I left the excellent campsite at Geilo and took to the E7 route heading south. The trees were just stunning in their autumn colours that seem to get more saturated as each day passes. Near a place called Nes in Buskerund Kommune I came to Lake Hallingdalselva where the reflection of the wooded area opposite was just exquisite. Once again I saw a house that seemed to have been built in just an ideal location. The whole scene just had to be photographed.
The silver birch trees above made a really good tryptic I thought (I may swap them around when I get round to printing them!)
Woke up to a fine morning and sorted the van out ready for travel. I’m now about two and a half hours drive from Bodø, so a gentle amble in that direction and see what I come across on the way.
A change of plan! Before setting off I decided to take a little wander in the area of the rest area and found a gem of a place made up of small pools containing water plants with really good reflections. I ended up spending 2 hours photographing small details.
And so I made my way south on the E6 passing through Moan (I’m sure it doesn’t mean the same in Norwegian!), Sildhopen, Vesterbotn and Straumen where I stopped and checked into the Strømhaug Camping campsite, having decided it was time I had a shower!!
I spent the rest of the day tidying the van up and giving it a clean inside (it has to be done sometime) and tidying myself up with a shower and washing some clothes.
The evening was spent processing photographs and writing this blog.
Left Flakstad beach with some sadness. It’s been a good place to spend time there. Fiona and I had a great time here and on my last visit I met some great, interesting people with whom I exchanged contact details.
Stopped at Kilan and walked along the banks of the fjord but though it looked like an ideal setting I just couldn’t find a composition I was happy with.
However a few kilometres further on I found a small lake where the reflections of the trees on the bank was just perfect.
I also photographed a house by a lake because occasionally I see a house that to me is in the perfect location and this was one of those houses. It was by a lake, in the mountains, surrounded by trees and in what can only be described as a beautiful part of the world.
Making my way now to the campsite at Sandsletta but changed my mind and booked into the site at Brustranda Sjøcamping. I stayed there with Fiona about a week ago. Lovely setting and good facilities.
As the sun began to set, the reflection of the cabins on site, built in the style of the traditional rorbu fishing huts, just had to be photographed.
I got the van all sorted out, had a shower and a meal and now I’m parked in a lay-by up the road because there was too much light pollution at the site to watch and photograph the aurora that’s happening right now.
The two images above were taken just over a minute apart and you can see the Aurora changes shape very slowly. Twenty minutes later and it looks like the mountain is engulfed in green flame.
By 9.30pm the show was over and it was time to return to the campsite and turn in for the night. Another great day supplied by the landscape of northern Norway.
I had spent the night at a campsite called Sildpollnes Sjøcamp in a tiny community called Valan, which sticks out on a small peninsular in the area of Vågan, Nordland. It was a really pleasant site and the location was very picturesque. There was a white church a few metres from where I parked the van and later, as I prepared to leave, I put the drone up to get an aerial view of the site. The water was completely still and the reflection of the mountains in the fjord was stunning.
I left Valan but stopped about a kilometre up the road at a rest area that gave a great view over the fjord and the harbour I had just come from. I spent more than two hours making images from all kinds of angles and perspectives. I watched as a small fishing boat returning to the harbour was dwarfed by the huge mountains in the background where it had been fishing.
The weather was perfect. I’ve been so lucky with the weather, it could have been so different had the weather not played the game for me.
Passing a tiny harbour called Nappsvågen I noticed three large trawlers moored up in a row with the afternoon sun lighting them up. Well I couldn’t miss an opportunity like that.
I had decided to spend a few more days on the Lofoten Islands before I had to start thinking about heading south, so I headed for Flakstad beach where Fiona and I had really enjoyed our time a few days previously. Also the Aurora forecast promised a bit of a spectacular this evening.
On arrival at Flakstad I headed straight for Skagsanden Beach (its real name) and the colours of the dying sun did not disappoint. The setting sun was lighting up the west face of Trolldalsvatnet mountain and using the 16mm lens I was able to get an image using the foreground rocks on the beach as leading lines pointing straight at the mountain. I really like this image.
There were quite a few people on the beach and many of them were on road trips like me. I met and got talking to a couple from Luxembourg/Belgium who were travelling together with no end date for their journey. There were also two German guys, one of whom was married to an Australian woman, who were all travelling together on a long holiday from their home in Munich. She was an excellent portrait and wedding photographer. Take a look at her work here. She was also a great talker!!
As the evening wore on and the sun sank lower creating beautiful deep yellows and then reds in the sky, everyone was getting more and more excited at the prospect of a really special Aurora show.
Sure enough around 11.0pm the Northern Lights spectacular began! It was just awe inspiring! The Aurora seemed to fill the sky and wrap itself around everyone. It was like a multi tentacled green monster about to devour whatever it felt like. Yet it also seemed that I could just reach out and touch it, even though it was many miles high, because it filled the sky it felt so close. This was certainly something I shall never forget.
And then it was all over. After around 30 minutes, everything just faded away. But everyone on the beach was just speechless. We all then went back to our vehicles to ponder on what we had just witnessed and how we could describe it to our friends and families. What an end to an unforgettable day.