part 1 - Land, sea and sky awakes!
Prior to that, March
4th and March 8th both saw chances of photogenic convection which I met
up with at Borth. Both saw largely messy structure but the rough seas
were set off nicely by watersports enthusiasts!
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mid-March and high pressure dominates the weather, so that it is at
last warming up nicely, for what feels like the first time since
These two images are from
the 4th - the above one shows a nice towering cumulus going up - a sure
sign of a bit of heat about! The one below happened - a bit like most
weather - by pure chance!
The 7th saw very rough seas, dark skies and
heavy downpours of rain, hail and snow, but was largely poor for good
cloudscapes. I concentrated on the rough seas, with their kite-surfers
and black backdrop, in the morning...
...and, in the afternoon, on a windsurfer
as the wind and sea both got up even more with a very heavy shower
going past in the background. Thunder was heard in several parts of
Wales during the afternoon....
This storm swung a
rough-looking gust-front SE over my position and threw horizontal snow
at me for a few minutes, although its main core rolled onshore further
to my north, where it hailed very heavily....
As the downpour cleared, a spreading anvil
became visible from a mature storm-cell miles out to sea; this
predictably decayed as it moved onto the coast, and it was time to call
it a day!
from those two trips, the relative absence of photogenic weather has
given me the chance to try my hand at
something different - wildlife photography, which turns out to be quite
a tricky business! I thought I might post the first results anyway.
ten days ago, I was heading towards Talybont via the back-lanes, after
dropping off a big sign I had made for a customer, when I came across a
large flock of red kites, and I had the DSLR handy.....
a noteworthy sight, the recovery of the kite has been a major success
story here in Mid Wales. Today, sights like this are not that
There's a lot to suss out with digital photography and the mistake I
made here was not cranking the ISO setting up, thereby taking shots at
too slow an exposure. I reviewed the results and decided to return to the
same spot on a sunny day as soon as I could.... and make sure I set the
ISO to get faster exposures (these three were all taken at ISO 200).....
Monday 16th March brought plenty of warm sunshine so I thought I'd give
it a go. The verges were ablaze with Celandines - a sure sign that the
land is waking up after the long, dreary winter's sleep...
When I arrived, there was not a kite to be seen. Typical! I decided to
hang around for a while and see what might turn up. After ten minutes
or so, a group of kites arrived, nowhere near as many as before, but to
make up for it, there was a fascinating confrontation with a buzzard.
Now what was that - ah, yes - ISO 500!
buzzard was acting quite aggressively......
...but the kites seemed to decide to gang together!
a twisting, swirling dogfight ensued!
Getting personal! Buzzard is lower bird in contact on the RHS of the
....until the buzzard seemed to decide it had had enough! One of the
kites was determined to chase after it though...
better pleased with these images, but I'm sure I can improve on
them.... a longer lens would help (these were all taken at 200mm), but
I'll have to win the Lottery first! The 12-200mm range I have does most
weather situations happily enough for now, so I'm not going to lose
sleep on the matter!
The same day, I saw the first butterfly of the year - this Comma. Looks
like it has had a narrow escape from something that had a bit of its
It's my favourite time of year and I don't think I'm alone in that
sentiment. Winter can have a beauty to it but it drags and - I think
it's the low light levels and short days - there is something deeply
depressing about it, for me. Spring has the opposite effect - and
there's summer to look forward to - catching mackerel and cooking them
over a fire, lots of big thunderstorms and many other such delights!
Bring it on!
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