I had waited ten years to return to Iceland during the winter months. My previous trip had culminated in a spectacular showing of the Aurora Borealis. This time, I wanted to focus on land- and seascapes. Fortunately, the weather obliged with heavy cloud cover at night, precluding attempts to capture the Northern lights.
The cloud cover was accompanied by high winds, snow and ice storms that necessitated some careful judgments by Mark Bauer and Ross Hoddinott (Dawn 2 Dusk tutors), who had organised the trip for us. Thus, we lined up (and, in some cases, held onto) our tripods to capture some of the most beautiful winter scenery I had witnessed. The day before, heavy snow had left the black dunes at Stokksnes (one of the major viewpoints for Vestrahorn) blanketed in snow. This was very beautiful, but an even greater pleasure was to be had the next morning.
Overnight, there had been very high winds, and these had stripped away much of the snow on the dunes. We arrived just as the sun peeped over the horizon, bathing the mountain and the wispy clouds in a lovely pink glow. It was a magnificent sight and one that lasted for quite a while. This gave us plenty of time to try different locations and camera orientations before the light changed to broken grey-white wispy clouds that sometimes descended onto the mountaintop. It was a truly magical morning topped off by photographing reflections of the mountain on the wet black beach.
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Dimitri Vasileiou • Editor