Yesterday I was out all day, combining a 6 hour hike with an after sunset shoot under a nearly full moon. The hike was stunning, but not in a good way. The first 2 hours I was out on the bare hills east of Torbay and the wind was blowing very hard, it was a stun breeze. Sustained winds were intolerable for any kind of steady handed photography, so I used my heavy duty tripod. The frequent wind gusts however, were increasing in number, duration and strength. I had to hold down the tripod at all times because in normal wind it vibrated like a musical instrument but the gusts were strong enough to knock the whole contraption over, even in lowered stature. I had no reason to talk but when I opened my mouth anyway to curse the wind my cheeks flapped around like bloodhound facing a leaf blower. My camera strap was violently flying in the wind and knocked me in the face a few times with enough force to leave a mark. In these high winds, fluids left my nose involuntary, the wind was blowing my nose for me, yuck! After I left the open hills and entered the sheltered forest, things improved. Still, the forest seemed haunted; all the trees complained with squeaky noises and the forest floor was moving everywhere, stirred by the strained roots running underneath the trail.
In the afternoon, the winds died down and I was able to talk to a few folks on the trail. A new loop was being added in the East Coast Trail section I was walking, and about a dozen trailblazers were busy making new stairs and clearing the ground for the trail to come through.
The trail is almost finished here, and where it’s not you can just follow the brightly coloured ribbons in the trees or the heath.
The trail led all the way from Torbay Point up to Torbay Southern Head, than down to sea level at the cove and back up again towards Redcliff Head. Adding my off trail outings, I guess about 750 metres of up and down, my knees were a bit shaky by the end of the hike.
Exhausted as I was, there was a moon rising and the skies were fairly clear. I didn’t have a lot of energy left so instead of doing the evening shoot on the trail I took the car and headed for Signal Hill, where I shot some light trails coming up the hill.
If you’re familiar with Signal Hill, you’ll notice they’ve added a sidewalk for all the folks jogging up and down, which is a big improvement if you ask me.