Autumn in Glendalough

Early bird catches the image

I'd been hoping for a combination of good weather, a free morning to hike, and a not so sleepy head for an early pre dawn hike. I was set on going to Glendalough in Wicklow in the hope the Autumn fall colours were appearing in the valley.

The morning was set, weather forecast was slightly optimistic and I went to bed early, I had the batteries charged and had my headtorch at the ready.

I awoke at 5am before the alarm woke everyone in the house, within minutes I was dressed and into the car. This time of year it was little over two hours before sunrise when i set off, 40 kms in the car and then a 40 minute hike in the dark to the viewpoint.

The viewpoint is a spot i'd found whilst walking the Wicklow Way and not one i'd seen many images of Glendalough from so hopefully all going well I might get a great unique photo (unique considering thousands of images are taken at Glendalough every day) I'd been here before in Summer and all the trees were all green and the light wasn't great, so try again to improve.

I set up my tripod, light of pre-dawn was starting to make it easier to see the landscape in front of me, I chose a composition and decided I was going to stay put and hope the light would create some magic. I was not going to run around taking different images even if it meant I got nothing :) 

Trusting your instincts.

An hour passed and sunrise was behind me, another twenty minutes I reckoned and the sun should be above the hills. The clouds were rolling in and the mist above the mountains luckily seemed to stay on horizon, my optimism though was waning. Then for a brief probably no more than two minutes the light shone in the valley, saturating the colours of all the hues of yellow green and gold on the leaves. Absolute Magic !!

Glendalough in Autumn or Fall. Magical light

Glendalough in Autumn or Fall. Magical light

The hint of a rainbow in the mist above the mountain peaks is the icing on what was incredibly rewarding morning out, had I not trusted my instincts I might have left on what apart from those two magical minutes of light was an otherwise drab morning with overcast sky.

Here a black and white image of the scene which I quite like too though for different reasons as you dont know its Autumn with the removal of colour.

Glendalough Mono

Glendalough Mono


Let me know what you think in the comments, and as always thanks for reading and viewing.