Friday Photo #289- Summer Sunset

Summer Sunset - Friday Photo #289

Photo: A sun that now sets, Flakstadøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. July 20, 2018. 00:27

After almost two months circling the sky over Lofoten, the sun is beginning it’s slow journey towards the south. Over the next months, the nights on Lofoten will grow longer by around one hour per week, until the sun sets for the last time in early December and the polar night arrives in the north.

Partially because I was traveling until mid June and also because of so much bad weather, it feels too early for the sun to be leaving! A few more weeks would be nice. But now, for me as a photographer, the wonderful twilight nights begin, during which there is wonderful light to be found! And my headlamp can still stay in the closet for a little while longer.

One of the things that keeps lofoten interesting for me is the constant change. As soon as I’m getting used to a season, it’s gone. To be replaced by something new. And now it is only a short countdown until the aurora season begins! Another type of light in the night!

Camera Info:
Nikon D850
Nikon 70-200mm f/4
200mm
ISO 320
f 5.0
1/400 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #288 – Summer Nights

Summer Nights - Friday Photo #288

Photo: Rays of light over Skolmen, Vestvågøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. June 28, 2018. 03:49

With July almost halfway over the midnight sun will soon be disappearing from Lofoten. And while the Islands lose light by about 1 hour per week until the sun sets for the last time of the year in early December, there is still another month of so before I’ll need to pull out my headlamp. Or, usually it is during a night out in mid August that I notice it’s a bit dark, and then it takes another trip or two before I actually remember to pack a light.

But for the time being, I stay up late and wake up late. The beauty of summer here at the moment is the late nights. And even if I’m lazy, or stuck in front of the computer until the early hours of the morning, I always take a look out the window and see what the light is up to.

This evening had actually been somewhat grey and flat. But as I took a look outside while brushing my teeth, I had to stop and go grab my camera. A couple quick shots out the bathroom window, and then I was off the bed…

Camera Info:
Nikon D850
Nikon 70-20mm f/4
200mm
ISO 100
f 9
1/1600 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #287 – Himmeltind Midnight

Himmeltind Midnight - Friday Photo #287

Photo: Midnight sun shines over Uttakleiv beach from summit of Himmeltind, Vestvågøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. July 3, 2018. 01:12

I’m just back in the door from my first photo tour of the summer where we hiked 5 mountains over 6 days, with one day spent down low due to weather. I must say this was quite lucky, with the summer Lofoten has been having so far this year, as I somehow managed to time the tour with the only week of good weather!

And on this day especially, it was t-shirts and sweat in the evening sun as we made our way up the 931 meters to Himmeltind, the highest mountain on Vestvågøy. Once at the top, the time for waiting began, taking photos every now and again, until the sun was low on the horizon – or, as low as it gets at this time of year.

Eventually a layer of clouds began to fill what had been a nearly cloudless blue sky. And and soon some distant waves of rain began to appear on the horizon. The previous night, a cool sea fog and mountain clouds had arrived over Lofoten after around 02:00. So we stayed up, in hopes of this. But the fog seemed to be approaching at a glacial pace. So once the clocks hit 02:30, we decided to head down. Shortly after a gentle rain began, which turned into a heavy downpour just minutes before reaching my van. Good timing I guess!

Camera Info:
Nikon D850
Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8
35mm
ISO 100
f 11
1/13 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #285 – Summer Gloom

Kvalvika Beach - Friday Photo #285

Photo: Misty clouds conceal the summit of Ryten from Kvalvika beach, Moskenesøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. July 9, 2016. 18:53

Summer 2018 seems to be on hold for the moment. After a dry and cold winter, it now seems we have arrived at a wet and cold summer, with the thermostat struggling to reach even 10˚C most days in June so far and heavy grey clouds hanging over the mountains. Quite a contrast to June last year, which had weeks of warm sunny weather. But that is the nature of the weather up hear – no predictability at all. Some summers are good, others are bad.

Even in bad weather however, there can be a quite beauty to the landscape here. And if you, and your camera, can handle a bit of rain – though I must admit I try and avoid rain as much as possible, I’m Californian after all… – there is still plenty out there to see and experience. And while I would prefer perfect sunny and warm summers, you need to bad days to make the good ones stand out even more.

So if you’re heading up here soon, don’t forget your jacket!

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 24mm f/3.5 tilt-shift
24mm
ISO 50
f 16
6 seconds
WB Daylight
6 stop ND filter
2 images – top, bottom

Friday Photo #284 – Gimsøy Summer

Gimsøy Summer - Friday Photo #284

Photo: 01:00 am summer light over Gimsøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. June 12, 2017. 01:04

I have previously posted an image from this fanstastic June night – Friday Photo ###. That one was looking directly into the sun. This is just a few meters away, looking across the soft pastel light that was falling over the landscape. As much as the northern lights keep me up late in winter, that can involve a bit of suffering at times. In summer, under the midnight sun, it is generally just pure joy. Lofoten really is a land for insomniacs!

