Monthly Archives: October 2010

Homeward Bound

Seems weird saying that seeing as though it was only a month ago I moved to Newman, in the Pilbara. But i’ve had to head home for a brief stay for a mates wedding and all the rest. So instead of sitting at home doing nothing- as everyone else is working during the week. I thought I must pay my dear old friend a visit. That friend is of course my beloved Stirling Ranges! 🙂

Ridgeline

The reason for this trip is to get back into an area i’ve not visited for far, far too long. That is the Eastern Rudge. It’s basically the toughest walk you can do in WA. You walk a mere 22km, but over the only real mountains we have. It’s basically bush bashing- no well groomed track for us, and you sleep under the stars, or if you want some comfort you make base in one of the couple of caves found along the top of the ridge. It’s an incredible way to spend a night! 🙂

The Arrows

So I thought i’d dig through some ancient images, I think these were even taken on point and shoot camera’s, so apologies for the complete lack of quality with these haha. There will hopefully be better images to come from this trip! They give you some idea about the area anyway.

Bluff Knoll

I’ll also be trying to put technology to the test, and do a video tour of my cave tomorrow night. That will be posted to my facebook fanpage, so stay tuned into that tomorrow night and check it out!!

The Ridge

The top image is looking West along the ridge line, yes you do go up and over it all. The 2nd is over looking the section known as the Arrow’s, awesome terrain there, and the location of the only Penthouse you’ll find in the Stirlings- of course that is my cave! 😀

The 3rd is looking at Bluff Knoll, very different viewpoint from this side. And for those of you who have climbed the tourist track, that has nothing on this side. It is a daunting sight as you head to the base of it, knowing you still need to climb it haha. The last image is the length of the ride, Ellen’s Peak on the left, Pyongerup Peak, The Arrows, Isongerup Peak and then lastly Bluff Knoll on the right. Looking through these old pics sure has got me excited to get there! 🙂

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Hancock Tease

When it comes to the Pilbara, there’s really only one thing people expect. This has become evident when after my previous posts from the region, I got “where’s the waterfalls, where’s the gorges”. So, here they are! 😀

I love the top terrain, but in the gorges I definitely am in my prime. I love clambering, so gorges are perfect places for me. I’ve not had a chance to head down into the grade 6 area’s as every time i’ve been by myself with camera gear- not very often I listen to common sense but this is one lol.

kermits pool, hancock gorge, karijini, pilbara,

Kermits Trickle

More of Hancock gorge when I return from Perth, so to start is just the one image (and a nifty wordplay in the title lol) from the amazing Kermit’s Pool. I was once again privileged to have this place to myself for about 2-3 hours. Freeking awesome!! 🙂 Click on the thumbnail to see it in near full size goodness!

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Pilbara Storms

One thing I really look forward to here in the Pilbara, is the storms. I’ve always had a fascination with weather, I guess it goes hand in hand with photography, and hiking- which are my 2 main passions. But it’s just something I love all round. I’m forever on the BOM site, and various other weather sites, always tune into the Foxtel weather channel in the morning, and usually throughout the day to. I’m a nerd haha. Well when it comes to weather anyway.

So many times i’ve heard about the Pilbara Storms, but yet to experience it for myself. In the last week however, she decided to give me a small taste. So out I went, eyes wide open, big smile on my face. There are quite limited routes to go, literally North, South and one other road that kinda goes North North East. So that doesn’t make it easy to get into good positions, but I could still experience it anyway.

pilbara storm, newman, cloud

Pilbara lift off

The first image is of the storm building. I was heading North, when I checked the side mirror and saw this beast looming behind me. So I pulled over, and sprinted up the first hill I could find, not really getting the view I was after I followed a bush track for a couple of minutes before once again sprinting up a hill. This time I could capture the storm.

pilbara, storm, lightning, cloud

Pilbara UFO

 

From here I continued to go North, there were actually 2 storms, another one about a km behind me when I took the 1st image. They were heading towards each other so I thought they were going to collide- and hopefully go extreme!! This never eventuated, but I came across this scene anyway. This cool little valley had lightning going crazy at the end of it. Unfortunately once again, this ceased as soon as I set up lol. But then this wicked little cloud formed, and in this particular shot- was rimmed entirely by some in cloud lightning. It’s given that definition to it, and separated it from the rest of the cloud.

pilbara storm, sunset, newman, clouds

Pilbara Blues

The last image here is from earlier this week. More storms fired up in the arvo- so out I went again. This time I headed South, before spotting a small hill just off the road. I found some tracks that headed towards it, and then actually went right up the side as well. So into 4wd I went, and up the hill I go. Saved me a run on this day which was good, running through spinifex with camera gear isn’t exactly my thought of fun haha.

There was a big cloud just out of frame of this image, and as a result the cloud behind was tinged with the most amazing blue. The images I took of it are going to be one’s I think i’ll forever be asked if it was the colours I saw, and if I did any adjustments in post processing. That I can confirm is a definite no- these clouds were freeking incredible! 🙂

It’s been a weird week for me. It honestly feels like a holiday, despite working full time. So as most of my trips last 2-3 weeks, it felt all week like i’d be heading home soon, back to the people I care about, and back to my normal life. So it’s now hitting home that I am here for good- here for a while anyway. Ready to explore the depths of the Pilbara as I go. And I can’t wait! 😀

Make sure you open up the images to the large size as the wordpress compressions play around a bit with the smaller images.

