Eyjafjörður fjord.

With the sky just slightly overcast, the drive through the valley was lovely, and yielded a few ‘decent’ photos. I the distance, we could see a mountain peak, a bit hazy in the distance, lit up by the sun. We kept watching, as the peak began to come into sharper view, snow whipping from its snow covered summit.

We pulled over along the road to make a few photos of this interesting vista before us. Then, suddenly, magic happened. As I stood ready to make a photo, the clouds overhead changed the light, ever so slightly and bathed the valley before me in a wonderful golden hue and the world before me was like a scene from a dream, then it was gone again. But, I was able to capture that one brief moment as a photo I will treasure for a long time. The long valley, with the snowy mountain. A miracle of light and timing.

So, a ho hum day, became a day of sheer joy. That seems to be the nature of Iceland, you always have to be prepared for something new and wonderful, despite icy roads and gray skies.

What an incredible change from yesterday’s icy drive.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 145 mm
1/320 sec, f/9.0 ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

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“Rock Garden Waterfall” – Royal Botanical Gardens, Burlington

“Rock Garden Waterfall” - Royal Botanical Gardens, Burlingto

“A garden should make you feel you’ve entered privileged space — a place not just set apart but reverberant — and it seems to me that, to achieve this, the gardener must put some kind of twist on the existing landscape, turn its prose into something nearer poetry.”
― Michael Pollan

A change of pace from all my recent flower and butterfly photos, though if you look closely, there are still flowers present. Can you find them?

I did set out to photograph flowers this day and have plenty to share at a later date, but I do like a good waterfall and the serenity small cascades like this create for me, even knowing it is man made. I used a slow shutter at 1/10 of a second to slightly blur the movement and had to go hand-held because I did not want to carry a tripod all day. That did pose a challenge because it was very bright and I had to shoot at f/32 to keep the water from being blown out.

This stepped cascade can be found at the rock gardens, which are part of the Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington, Ontario. The rock garden is one of several gardens within this large complex of garden exhibits and is nestled in the base of a valley, forming a bit of a bowl. Much of the stone is native limestone and some material has been moved into place to create a garden with large limestone boulders and many stepped paths which run up and down the hillside. I enjoyed the inclusion of many native plant species, which those who are not hiking the backwoods trails would never experience otherwise. Including Herb Robert (Geranium robertianum), which are the small pink flowers visible near the base of the higher cascade. They are a native plant and are members of the geranium family. The crushed leaves can be used as a mosquito repellant, handy at this time of year).

The waterfall pictured here, feeds into some smaller stepped cascades and eventually winds through the lower gardens as a meandering creek which flows beneath bridges and around some wonderful large trees.

At this time of year, the garden also features some exquisite blooming dogwoods, which I have a real attraction to (more photos of those to come).

If you happen to be in the Burlington area and like plants, I would highly recommend this as a destination, but plan on a day, since it is a large complex that spreads over several properties.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD
 @ 70 mm
1/10 sec, f/32.0, ISO 500

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Low Cloud at Tunnel View” – Yosemite National Park

Low Cloud at Tunnel View - Yosemeite National Park

“Did you not look upon the world this morning and imagine it as the boy might see it? And did you not recognize the mist and the dew and the birdsong as elements not of a place or a time but of a spirit? And did you not envy the boy his spirit? ” – Jamie O’Neill

Another image from my 2013 visit to one of my ‘sacred places’. The experience of spring in Yosemite, especially after a storm is something surreal. The mists twist and writhe among the peaks like something living. Scenes are fleeting, never to be repeated again. I stand in awe, at the movement and the changes in light, every moment a new frame in an endless play of wonders.

This image was made from the Tunnel View area and looks to a group of granite cliffs, just beside Bridalveil Falls. It looked to me like a chinese painting. And then it was gone again, lost in the mist, till new new scene was ready to play out.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @200 mm
1/200 sec, f/4.5, ISO 200

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Two Stones in Ice” – Seaton Trail

“Two Stones in Ice” - Seaton Trail

“Sense how
Even the smooth stones ache
With stories of their own
In the shuddering light of day.”
― Scott Hastie

Emerging from their icy bondage, two stones, or is it three, rest upon their captor, as ice water flows over them.

What’s the story of these stones? They sit alone, apart from others. Where did they come from? The pure ice they rest in fills a narrow but deep, steep walled, valley that flows into the Duffins Creek valley. Because of this, the hiking trail follows the valley rim and diverts far from the creek.

I looked into the valley, and hearing the sound of numerous cascades, decided to climb into the valley to photograph them. At the base of the valley, I found not just the small cascades which I heard, but a narrow frozen creek of bright white, with these rock embedded in it. It was not what I was looking, but I’m glad I entered the valley or I would not have found this beautiful scene.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200 mm f/2.8 @ 190 mm
1/125 sec, f/5.6, ISO 250

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
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“Grazing – Reprise”

“Grazing - Reprise” - Fort Stewart, Ontario

It’s a very rare occasion where you can return to the location where you made a good photo and try to make it better, especially a landscape photo.

A few years ago I made a photo of a horse grazing in this same spot. That photo has been very popular and was featured in the North Hastings “Destinations” guide. A local tourist publication. I even sold a few larger prints of it.

During a recent trip back to the Bancroft/Fort Stewart area, I drove past the same field and the horses were back out grazing. What was different, this time, was the wonderful fall colours in the valley behind them. The previous photo featured muted tones and layers of dark green and gray, whereas this scene shows the green-yellow colours of early fall transition. What I call a ‘fruit salad’ forest. The light this day was glorious and warm and nicely shows off all the layers and structures behind the horse as well as the tree and rock pile at the centre of the composition. It is also a calming scene. The horse is in no hurry, is very relaxed, not even paying attention to me making the photo, and the sky is a soft blue.

Nikon D300
Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 @ 80mm
1/125 sec @ f/5.6 +1.33, ISO 250

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/EdLehming
or my website
http://www.edlehming.com