The planning starts the night before a trip, it involves checking the weather forecast on a few websites as the BBC’s weather is sometimes not the most reliable! Then the sunrise and sunset times are noted along with using Memory Map to scope out suitable locations for sunrise/ sunset shots.
The weather forecast looked promising, light winds with a low of -7c. Ideal weather for a trip away. Glencoe is about 100 miles from my house, so planning is important as I don’t like to squander time (or money) on a wasted trip.
The plan was to get a sunrise at Rannoch Moor. Either Loch Ba, which would mean facing towards the sunrise, or Lochan Nah Achlaise which would mean the sunrise light hitting the Black Mount behind the Lochan.
I left around 5.15am, a little later than planned, luckily the traffic was light. As I travelled further north, the temperature gauge on the car started going lower and lower until I reached Loch Tulla and the gauge was showing -15c. The whole of the Loch was frozen over, which I thought would be a good picture opportunity for later on. There was not a cloud in the sky until I went up the hill towards Rannoch Moor. As soon as I got closer towards Rannoch Moor, I drove into a bank of freezing mist with visibility was down to around 30 feet. This was no use, you couldn’t even see the sky never mind the sunrise. I made the decision not to hang about and started back down towards Loch Tulla where I knew I would be able to get something decent.
This first picture was taken by the side of Loch Tulla after a climb over a fence and down towards the Lochside. The sunrise was still about 10-15 minutes away so the predawn light was starting to change from dark blue to shades of pink and purple.
The next couple of images were taken after sunrise with the sun hitting the black mount behind the Loch. After I had exhausted all possibilities for sunrise shots, I decided to head back up to Rannoch Moor and see if the mist had lifted.
On getting back up to Lochan Nah Achlaise, I was greeted with the glorious sight of the mist starting to lift revealing the sunlight striking the Black Mount behind the Lochan. A few shots later and it was in the bag. It’s moments like these that I love, you know you have got a good image and it makes the trip worthwhile.
After leaving the Lochan on a high, I made my way towards Glencoe. I decided to get an old favourite, a standard postcard shot of the ‘Black Rock’ cottage with the Buachaille behind it.
Continued in Part 2…