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Karijini National Park

You can’t get enough of this place, well I hope you guys can’t- as there’ll be plenty of photographs coming from me from this remarkable location. I’ve been in the Pilbara 2 weeks, and been there twice haha. Quieter weekend for me this weekend to catch up on things, and a bit of socializing which will actually be good! I’ve not stopped since I got here really, so about time to stop for an evening.

Joffre Gorge Sunrise

Joffre Gorge

Last weekend I was re-born in the gorges, so there’s a few images to come from there. Then we’ve had some really really cool storms coming over. No big thumpers yet, they’ll come i’m sure. But colours like you’ll not believe! Some amazing sunsets to go with them, so i’ll have them up soon. Still plenty of images to try and catch up on- I think i’ve not touched my camera for a whole 3 days since i’ve been here lol, so this weekend is that catch up time!

Anyway this is another photo of Joffre Gorge. The contrasts in the area are huge, so I headed here early to get the glorious pre-dawn light. That way the light was a lot more balanced and I could get the photo I wanted. It was still an exposure of nearly 3min, so you can tell it was very dark, but yet the red cliffs still glowed in their magic way.

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Visiting Karijini as a photographer

While there are many fantastic locations in the Pilbara, well just about everywhere anyway, it is Karijini National Park that is the most well known, and probably beautiful location. In my posts from my first visit here, I referred to it as Magical Karijini. This is really the only way I can begin to describe it. It can’t be real, surely it’s not possible for a place like that to actually exist! But it does!

There are rolling hills, long valleys, vast plains, deep gorges, spectacular waterfalls and waterholes, the list goes on. I couldn’t wait to get back there, so of course on my first weekend I couldn’t resist the lure, I must get back there. So off I went.

Now my first visit, I still consider as being the step towards where I am today with my photography. At that time, I was still reluctant to call myself a photographer. I was someone who simply went around, snapped some pics and was lucky enough to snag the odd one that came up ok. Since then i’ve come a long way, my standard got to a level where I actually felt comfortable to call myself a photographer, and I hope I continue to keep going forward at the same rate in the future.

So on this trip, it was like my very first visit there. I saw everything differently. Everywhere I looked, I saw compositions, some that would work, others that wouldn’t. All of which I don’t think i’d have even thought about on my first trip.

I was just there this time on a scouting trip, I bet ya that there are a number of landscape photographers cursing me at that haha. But it was a quick trip in there, just to remind myself what was there- as I said, I was there with a brand new set of eyes. I only did a quick run down into Joffre Gorge to check that out, but apart from that I was walking the back country. Sourcing out more white gums and other classic Pilbara photographs.

Joffre Creek

Joffre Creek

My morning started at Joffre, as there were a couple of images I was chasing. The first here is my favorite from the day I think. It’s taken from the top of the falls, in the dry creek bed. I certainly wouldn’t want to try this shot when the falls are actually flowing! The reeds, the rocks pools and the fabulous colours in the rocks caught my eye. It was a tough exposure due to the extreme light contrasts you get in this area. But I was lucky to still get some relatively even light.

Eye of the beast

The second image here is actually one of the reasons i’m heading back again this weekend! Yeah, yeah…. more cursing haha. The water flow has obviously been limited over the past few months. This is not too pleasing on the natural eye as there is algae everywhere. However look at what it does to an image! The algae has given the water an amazing emerald green tinge, I was blown away by it when I got the images off the camera when I returned. So this time i’ll be decending into a few gorges to get some images with these unique conditions.

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Am i dreaming?

This is an image I took on my way up from Perth. After months of chaos, where it seemed nothing would go to plan haha, I needed a chill moment, some time to reflect on the big change I was embarking on, reflect on what I was leaving at home, and more importantly envisage what my now very near future held.

Sunset Dreaming

It was weird, i’d packed up and moved away before- when I worked down in the Stirling Ranges. That I had no problems with at all, yet this time there was moments where I quite honestly was scared about it all. Was I doing the right thing, was it going to go to plan etc etc. All stuff really out of my control, and as a usually easy going person- it was quite foreign to me.

So there I was, filled with a very foreign feeling of whether i’d succeed, and I found myself at this magical location. I can’t explain how quickly all those thoughts flowed out of me, and the familiar smile was all over my face despite there not being another soul to see it. Of course I was going to succeed, how could I have doubted myself! This, is what i’m here for! 😀

The Gascoyne, a wonderous expanse of dry river beds, occasional widespread floods, vast valleys, gorges and mountain ranges. I have not spent much time in this wonderful part of the land. But I am blown away by it’s beauty. Yet everything I had experienced there, paled in comparison to this day. Whether the emotions I was going through had anything to do with it, or if it was simply the beauty of raw nature, I really felt like I was dreaming. I couldn’t believe what my eyes were seeing.

Before I lose you all with my rambling, this magical place is known as The Granites, a short drive out of Mount Magnet, deep in Gascoyne country. The cliffs glow in the afternoon sun, they face West, so of course that is expected. However what I didn’t expect was that it will be long after the sun had set, that they put on their best show for me- with the rockface literally glowing for a good 30-40min after sunset. Recent rain has washed out sections creating the unique foreground I chose to go with.

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