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RANNOCH MOOR

This is the last of 4 bite-sized posts featuring locations in the general area of Glencoe. My apologies in advance as I’ve cheated slightly by naming the post “Rannoch Moor” but in truth it’s more about the areas of water lying either side of the A82 trunk route; but to call the post “Lochan na h-Achlaise and Loch Ba” would have been ridiculously long-winded.

Lochan na h-Achlaise and the Black Mount range | Argyll

Lochan na h-Achlaise and the Black Mount range | Argyll

Lochan na h-Achlaise lies to the west of the A82; when I last visited the area in February 2014 the lochan was completely frozen over but somehow less desolate looking than it does here, despite the blue sky. I do however like the foreground rock, the shape of which echoes the impressive Black Mount mountain range in the background.
10 sec @ f/16  ISO 125  Nikon D800e with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens @ 40mm

 

Lochan na h-Achlaise and Black Mount range | Argyll

Lochan na h-Achlaise and the Black Mount range | Argyll

I really like this infrared rendition of the scene although I could have done with the help of some natural light to separate the line of trees from the background; strangely enough that small gap in the trees (centre right) allowing sight of the loch behind is important in revealing depth in the photo. Try covering up the gap to see what I mean.
2 sec @ f/16  ISO 200  Nikon D3 with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens @ 50mm  Infrared

 

bogland grasses | Argyll

wet land grasses | Argyll

I was keen to capture texture in these bog grasses and believe this mono image does a better job than if left in colour.
0.6 sec @ f/16  ISO 100  Nikon D800e with 24mm f/3.5 Tilt + Shift lens

 

wet land grasses and the Black Mount range | Argyll

wet land grasses and the Black Mount range | Argyll

The same grasses within the context of an expansive view; two photographers standing by the loch side kindly moved aside for my shot, while their tripods were easily removed in post production.
0.5 sec @ f/16  ISO 100  Nikon D800e with 24mm f/3.5 Tilt + Shift lens

 

Loch Ba | Rannoch Moor | Argyll

Loch Ba | Rannoch Moor | Argyll

Meanwhile on the other side of the A82 is Loch Ba (an easy name to remember for once) and the desolation of Rannoch Moor stretching away to the east. This was a colourful blue sky, fluffy white cloud scenario but I think it renders better in mono; and what wonderful clouds!
5 sec @ f/16  ISO 100  Nikon D800e with 16-35mm f/4 lens @ 35mm

 

snow-storm | Loch Ba | Argyll

snow-storm | Loch Ba | Argyll

Within minutes of the earlier shot, blue sky and fluffy white clouds had been replaced by heavy, wet snowfall which made photography of this image almost impossible. The falling snow has softened the 6-second exposure to the point that it almost looks like an impressionist painting; very nice. The snow vanished as quickly.
6 sec @ f/16  ISO 400  Nikon D800e with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens @ 70mm

 

silver birches | by Loch Ba | Argyll

silver birches | Loch Ba | Argyll

Silver birch trees and clouds what better a subject for infrared capture?
1/50 sec @ f/11  ISO 200  Nikon D3 with 24-70mm f/2.8 lens @ 32mm  Infrared

 

Loch Ba | Rannoch Moor | Argyll

Loch Ba | Rannoch Moor | Argyll

In fading light, I discovered this interesting loch-side. The shape suggested a reversed question mark, leading the eye to the middle of the loch. Again it’s about those lovely distant clouds and tones of grey.
25 sec @ f/16  ISO 100  Nikon D800e with 16-35mm f/4 lens @ 22mm

 

upstream | River Orchy | Argyll

upstream | River Orchy | Argyll

The remaining shots are of the River Orchy; definitely not Rannoch Moor. I’m really chuffed with this first image justified by the curving edge of rock on the right (emphasised by the choice of lens) which guides the eye to the islands of rock in the middle of the river. Again the tones of grey are (IMHO) simply delightful.
30 sec @ f/16  ISO 200  Nikon D800e with 16-35mm f/4 lens @ 20mm

 

downstream | River Orchy | Argyll

downstream | River Orchy | Argyll

I was only able to shoot this image and the following with the aid of a colleague holding an umbrella to keep wet falling snow off the lens and filters otherwise it would have been quite impossible.
8 sec @ f/16  ISO 100  Nikon D800e with 16-35mm f/4 lens @ 22mm

 

downstream | River Orchy | Argyll

downstream | River Orchy | Argyll

Glen Orchy is another place I hope to revisit at some point. Finally, a couple of words from the wise; first these rocks are extremely dangerous to traverse and secondly do remember to deploy your tripod carefully before mounting camera and lens!
5 sec @ f/16  ISO 100  Nikon D800e with 16-35mm f/4 lens @ 20mm

 

  • Tom - Lovely images as always – wish I’d been there…05/03/2016 – 9:49 amReplyCancel

    • admin - Thanks Tom – it was a great workshop apart from me accidentally dropping a camera and lens into Loch Achtriochtan on the first day that is! Best regards.15/03/2016 – 6:26 pmReplyCancel

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