While the sun had been shining bright and strong a little while earlier, it eventually sunk into some clouds lower on the horizon. The light was still warm, but now with a gentle softness. Nights like this are why I moved here, and with as many reasons as there are to visit at other times of the year, a warm summer night under the midnight sun is simply wonderful. Something that everyone should experience once.

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8
17mm
ISO 80
f 11
1/6 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #283 – Summer Mood

Cotton Grass - Friday Photo #283

Photo: Cottongrass and evening light, Moskenesøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. June 12, 2017. 22:58

Cottongrass is a familiar plant in the summer mountains of Lofoten. It´s also a good marker of where not to put a tent!

Wandering around in the hilly landscape of Yttersandheia one June evening, the backlit ´cotton´ with the low evening sun caught my eye. The sky was a bit boring anyhow, and I was having trouble finding a nice composition. So I just decided to lay on the ground and look for something abstract.

Nothing special here, just a nice summer mood…

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 70-200mm f/4
200mm
ISO 125
f 5.6
1/500 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #282 – June Mountain Snow

June Mountain Snow - Friday Photo #282

Photo: June mountain snow on Munken, Moskenesøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. June 10, 2016. 21:51

It´s June and the trails of Lofoten will soon be filling up with hikers. And while the coast of Lofoten is green and beginning to fill with flowers, winter is still holding on in the higher mountains of Lofoten, especially in the more inland area. So while many trails will begin to be snow free, particularly anything that follows a ridge or is in close proximity of the sea, snow may still stop access, especially without proper equipment, on some mountains.

Here, looking towards Munken, which rises to nearly 800 meters, there is still significant snow coverage across much of the route. Will this stop you from getting to the top? Possibly. And better to be safe if unsure.

And beyond snow potentially blocking a route, June is an elevated period for rockfall as the mountains begin to thaw and fall apart. It is generally best to avoid any trails which travel under exposed cliffs.

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8
38mm
ISO 100
f 11
1/80 seconds
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #266 – Reine

Reine Winter - Friday Photo #266

Photo: Olstind rises above the frozen shoreline, Reine, Moskenesøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. January 22, 2018. 09:50

It is not often that I take photos in Reine anymore. But occasionally, and usually when I’m guiding a workshop, I’ll come across some nice conditions in which it’s worth pulling out the camera. After several days in the area this january with an annoying south wind keeping the bay reflection-less, conditions finally calmed.

After some decent snow, and then rain which washed much of it away, it was almost completely dry during the 2nd half of January this year. But the dry conditions also brought a freezing cold to Lofoten, and so even without snow, we had ice.

As the tide receded, the frozen sections of the shoreline waters were left to fall and break across the rocks. Without this element as a foreground, I probably wouldn’t have shot this scene – even though the twilight was nice enough itself! But the this layer of ice helps hide what would be, for me, the overly messy rocks and seaweed. I also shot another composition with just Olstind’s reflection in the water, but I like this version better, as it gives a better sense of place to the image.

Camera Info:
Nikon D810
Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8
29mm
ISO 100
f 10
.5 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #245- Midnight Glow

Midnight Glow - Friday Photo #245

Photo: Midnight sun shines between mountain peaks, Helvetestind, Moskenesøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. June 14, 2017. 00:17

On my second trip to Helvetestind in two weeks, Conditions were totally different on this night. A heavy fog was blowing in from the north. Bunes beach has been completely concealed and was invisible from above.

As we descended at midnight, I could see this glow of light shining between Mereflesstind and Kråkhammartind over Kirkefjord. I light layer of fog was blowing in, glowing in the low light of the midnight sun.

I found a place along the ridge that I though gave a nice separation to the layers of mountains ahead of me. Rather than shooting wide, I switched to my 70-200 so I could focus just on the light coming from behind the mountains.

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 70-200mm f/4
120mm
ISO 200
f 9
1/400 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #244 – Olstind Twilight

Olstind - Friday Photo #244

Photo: Olstind mountain peak reflects in fjord, Sakrisøy, Moskenesøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. June 14, 2017. 02:11

My fried Olaf dropped my tour group off at Sakrisøy after a midnight trip up Helvetestind – my second time to the summit in two weeks.

A sea fog had been covering all the land to the north but back on the south side, the world was calm. Tired after a long day, we decided one more shot was needed.

I’ve photographed Olstind hundreds of times by now for almost every possible angle. But it is still a peak which I never grow tired of. And so I pulled out my camera and tripod for yet another photo of this iconic mountain.

I like the softness of the light here. It was ‘sunrise’ but it doesn’t really appear so. If the fjord was not perfectly calm, perhaps I wouldn’t have taken the image. But it was so quiet out, just us standing at the edge of the sea – and a few birds making some noise in the distance.

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8
24mm
ISO 200
f 10
1/80 second
WB Daylight