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Architecture Birds Kapiti Coast Landscapes Light Maritime night Paremata Paremata Reflections Sunset Upper Hutt Waves Weather Wellington

May 31, 2016 … after the longest gap in my blogging history

Life has been a mixture of ordinary routine, and intense busy-ness. This does not excuse the long lapse in my blogging, and I shall try to rein that in.

Lake Wairarapa
Lake Wairarapa as the incoming weather from the South turns it grey.

My first image this time, was made in the South Wairarapa the weekend before last. It was a fine day in Wellington and Mary and I decided to explore a little of the Ocean Beach road. If you follow it (on foot or by bicycle), you come round the South Coast to Wainuiomata. We were less ambitious and planned a picnic near DOC’s Corner Creek camp site. Sadly the weather turned to custard, and by the time we were halfway down the Western shoreline of Lake Wairarapa, blue skies had yielded to unremitting grey. For the time being, there was no wind and I liked the gentle shades of approaching winter.

Makara
Makara in a stiff Nor-Wester

In the week that followed, I went to Makara where a strong Nor-Wester was tumbling the surf onto the growling pebbly beach. It was bleak and cold, and I was the only person there.

Beehive
The Beehive at Sunset

The same day, I had been invited to drinks at the university to mark the departure of one of my erstwhile colleagues. At the conclusion of the event, as the day was fading into night, I noticed that the ensign on the flagpole of the Beehive (our parliamentary office complex) was floodlit. This is new.

Belmont
Mist wreaths the foothills of the Tararuas as seen from the suburb of Belmont

Yesterday, the morning sky was blue, but there was a lot of low-level mist drifting about. I set out in search of places that might give a good view. The sun was my enemy in this enterprise as it was causing the mist to burn off quickly.

Taita
Taita Gorge in the morning

In theĀ  shade of the Taita Gorge, it lingered a little longer but that was the last of my attempted mist shots.

Heron
Heron in the stillness

As I turned for home, I realized that the morning had transformed into a beautiful still Wellington day. A hasty diversion over Haywards Hill took me to Motukaraka point on the Pauatahanui inlet where I enjoyed watching a white-faced heron picking its elegant way through the shallows finding crabs. As you can see it scarcely disturbed the water.

Inlet
“A typical Wellington day at last”

Because the day had become so picturesque, and because my scales tell me I desperately need the exercise, I went along the Camborne Walkway beside the inlet towards Paremata. Fluffy clouds reflected beautifully in the perfect waters of the inlet.

Boatsheds
The boat sheds at Paremata

The boatsheds at Paremata are often photographed, and this is not the first time for me either. I love the random use of paint such that two adjacent walls are rarely the same colour. I hope not to leave it so long until the next edition.

 

 

 

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Cook Strait Landscapes Light Upper Hutt Whiteman's Valley

May 16, 2016 … one foot after the other

There is much going on in my head. There are competitions to prepare for, and a portfolio to create. The weather has turned mean after a prolonged summer, but I keep trying.

Tarakena
From Tarakena Bay across the strait to the Kaikouras

Earlier in the week, I spent a little time on the South coast in Tarakena Bay where there was a view across the grey waters of the Strait.

Wreck
Mysterious wreck, parked in the bush 21 km from the coast

Yesterday, I wandered around the Ian Poole Reserve in Wainuiomata, and in a patch of bush was astonished to find a quite large vessel that had been there long enough for trees to grow up between it and the access road.

Toetoe
It was a mean wind

From there, I went South down the coast road where the greyness was absolute, so I focused on the toetoe whipping around in the vicious wind.

Wallaceville
The Upper Valley from the ridge at Wallaceville

This morning, I passed through Upper Hutt over the hill at Wallaceville. From there the view back towards Emerald Hill and beyond to the Southern foothills of the Tararuas was enhanced by the crepuscular rays sneaking through the crowds.

Whiteman's Valley
This little stream had no name that I could find, but it flows into the Mangaroa River

Over the ridge in Whiteman’s Valley, I found a stream that seemed worth a look.

And that’s all I have this time.

 

 

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Birds flowers Hutt River insects Landscapes Maritime Otaki Seaview Sunset

May 8, 2016 … stillness and water

Most days since I last wrote, I have made pictures, but most pictures were fairly ordinary.

Roses
Roses all the way

A bouquet of flowers for mothers’ day arrived, and I hijacked them, using the TV screen as a background. I confess to focus-stacking to achieve sharpness front to back.

Hikoikoi
The boatsheds at Hikoikoi reserve. We seem to have acquired some visitors … two more boats than usual.

It may have become apparent over the years that I am irresistibly drawn to reflections on still water. Combine that with the warm light of a setting sun under a nearly clear sky and I am ready to go.

Sunset
Golden glow

From the estuary around to the marina. I have made many images there over the years, in rain and shine, by day and at night. Conditions alter so much that I shall always regard each new day as an opportunity for a new image even if the subject is the same.

Landscape
Looking back towards the Tararuas from Otaki Beach

Today (Mothers’ Day), Mary and I set out for Otaki Beach. The bird life was plentiful and varied, but mostly at a distance. That left me with the opportunity for a landscape at the estuary of the Otaki River.

Skylark
Skylark waiting for its lunch to come within range

As we drove towards the beach for lunch, I spotted this little skylark perched on one of the boundary posts at the edge of the lagoon. I coasted to a stop and wound Mary’s window down, and took this shot through her window. The insect to the right was unaware of the danger it was flying towards. The skylark, on the other hand was on full alert, and as the insect came into range it was snapped up with one movement of the head, and was seen no more.