Saturday, July 08, 2017

Newfoundland post #3

When last I left off, I was wrapping up my week in Twillingate. I had packed the car in preparation for a morning departure, had dinner with Trudy and started back to my place, telling her, "I'm cold and tired. Just going to chill for the evening". Couldn't do it. There was the most amazing sunset and I drove down through the town to where I could see across the harbour. Here's what I saw:

I took over 200 pictures. I'll let you know when I've gone through them and chosen my favourite! I was in front of someone's house when I shot this. Imagine looking out at a scene like this from your window. I wonder if the house is for sale...

On the way back to my place, I decided to do a "blue hour" shot from a hilltop overlooking Main Street.

So much for skipping the evening shoot and going to bed. 

I did get underway in the morning. I drove the loop through Musgrave Harbour and Cape Freels (because I could) before hitting Gambo and the TCH (Trans Canada Highway, to you folks from 'away') on the way to Trinity. The first couple of hours was boring, through forested road, even though I strayed onto back roads to see if there was anything interesting to see. 

By the way, my photo book from 2006 was called, "The Path of Least Potholes". You don't drive in your lane in Newfoundland. You follow the Path... and beware of the black potholes. They're black because you can't see the bottoms. They can eat your car.

I stopped in Deadman's Cove to shoot a salmon stream (not a great photo) and talk to a fisherman who bemoaned the fact that the cold weather this winter has delayed the return of the salmon. A little further was Lumsden, where I ventured as far as i could before dropping the car in a crater.

Could this be an ad for Subaru? A lot more attention to detail than you think went into this shot. And are those icebergs? You bet, and we're not done with them yet! 

Another Subaru shot.   

Moving right along, I came to a town called "Newtown" because Trudy told me not to miss it.

Iconic picture, or what? These towns all have their well maintained, beautiful churches. Newtown has new housing developments and is a gorgeous place.  Pretty far from the main stream, though.

It is a beautiful little town, though. 

Next stop, Trinity. When I got there, it was almost dark, and a thick fog had run in from the sea. I tried without success to get a shot. I also tried to buy groceries... Gas station/convenience store was all she wrote. Found the essentials, and bought more groceries the next day in Bonavista where they had a real store.

Despite taking my time the next morning settling in, the day turned into an eventful one. First I headed for Elliston and the Puffin Viewing Site.  Here are a few shots

Puffin Portrait. If you want to know how this puffin was enticed to come to the mainland side of the viewing area, you'll have to be a subscriber to my blog (click the newsletter icon at upper right. No spam will come your way). 

I managed some birds in flight. These guys are very fast and deceptive so I didn't get all the shots I wanted, so I'll have to go back again. 
By the way I met Hartmut and his wife Eva from Berlin. I had first met them in Twillingate. They're here for an extended stay and Hartmut takes brilliant pictures with his Sony equipment. After carrying 40 pounds of gear out to the puffin site and later on the boat I'm about to tell you about, I'm sorely tempted...

That's Hartmut in the green jacket and blue cap.  

The viewing area is about a 500m walk from the road. Some serious photographers are there: if you search for a puffin holding a lily in its beak, that lady on the blanket (a photographer from Toronto whose name escapes me) took it a few years ago. 

I also saw this cormorant fly by. There are tons of other birds there. 

The Puffins all took a lunch break around noon. I hung around for a couple more hours with just sporadic sightings, then took my leave. I drove to Bonavista to get some groceries, then I got sidetracked...

I chatted with Bob, who runs Discovery Sea Adventure Tours and decided to join his 5:00 pm tour. "Which of those big beautiful boats is yours, Bob?"

This one. A Zodiac with some serious horsepower on the back. I should have known better. Oh, well, it did say "Adventure"! I was sitting on that bench up front. There were 8 passengers on board, plus Bob.

They fitted us into thousand dollar floater suits. As if that would have made a difference if we tumbled into the sea five miles offshore. Why is it that when you give someone your camera, they always cut your feet off? 

Seriously. Captain Bob said, after we came in, "I didn't expect it to be that windy and rough...". Folks, 2m swells, at times we leapt off the crest of one wave onto the next but usually we came crashing down in the troughs, getting negative Gee's and spine crushing impact when we landed. Next time I'll choose a different seat. And take a smaller camera.

OK, I'm cheating. I did NOT shoot this picture from the boat.
Picture these seas only twice as high, with whitecaps. 

And you thought I was done with icebergs. Hah! He estimated this one was 70-80m high. You get a different perspective when you're up close and personal. 

And here's another perspective! Same iceberg 

My logic was flawed. I was thinking that we'd get close to some birds, so I wanted the long reach of the Tamron 600mm on the crop sensor body. But you CANNOT handhold that and track anything when you're on a moving Zodiak, even when you're out of the big waves. And i thought, for whales, my 70-200 on my D800 would be good. Next time I'll stick with that and put the little kit lens on the D5500. Besides, the D800/70-200 combo is more weatherproof. And it did get wet. Salt water, too!

I did get this shot of a puffin from the water. With the long lens. Not good enough for printing, but OK for posting online. I'll have to do some painting on it if I want to print it. 

The Bonavista lighthouse from sea. I'll shoot it again from land in a few days 

Parting Shot

Trinity, Newfoundland by moonlight.
I hope you enjoy these "Blue Hour" shots as much as I do. 

A few more days here in Trinity. Exploring landscapes and seascapes. Visiting the Lighthouse and "Dungeons" in Bonavista. Back to the Puffin site. Hopefully the Capelin will be rolling (look it up!) and I'll get some whale shots. Onward!

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