03 October 2014

Red sky at morning - a warning {Wellington landscape photography}

Nature sure has some wonderful unexpected tricks up her sleeve at times. When my dad was down for the weekend to help us celebrate our youngest's fifth birthday, I took the opportunity to drag him out on an early morning photo shoot. I'd told him the night before that it was touch and go as to whether we would go out - the weather forecast was looking pretty dire, but I said as long as it wasn't blowing an absolute gale or pelting with rain we would at least give it a go.

With that said, the alarm was set for 5am (gulp!) and off we went.

Pink skies over Wellington harbour from Ataturk Memorial

I also took the opportunity to go to a completely new spot - the Ataturk Memorial is on a headland at the last point before the harbour turns into the Cook Strait. From the road it's about a five minute uphill track climb, and not somewhere I'd be particularly keen to go on my own in the dark at that time of the morning.

There were hints of a sunrise already apparent in the sky when we arrived at the memorial, but boy was the wind blowing in some very strong gusts. Wasn't I lucky that I had an extra pair of hands helping keep the tripod steady for me?!

Pink skies in Wellington harbour towards eastbourne

Pink sky sunrise Wellington harbour

As the skies lightened, an incredible glow spread across the sky.

Pink sunrise from Ataturk Memorial

Pink and purple sunrise Ataturk

And towards the south, some fantastic cloud formations were highlighted - see the unusual flying saucer shaped cloud in the shot below.

Pink clouds at sunrise Ataturk Memorial

Stormy skies Ataturk memorial

Sunrise and pink skies Wellington south coast

Golden skies at Ataturk Memorial

After changing vantage points, we realised to our amazement that the Kaikoura ranges were also bathed in a pinky glow.

Kaikoura ranges sunrise from Wellington

Having a 300mm lens does come in handy at moments like these.

Kaikoura mountains sunrise glow from Wellington

Kaikoura mountain, fishing boat and Cook Strait

As we made our way back to the car the rain that had been threatening began to fall, and I thought that might have been us done for the day, but instead we found another bay just around the corner at Moa point that was as yet untouched by the squally showers, and I took the opportunity to fire off another few shots here - I'd like to come back and see a sunrise here - I think this little bay has some great potential for furture shots - particularly its shape and the rocks on the shoreline

Moa point at sunrise

Long exposure Moa Point Bay Wellington

Long exposure rocks at Moa Point

Moody skies long exposure Wellington

And then the rain we'd so successfully dodged earlier started agan in earnest and we had to hightail it back to the car to seek cover. We had one very excited five year old waiting patiently at home to open his presents so it was good timing to call it a day and head home.

It was lovely to have shared this moment with my dad when usually I only have myself to exclaim over the wonder of the moments I'm capturing. And it's him I have to thank for passing on his love of the outdoors and the thrill of capturing creation onto me.

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